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Author – Mark Baxter

We recently caught up with the charming, Jazz loving, hard grafting man-a-bout-town, Author Mark ‘Bax’ Baxter, to talk about what it takes to become an author and his latest book project with Ian Snowball! This is what he had to say…

01. How did you get started in the world of words?

Sadly it was two sad events in my personal life, both within a few months of each other in the year 2000, that gave me the biggest kick up the arse imaginable, making me realise we aren’t on this planet for too long and that tomorrow is promised to no one. So if I was ever going do the things I always planned, like write a book, score a goal at Wembley, or get into studio 2 at Abbey Road. I had better get cracking at the age of 37 and that I did at the start of 2001. I had an idea of the clothing within the game of football. Not just what the players wore off duty, but also what the fans wore, from Mod, Skin to Casuals and then weave in the story of the brands that mattered to us all!

02. Where did you see the first piece you had written in print?

That idea above became The Fashion of Football – From Best To Beckham, published in 2004. As I said, I had the idea but absolutely no idea to get it published. As a result of some business I was involved in, I met writer Paolo Hewitt, who was someone I admire for his writing in his NME days and after some persuading, PH agreed to write the book, with me researching and providing the ideas and eventually a bit of writing.

03. Was it a struggle getting your first book published?

Not with this first one, as Paolo had an agent who did us a deal for the book and that came out on Mainstream and would go on to sell something like 3,000 copies.

04. Can you remember how you felt the first time you picked up your book fresh from the printers?

Very hard to describe. I just kept looking at it. Me, a writer of an actual book? Crazy really. But of course, I was bitten by the bug!

05. How do you deal with potential rejection from Publishers?

I had a lot of practice with that my second idea! It was called The Mumper, and it looked at the life of 7 guys in a pub in South East London. One of the sad events I mentioned above was the death of my Dad aged 65, just three months after he retired. I was very close to my Dad and spent a lot of time with him as a kid watching him sing in pubs and clubs of the local area. Going onto those trips, aged 12/13, I started to meet loads of characters, so who would have fitted in very nicely in ‘Minder’ or ‘Fools And Horses’. Funny people, who were constantly up to something, but who made me laugh my head off. Anyway, I told Paolo I was going to write a novel about them all and he agreed to have a look at the writing and advise me as I went along. And this he did. I managed to somehow get to 75, 000 words and as I was writing it, I could see it as a film. The only problem was I couldn’t get a publishing deal, and it was rejected by over 60 publishers. So, I decided to self publish in 2007 and it took all my life savings to get it into book form. Barry Pease @ Pip! Pip!, who you may know, did a marvellous job on the cover art and off we went. It sold nearly 1,000 copies before the industry caught up with the book and started to take it seriously. It later got a proper book deal with Orion, who are one of the biggest publishers in the UK and the film rights were optioned and became the 2012 film ‘Outside Bet’ starring Bob Hoskins (RIP).

06. What type of writers excite you?

At the minute, I’m well into Damon Runyon and SJ Perelman. Over the years, most of Nik Cohn’s work I have liked, as well as Frank Norman and Colin MacInnes. I grew up reading lot of the music journalists such as: Danny Baker, Paul Morley, Nick Kent and Paolo, so they would be influential at the start of it all.

07. As an author how do you feel about reviews and the Industry mechanics?

Reviews are very important, but hard to attain, unless you have a heavyweight publisher behind you and they are to get in to. My experience of the industry is that it is a little bit like a closed shop. But having said that, if you have strong enough idea and you are prepared to graft, you might get somewhere, sometimes despite people instead of them helping from the start.

08. What’s a typical working day like for you?

I’ve been writing now full time since New Years Day 2008 and currently have 12 books published in one form or the other. Sadly, making a decent living from publishing books at my level is nigh on impossible, so I also write websites, blogs, PR copy, social media text etc, every day to keep the self-employment going. A typical day starts at 6am. I write up all the latest entries for the 12 to 15 Facebook and Twitter pages I work on until 9am. Then I might work on a film script ( I have recently made a few documentaries with my film business partner Lee Cogswell) or I will head into Soho for a load of meetings, and to do a bit of networking. They tend to be long old days, but usually interesting and enjoyable

09. What would be the title of your autobiography?

‘What You?!?’ – That was said to me by a former 9-5 colleague who heard I had my first book coming out and he uttered that immortal phrase. I was really taken back that he thought that I couldn’t do it. If I ever struggle on a job and I have many times, I always think of the plum who said that, then I smile and crack on and think ‘yes, me mate…’

10. What do you do aside from writing, where do you seek inspiration yourself?

Inspiration comes from people in whatever industry it might be, who have made a success of it. Be it in film, sport, music, or normal 9-5 work . Being around those people, and I’m lucky to have worked with some very big names, you can’t help to learn from the best and I continue to do that , every single day

11. What book do you wish you had written?

I’ll give you a couple – ‘The Affectionate Punch’ By Justin de Villeneuve or ‘Absolute Beginners’ by Colin MacInnes.

12. How has the internet changed what you do?

It has helped a lot with self publishing and then selling the book too, through the social media. With all these things, it has great sides and it has its terrible sides. If you use it right, it can only help

13. Do you have any advice for wannabe authors?

I do get asked a lot about helping with books, that people have had an idea to write. I always say just start writing and don’t worry about editing as you go along. Get to the end of the story and then read it back and then edit. After the fifth draft, if you still want to write the book, you will make a great job of it. Sadly, I rarely hear of anyone finishing the book, as it is a very tough process to do it right and most seem to give up

14. What projects are you planning for the future and please plug your latest book?

Really busy at the minute as we are finishing a documentary on legendary Ivy League retailer John Simons for release on DVD in Sept/Oct and we have three other films in various stages and we’re constantly juggling from one to the other. I have just had my 12th book – ‘A Hard Days Month’ co written with Ian Snowball – published through New Haven. It is mainly set in 1964 and follows two suburban 16 year old school girls as they stalk The Beatles at gigs and public appearances around the UK in the summer the album and film ‘A Hard Days Night’ came out. They are trying to get their copies of the album signed by the fabs and along the way they discover boys, drink, drugs, family death and all the stops in between. It is the final summer of their childhood and time to grow up.

*Well done to Millwall Football Club on their recent promotion!

Feedback so far has been great and you can order the book at Waterstones, Amazon or Barnes and Noble in the States among many other places: GRAB A COPY HERE. or at WATERSTONES HERE.


A Hard Day’s Month
www.barnesandnoble.com
‘A Hard Day’s Month’ by Ian Snowball and Mark Baxter follows two surburban Beatles obsessed teenage girls, ( Sandra and Cynthia) as they go on an adventure attempting to get their copies of their A Hard Day’s Night LP’s autographed by the Fabs. As they trail the band all over the UK, they slowly leave their innocent world of Fabdom behind and begin to discover a world of boys, drink, drugs, family bereavement and the ‘normal’ life which seems mapped out for them. ‘A Hard Days Month ‘ is a funny, exciting and heartwarming story with music of The Beatles as it’s the soundtrackIt is the story of one last summer to be truly themselves, before they have to grow up and leave it all behind…

admin

Boo Eyeplug acts as webmaster/designer for the Eyeplug site. Not the most social of creatures and with several personality issues, and rather exotic, eccentric tastes for obscure ‘cultish’ stuff which makes his ramblings seem even more sweetly abstract and often annoying.

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May 25, 2017 By : Category : Culture DozenQ Eyeplugs Front page Literature Tags:, , , ,
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DozenQ – Darren Deicide

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series DozenQ5

Darren Deicide was born on Halloween in the rhythm and blues filled environment of Chicago. Colorful reviews describe his playing style as ‘blending the best aspects of blues, rock n’ roll, and punk!’ We recently caught up with Darren and here’s what he had to testify…

01 How did you get started?

One day Satan said ‘Give them hell’, so I did.

02 Where did your name come from, being based on the IOW how does that influence things?

‘Deicide’ was a nickname I was given from old friends, and it has stuck since childhood. I think a combination of alliteration and my natural disposition named me.

03 Who are your major influences and inspirations and who do you despise?

I think any artist that is genuinely engaged in their process absorbs influences from every angle, like a sponge. I couldn’t exactly point to everything that makes each one of my songs what it is. I’m simply a byproduct of Americana, a mutt living against the grain of an empire in decline. So I consider my music a return of sorts. It’s a return to the aesthetic trends that existed before we bred a certain type of pretension into American culture, and I despise all the forces that are driving this decline. The complacent, the obedient, the fake, and the willfully ignorant are all at the top of my shit list at the moment.

04 What drives you to make music?

I wake up and ask myself that question all the time. I think this goes back again to the difference between a genuine artist and someone just repeating a schtick. I make music because, for whatever reason, I was hardwired to do so. To not, would be a life bereft of something. There are a lot of musicians like that right now, who exist in the undergrounds of America, and regardless of whatever the zeitgeist, they will continue doing what they do simply because they are compelled to push the aethers in one direction or another. Musicians are explorers who just can’t not take the muse into new and strange places.

05 What can someone who has never seen you live before expect from your live show?

They can expect to boil a hell-broth with me. They can expect to be taken to an unholy church of drunkenness and rage. They can expect to hear the primal call of shamanistic blues. They can expect an infernal juke house. Don’t be surprised if I wind up stomping on your coffee table.

06 Who writes your songs? What types of themes and subjects do you deal with?

I write all of my songs. Inspiration comes from many different directions, but I consider my music a type of playful terrorism. To me, that has been the tradition of the blues, from its roots to all of its mischievous children that have been spawned through the decades. The blues is a subtle rebellion, an innuendo of that which dare not be spoken. In this day and age, there is no shortage of subjects that need to be mocked and ridiculed with the prod of surrealism, eros, and fantasy. I am merely assuming the mantle.

07 How has your music evolved since you first began playing?

I think it has gone a number of different directions. It began as a sort of amateurish and crude version of what I do now, as I started in a bunch of punk bands. I still was working that energy out, until I started exploring some conceptual angles with Temptation and the Taboo, Part 1 and The Jersey Devil is Here. The Blues Non Est Mortuum really feels like a finished product to me, the culmination of everything that I’ve been doing with equal parts of everything and nothing overstated.

08 What has been your biggest challenge as a band? Were you been able to overcome this? If so, how?

I think the biggest challenge I, and most musicians face, is to overcome the invasive presence of media. Just about every venue, especially in America, has televisions up and an audience with their eyes glued to cell phones. It has created a horde of people that just aren’t present and it is sapping energy from the value of musical performance. On a great night, that is overcome, smothered by hand claps and a singing audience that have given themselves to the rapture. How else can we overcome it? Might I suggest smacking cell phones out of people’s hands and leaving its fate to the mosh pit?

09 Do you play covers? If you could pick any song, which would you like to cover most and why?

I have covers up my sleeve, but I generally don’t play them live. I do like the idea of taking ‘traditionals’ and reinventing them, as what had been common practice in the folk tradition. I’ve always liked to see the evolution of Americana classics in that process, which somewhat mimics ‘The Telephone Game’. My contribution was to take Skip James’ ‘Devil Got My Woman’ and transform it into ‘Devil is my Woman’. I was nudged by Rev. Adam Campbell to do it. Don’t worry, buddy. I didn’t forget you. I played it for Back from the Dead: The Harsimus Sessions, my live video series, and it’s on The Blues Non Est Mortuum. But I don’t get into covers as a matter of course. The bar cover band is a useless, old charade. It’s time to get relevant and original, people.

10 Where do you envisage being in five years time?

I don’t know. Predictability is overrated.

11 Who would you most like to record with?

My partner in crime, Ethel Lynn Oxide. Soon she will be evoked from the fog.

12 What should we be expecting from you in the near future?

See question 11. There will be no spoilers yet, but don’t expect me to disappear anytime soon. There will definitely be more touring in the works if I don’t wind up in a place like jail. You’re all going to have a hard time shaking this guy.
 

Web Links

Facebook: facebook.com/darrendeicide
Twitter: twitter.com/darrendeicide
Instagram: instagram.com/darrendeicide

Tour dates:
Shows can be found at darrendeicide.com

Link to buy the current LP:
The Blues Non Est Mortuum, the latest vinyl release, can be found RIGHT HERE

 

admin

Boo Eyeplug acts as webmaster/designer for the Eyeplug site. Not the most social of creatures and with several personality issues, and rather exotic, eccentric tastes for obscure ‘cultish’ stuff which makes his ramblings seem even more sweetly abstract and often annoying.

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April 3, 2017 By : Category : Blues Dark DozenQ Folk Interviews Music RnB Tags:, , , ,
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Is Bliss speak to Eyeplug

Is Bliss comprise of Jimmy Stuart (Guitar/Voice), Dean Edwards (Bass) and Sam Speakman (Drums) and are based in Portsmouth. Gaining critical acclaim due to their original sound, 6music airplays and incendiary live performances on the increasingly growing new psychedelic gig circuit, they are a band to look out for. After successful support slots with both Mark Gardener (Ride) & Robin Guthrie (Cocteau Twins), the band soon head out to do a support slot for The Jesus And Mary Chain on their current tour. Signed to Club AC30 with an imminent new E.P. recorded, Dean had a chat with Eyeplugs Dave Taylor who wanted to find out some more.

01. How did the band originate?

We started the band out of boredom I guess. Myself and Jimmy had been rehearsing songs now and then in his bedroom and when we felt we had something cool going on we decided that it would be best to look for a drummer. Sam was an old friend of Jimmy’s who had recently moved back to Portsmouth. Jimmy suggested we ask him to drum for us and from the first time we rehearsed as a 3-piece it felt right and we knew we were on to a winner with Sam.

02. How did you decide on your name?

The name ‘Is Bliss’ was a suggestion from a friend of the band who used to jam with me and Jimmy some while back before Sam joined. It seemed fitting and we stuck with it.

03. Who influences your sound?

We have always been fascinated by in our opinion, the two best eras for guitar bands, the 60s and the 90s. Both eras influence us heavily in the way we dress, think, write, play music and live. In terms of bands that made us want to start playing then we owe that to the likes of The Jesus and Mary Chain, The Thirteenth Floor Elevators, Jefferson Airplane, Spacemen 3, The Verve, Radiohead and The Brian Jonestown Massacre etc…

04. What are you currently listening to?

Right now, we are listening to White Fence, The Smoking Trees, The Spyrals, The Lucid Dream, Tinariwen and Dead Rabbits. Really, anything psychedelic and fuzzy is what we love!

05. How has the band evolved since it’s initial concept?

I feel we have evolved in every aspect of being a band really, We’ve learnt what common ground and also what differences we have and how to use that to create something we all are happy with. This is the case in every song, we all have to be into it 100%, otherwise it doesn’t work for us. We’ve evolved as friends too and grown closer as a unit. We know each others next move in the rehearsal room as well as on stage.

06. Your last release, the Velvet Dreams E.P. was Lauren Lavern’s Record of the Day on 6 Music and the first pressing completely sold out. Surely, you must be pleased with that?

For sure we were absolutely made up when we heard both of those! To be played on 6music is something we always wanted to achieve and so when we did this on our first attempt we felt a sense of pure excitement really, and to then go on to find out the E.P. completely sold out and went into the official charts, well that’s something I think we are still getting our heads around even now. We are incredibly proud of that and couldn’t thank everybody who bought a copy enough!  

07. You’ve personally been selected by The Jesus And Mary Chain to open for them at the O2 Bournemouth on their current tour.  Are you looking forward to playing your biggest venue to date?

Yes, of course, we are absolutely buzzing to get up onto that stage and show the crowd in Bournemouth what we are about. Let’s hope we can get them warmed up enough before the sonic destruction that follows!

08. Where else can we see you play live in the near future?

We have a large selection of dates to follow this year, Festivals in the summer and of course Liverpool Psych Fest in September. Here’s how our April 2017 is looking:

01: Bournemouth – O2 Academy
07: London – Sebright Arms 
12: Brighton – Hope & Ruin
14: Paris – Espace B
16: Bristol – Crofters Rights
22: Southsea – Castle Road, Record Store Day Event

09. You promote your own Psych Fest in Portsmouth. Tell us more.

We run a night once a year called “Southsea Psych Out”. It’s just a chance for us to bring some of our favourite unsigned psych and shoegaze bands down to Pompey to tear the roof of a sweatbox of a venue. We started it last year and the night sold out which was great! We return this year in August.

10. If you were to record a cover version, what song?

I think we’ve always tried to concentrate on our own material but if the opportunity to play a cover ever did arise we always liked the idea of toying with a dance tune and making it our own. We wouldn’t want to do the obvious you know. Set ourselves a challenge with an acid house tune maybe.

11. You’ve recently been in the studio to record your next release. When can we expect to hear it and what formats will it be released on?

Yes, we’ve just finished in the studio with Patrick Collier (Vibrators, Primal Scream, New Model Army) and we have recorded a 5 track E.P that we are really pleased with. It will be released via Club AC30 in late May on 12″ coloured vinyl and digital download.

12. If people want to find out more how can they keep in touch with the band?

We have a facebook page: facebook.com/isblissband, Our label can be found: at facebook.com/clubac30 , You can also check us out on Spotify: spotify.com

Main Photo Credit: Jessica Mailey

Dave Showplug Taylor

Dave Showplug Taylor is owner of Showplug Promotions, a man who makes things happen, loves providing great affordable quality Events, Gigs, Shows, Comedy Plugs and great all around Entertainment. Works closely alongside Eyeplug Media and lives by the Sea with his Family. Loves the MC5 and Cold Beer.

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March 23, 2017 By : Category : DozenQ Eyeplugs Front page Interviews Music Psychedelic Tags:, , , , , ,
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Author – Pete McKenna

This entry is part 9 of 9 in the series Old Dog Books

01. How did you get started in the world of words?

In the winter of 1995 I was laid off work on the Brighton station job 3 days before Xmas. Talk about a depressing time for me. Back at the flat I found my old Casino diaries and then the idea hit me to write Nightshift. Sold two of my best saxophones and bought a word processor. Stocked up the grub cupboard with beans and pot noodles and got down to writing the book. Finished the book in 3 weeks and started sending it out to publishers and agents. Over 40 no’s later, ST PUBLISHING gave me an offer to publish and Nightshift came out in 1996. Job done. Well received all round, the book quickly became a cult classic.

02. Has it been a struggle getting your first book published?

Nightshift wasn’t exactly a struggle. Once I’d decided to write the book it was just a matter of getting it done. The rejection was tough to take but one thing a writer has to do is shake off rejections because they are all part of the game.

03. Where did you see the first piece you had written in print, how did that feel?

Talk about a buzz when I saw the book actually in print. Yeah there’s nothing like the smell of fresh paper in the morning. Top buzz.

04. What was the main reasons that you started to write seriously?

I felt I had something to say about the 70’s northern soul scene that hadn’t been said before warts and all. The beauty of Nightshift is that it tells the whole truth and nothing but about England’s longest surviving dance culture that’s bigger than ever these days.

05. What’s a typical working day like when you are writing?

I do have a daily system which entails me getting up early, boiling up a pot of Lavazza and getting stuck into 2 to 3000 words a day depending on mood. I write everything in longhand and then when it feels good. I blitz the computer adding and subtracting where needed.

06. What were your teenage experiences that helped to shape your later mindset?

My teenage experiences shaped everything. The clobber, scooters, good mates, northern soul, drugs and soccer agro. A non – stop riotous roller coaster. Thanks also to my old man, former detective sergeant John McKenna who knew a thing or three about personal style and attention to detail which has rubbed off on me even to this day.

07. What was it like to be young and involved in Street Cultures, what were your pointers and outlook?

Hedonistic, exciting, dangerous, diverse, you name it and it was on the menu apart from anal sex of course. The sole reason for breathing was going against the social grain and it felt electric convincing me that it was all going to last forever. Oohhh err!

08. What was that period like for you as a young man outside of the Music world?

Unbeatable, unbelievable, unrepeatable, when we were young sharp hard and cool and the impossible was anything but. Great days and nights with me to the grave.

09. How did the Media distort what was going on with youth culture at that time?

The 70’s was a diverse mental decade. The buzz of football aggro was everywhere, massed Saturday battles on terraces and in town centres as opposed to the more underground streamlined casual firms of the 80’s and beyond. Same attitude with a different uniform. The media slagged Wigan off big time describing it as a drug fuelled den of iniquity frequented by vampire like young kids off their heads on drugs. And then Granada television set the scene straight with the best documentary on Wigan ever made thanks to the drive of the late great Ray Gosling RIP. Brilliant documentary that still holds its own today.

10. What music, films and books helped you to the pathway of all things alternative?

Jazz, soul,  Bowie, Ferry, reggae, ska, the king of 70’s pulp fiction Richard Allen AKA James Moffatt, Jack Kerouac, Aldous Huxley, Anthony Burgess, Christopher Isherwood Hunter S Thompson, Clockwork Orange, Lord Of The Flies, Quadrophenia, If, Alfie, The Ipcress File, Bond, The Servant, The Night Porter, Easy Rider, Apocalypse Now, Godfather, GOD the list could go on forever.

11. What other books do you wish you had written?

I don’t but to be honest. Football Factory comes close. The best insight into the murky violent world of the soccer casuals penned by a man who to me is England’s finest. John King, top bloke, top writer and a vegetarian as well. Maybe I should think about knocking meat on the head.

12. How has the internet changed what you do?

Ease of information with a worldwide audience at the touch of a button. A brilliant useful tool for research and getting the word out there in seconds. Couldn’t do without now.

13. Do you have any advice for wannabe authors?

Yeah. Forget it. Take comfort in your day job, live well, be happy, get married, buy a house and a car, have kids and grow fat, bald, toothless slowly and die happy convinced you did your best for those you love and care for. However if you do decide to march down one of the loneliest paths imaginable then write about something you know that will appeal to your readership and I’m not talking about Knitting Jumpers From Pubic Hair and be prepared for rejection after rejection until – and this is only a slim chance – you finally get your work accepted after which the really hard graft begins.

14. What projects are you planning for the future and please feel free to plug your latest book?

Currently working on two novels – UP NORTH and AUTUMN LEAVES that will complete the Frank Wilson trilogy. Also my long overdue baby JERUSALEM which is a dark violent wade through contemporary England’s slashed and torn social fabric seen through the eyes of the main character Johnny Hodges a lifelong skinhead who goes out in a blaze of glory for reasons that will become apparent. ‘ Police confirmed that they received a telephone call seconds before the triple suicide bomb attacks in London Leeds and Birmingham from one of the three men who carried out the bombings dressed in burkas claiming that they were members of the ultra – right group Patriots Of The Cross and the attacks were reprisals for the beheading of three young men in a secret London location by Jihadis with more attacks on the way.

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admin

Boo Eyeplug acts as webmaster/designer for the Eyeplug site. Not the most social of creatures and with several personality issues, and rather exotic, eccentric tastes for obscure ‘cultish’ stuff which makes his ramblings seem even more sweetly abstract and often annoying.

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November 28, 2016 By : Category : Culture DozenQ Eyeplugs Features Front page Interviews Literature Music Tags:, ,
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DozenQ – The Orders

This entry is part 18 of 19 in the series DozenQ 4

The Orders are a power trio from the Isle of Wight with influences from Indie and Psychedelic Rock. The band consist of Kyle Chapman – (singer, guitarist), Isaac Snow – (bassist, backing singer) and Joe Rowe – (drummer). These three youngsters, hit you hard with twisted sounds that could be shot through a silent gun making a very big impact indeed. Eyeplug recently caught up with them after their super slot on the mainstage at the Isle of Wight Festival.

01 How did you get started?

We started the band up in high school 2013 April through me knowing our bassist Isaac through middle school and then meeting Joe our drummer in high school. Me and Isaac had been mates since middle school and had always played guitar together, after about a year into high school I was itching to start a band and then something came together with a few high school mates including Joe it didn’t work out with the others but I brought Isaac into the band to play Bass guitar and together we formed our trio. We heard there was an Isle of Wight Festival daytime slot available for musicians and bands from our high school and we got a half hour set of 60s and punk covers and played a small stage at the festival which was our first gig of 2013.

02 Where did your name come from, being based on the IOW how does that influence things?

The name ‘The Orders’ came about from suggesting loads of band names I suggested ‘the standing orders’ after a pub in Southampton and that got turned down but after a while of deciding we went with ‘The Orders’, being IOW based is difficult because it’s a small community for musicians, we’re stuck on an island and occasionally we visit the mainland but we will always have to return to the island thatis our home.

03 Who are your major influences and inspirations and who do you despise?

Lots of musicians influence us, I look up to bands that are interesting musically and live like the Fat White Family a new underground band, there music is very creative but very raw and dirty sounding. Iv seen them live 3 times and there shows are always mental. Also the more obvious bands of today like the Libertines and Tame Impala inspire us musically too. I hate the corporate side of things in music, always over polished, always done by the book. Those sort of artists get it easy, they have songwriters to write their songs but they get all the credit, the songwriting is the most important thing in music but they get to sing other people’s songs and earn millions. Simon Cowell and all his merry men are tossers, there’s no excitement in that.

04 What drives you to make music?

People drive us to make music, we do it to be entertaining and show everyone what we’re about. We’re not a boring band, so to go out and play live and see people enjoying themselves is great and making music that people actually want to listen to is what makes it all worthwhile. Our fan base is still growing.

05 What can someone who has never seen you live before expect from your live show?

Loads of energy, harmonies, shouting, loudness and sweat.

06 Who writes your songs? What types of themes and subjects do you deal with?

I write all the songs, usually just sitting in my room on my acoustic guitar I then bring them to rehearsal and the pieces of the puzzle all come together. The songs are usually about everyday life, being a slave to society, finding things to get away from it or sometimes just random made up scenarios that paint a picture. All my songs always have a hidden meaning within, you have to look closer into wisdom.

07 How has your music evolved since you first began playing?

Our music has evolved loads since we first started, when we started playing original music the songs were very straight forward, upbeat and Punky, they weren’t Punk songs but they had that Punk energy. Our music evolved over time and my songwriting had a big influence in that, it started to evolve into a more progressive sound with the use of guitar effects and improvisation. We got told that our music had some psychedelic influences creeping in and I liked the idea of that and started writing songs that had a bit more of a psychedelic influence, that isn’t the case with all our songs, but now a lot of our best tunes have a nice psychedelic twang to them. We’re now an Indie Psych band I would say rather than the Punk/Garage band that we started out like.

08 What has been your biggest challenge as a band? Were you been able to overcome this? If so, how?

Rehearsing was a big problem for a while, there was arguments over it because I wanted to rehearse and the others wouldn’t or couldn’t and it was annoying me because I wanted to play new songs and get tighter as a band. Getting a space to rehearse was the other problem because of where all the gear was and we kept getting kicked out of churches and everything was just getting to complicated. Eventually Steve, a very good friend and helper to the band sorted us a rehearsal spot in a night-club venue, which meant we could leave our gear there and rehearse there a couple of times a week. Sorted. 

09 Do you play covers? If you could pick any song, which would you like to cover most and why?

We do sometimes play covers, but only in pub sets or sets where we are playing to people who are already pissed and just want to hear the same old covers. If there was any song we could cover I’d go with ‘the Inception’ theme tune, with a full orchestra and everything.

10 Where do you envisage being in five years time?

I think in 5 years time, we will be eating out of bins and begging for spare change. But I do hope we’re headlining Post Fest. *(That’s a slightly smaller IOW festival by the way).

11 Who would you most like to record with?

Would love to record with Kevin Parker, he created Tame Impala, he’s a genius, he could make us sound like the universe sitting inside a sea shell.

12 What should we be expecting from you in the near future?

You should be expecting The Orders to be making a big impact. More records, more gigs, more orders. You can buy a copy of our signle via the link below!

 

Web Links

facebook.com/theorders
soundcloud.com/the_orders
Instagram – @the_orders
Twitter – @the_ordersuk

Buy record here – paypal.me/TheOrders £8.50 including p&p

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Boo Eyeplug acts as webmaster/designer for the Eyeplug site. Not the most social of creatures and with several personality issues, and rather exotic, eccentric tastes for obscure ‘cultish’ stuff which makes his ramblings seem even more sweetly abstract and often annoying.

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June 23, 2016 By : Category : DozenQ Interviews Music Psychedelic Tags:, , , ,
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Author – Paul Hallam Part 2

This entry is part 7 of 9 in the series Old Dog Books

01. Tell us about Sleeping Dogs Books an offshoot of Old Dog Books?

Old Dog is focussed on Pulp Fiction. I don’t want it to deviate from that and become just another book imprint. But Garry Bushell had this great idea of putting out 2 books with me. So I thought let’s do something as a sideline and call it Sleeping Dogs (that name was actually invented by Danny Decourtelle).

02. What about Streetsounds, whats the set up and who is involved?

About four years ago The Bushell said the music press needs a new title. Something that is about what we did then but also about what is going on right now. A voice for the bands who can’t get in NME or Mojo. And that’s how it started. I went along with him thinking this will last 2 issues at best. 4 Years on and we are the biggest selling music magazine in the UK. We got some great writers who do it all for love not money.

03. What type of stuff do you cover within Streetsounds?

It’s mainly all the old stuff that Mojo may not want to talk about – so lots of Oi!, Punk, Mod bands etc, but also we are also covering current stuff. Plus all the specialist festivals – Punk Rock Bowling, Skamouth etc, that are getting thousands of people though the doors so to speak, but will never make the pages of the mags on the shelves of WH Smiths.

04. Tell us about you latest offering for Sleeping Dog Books?

20 Shades is a compilation of short stories written by regular Street Sounds Contributors. We have Left-Wing poet Tim Wells, Football Factory author John King, the legend that is Mr Bushell himself, Old Dogs author Craig Brackenridge and Joe Pasquale amongst others. A real mix as they say!

05. What is peoples re-action to the Streetsounds growth and spread?

It still amazes me. Street Sounds is a chaotic affair – down to me, not GB. And if we are a few weeks late with the quarterly issue people get on the case wanting to know where it is. It is a real labour of love and we need help from our readers. We need people to be helping us getting it into independent shops around the country. We have a piece on this next issue.

06. How can folks get a copy of Streetsounds?

streetsoundsonline.co.uk and also in good record shops up and down the country. You can even find us on Social Media too!

07. Do you have more follow ups planned for the ‘20 Shades of Psycho’ format?

Not yet. We really want to do a book based on Garrys’ heavy metal articles from Sounds this year. Like the 2-tone one and the Mod Revival one. That will go on Sleeping Dogs.

08. How about your own Book that you recently released, how is that doing?

It’s basically a book of my old mod photographs. It’s quite insane really. I was 16-20 years old and took my old Olympus Trip to mod clubs. 30 plus years on I’m being told this is History. You can buy it HERE! Later this month I’m doing a thing at the Photographers Gallery in Soho. People like David Bailey do that – not me…

09. How will England do in Euro 2016 in France?

Quarter Finals. I’m a North Korea fan and as they aren’t allowed to enter the Euros I’m not too excited.

10. Where can folks grab a copy of the ‘2O Shades of Psycho’ Anthology?

From the excellent Old Dog Books Website and The Pip! Pip! Amazon page.

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Boo Eyeplug acts as webmaster/designer for the Eyeplug site. Not the most social of creatures and with several personality issues, and rather exotic, eccentric tastes for obscure ‘cultish’ stuff which makes his ramblings seem even more sweetly abstract and often annoying.

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June 11, 2016 By : Category : Culture DozenQ Features Front page Interviews Literature Music Tags:, , , , , , , , ,
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Author – Craig Brackenridge Part 2

This entry is part 6 of 9 in the series Old Dog Books

Scottish writer Craig Brackenridge has been writing about movie sleaze and demented Rock ‘n’ Roll since 1995 and has written for the magazines Street Sounds, Total Film, Bite Me, Best For Music, Dog Eat Robot and Mad Music For Bad People along with a number of album sleevnotes for Cherry Red Records.

His first book ‘Let’s Wreck’ was a part-biographical look at the Psychobilly scene from the early 1980’s to the 2000’s. In a bid to continue to record the history of Psychobilly for posterity he launched ‘Vinyl Dementia: The Psychobilly & Trash Record Guide’ in 2004. ‘Hell’s Bent On Rockin’: A History of Psychobilly’ followed in 2005 and was an attempt to chronicle the entire Psychobilly genre for Cherry Red Books. After the mammoth task of ‘Hell’s Bent…’ Craig decided to move into fiction as he has been a long-time fan of exploitative pulp paperbacks from the 1970’s. Short snappy novels filled with bikers, skinheads, teddy boys, boot boys, youth gangs, randy window cleaners, sexually frustrated housewives and ruthless characters from the old west are what he enjoys the most and his books ‘Psychobilly’ (Old Dog Books), ‘Glory Boys’ (Caffeine Nights Publishing) and the blood-spattered Western ‘Apache Gold’ (Stormscreen Productions) are his contributions to the genre he loves.

01. Tell us about you latest offering for Old Dog Books?

‘Rave On Scooterboy’ is about Terry, a young scooterist in North London, 1988. He’s a committed scooterist but also curious about other underground scenes. Along with his workmate Stevie, he gets immersed in the growing rave scene and it starts to take over his life fairly quickly. Things move into overdrive when they start to promote their own illegal raves but along with the money, drugs and easy sex that come their way there is also trouble in the form of local hoodlum Ricky ‘Dodgy’ Harris. As things descend into chaos and bloodshed Terry realises that the only people that can help him are the ones he has let down the most.

02. What was the Scootering Scene like in the 80s?

There were far more committed scooterists than me about but from 1987-1991 it totally took over my life. It was one long blur of two-stroke engine fumes, pilot jackets with patches, army trousers with beer towels, great music, booze and bunk-ups (occasionally!!). The most amazing part was leaving your home town behind whenever possible and going to places where there were (literally) thousands of people that shared similar interests. The experience of keeping the same pants, trousers and boots on for three days straight was also unforgettable.

03. What began the change towards folks seeking new things like the Acid House Scene?

I think the attraction of being part of some underground scene must have attracted a lot of people who had not previously been part of any subculture. Mainstream clubs in the late 1980’s were mostly fucking awful – shirt, slacks, no trainers, no entry with a funny haircut, girls dancing round their handbags to Stock Aitken & Waterman then all out for a fight outside the kebab shop at closing time. Raving all night in a loved-up atmosphere must have seemed like nirvana to a lot of people.

04. What about new drugs like MDMA and ‘E’ becoming available to more and more people?

I’m not sure if the drug was created to enhance the music or the music enhanced the drug but it’s fair to say they both came together at exactly the right time. People that would quite happily knock lumps out of each other if they were on cheap speed or pissed up seemed to be happy to congregate with a ‘dove’ down their neck.

05. How did people react to the vastly different music on offer at the Rave type events?

I’m sure the drugs must have played a large part. If you were ‘on one’, as youths of that time used to say, it was almost like an epiphany and the music, the lights and the whole experience made sense. If you weren’t then it probably seemed like a sweaty hell-hole in a disused building with someone’s car alarm going of at ear-splitting volume. I don’t think there was any grey area with the music – you either got it with a semi-religious fervour or thought it was shit.

06. Was the ‘Rave Culture’ partly responsible for the end of tribalism in Youth Cultures?

I honestly don’t know what happened but it did seem to ‘blend-in’ a wide range of punters. I’m sure there are still hardcore ravers out there somewhere but I suspect that any Mods, Punks or Scooterists that drifted on to the acid house scene have long since drifted back to their original style. I think the warehouse rave scene got so much national publicity that many people just got involved out of curiosity and then got kind of swept along by it for a few years. There’s no doubt that things did change around then. Before 1988, subcultures were fairly insular and there was not much crossover but I’m not sure if rave was totally to blame. It could have been grunge, the internet… I don’t know? Thatcher?

07. What was it like to ‘mobile’ on a Scooter in huge numbers and take over Seaside Towns?

It always amazed me the buzz that emanated from the big coastal runs. You started of with a few mates from your town, met a bundle more in the city then the numbers slowly grew with every mile that you got closer to your destination until all you could see were scooters. The first time I went to Scarborough, in 1987, I was shocked by the numbers that were there, it felt like scooterists had taken over the town completely.

08. What types of bands were popular with 80s Scooterists?

So many styles of music were part of the scene and that’s what attracted me to it in the first place. The majority of the events I attended were from the Midlands up and my booze-soaked memories certainly recall Northern Soul, Motown, Ska, 60’s Garage, Psychobilly, Punk, revival Mod and even some Glam Rock. Psychobilly bands that played quite a big role at runs, scooter do’s etc. were The Meteors, King Kurt, The Coffin Nails and The Highliners and no matter where you were someone was always playing Al Wilson’s ‘The Snake’ and Billy Ocean’s ‘Red Light Spells Danger’.

09. How does ‘Rave on Scooterboy’ compare with ‘Psychobilly’ your other ODB title?

‘Rave On Scooterboy’ is a real step forward for me, with a lot of research behind it to build up the story. ‘Psychobilly’ was basically autobiographical with names and places changed to protect the guilty. Generally though, I strongly believe that the experience of belonging to a street culture, or movement if you like, is a pretty shared experience. That feeling of being part of something is an unbeatable feeling, so this book should have a pretty wide appeal. If you were there you can remember the feeling, if you were not you might wish you were.

10. Where can folks grab a copy of ‘Rave on Scooterboy’?

Straight from the folks who are putting the boot back on the bookshelf with modern pulp fiction – www.olddogbooks.net

 

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Boo Eyeplug acts as webmaster/designer for the Eyeplug site. Not the most social of creatures and with several personality issues, and rather exotic, eccentric tastes for obscure ‘cultish’ stuff which makes his ramblings seem even more sweetly abstract and often annoying.

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June 10, 2016 By : Category : DozenQ Eyeplugs Features Front page Interviews Literature Tags:, , , ,
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ArtsQ – Louise Howlett

Louise Howlett is a London based artist who also goes under the name, Paper Scalpel Paint. She makes modernist inspired images using a repertoire of re-appropriated imagery, incidental markings & collage to create a new visual vocabulary. Louise is currently preparing for 2 shows in the South West, one as part of Stroud’s annual SITE Festival. She works from her home in Brockley, South East London under the watchful gaze of her beloved black cat, Mars.

01. What were your early artistic influences?

My first memories of being affected and slightly fixated by an image were as a young child. We didn’t have that many books at home but I remember being captivated by the pocket sized Penguin Book of Modern Art. My favourite colour plate in the book was Broadway Boogie-Woogie by Piet Mondrian. I remember staring at it for a very long time. Even at a very young age it spoke to me on another level, beyond literal representation. Here was a whole new vocabulary. Then when we moved out of London in 1976 I was lucky enough to have access to a good local art gallery, the Towner, in Eastbourne.On permanent display was a Henry Moore sculpture of a seated couple and an Edward Burra painting ‘Soldiers Backs’. They also had a huge Eric Ravilious collection. My dad was a printmaker too, so there was art in the house. He taught me how to make lino cuts and I loved the smell and sound of “inking up”.

02. What sort of Art and themes do you gravitate towards generally?

It’s hard to say as my tastes are so much more catholic now. I’ve always loved graphic art which is why I studied illustration, but I’m not an illustrator. I suppose there is a core group of artists and movements that I always return to such as early Modernism or a painter like Phillip Guston but then countless other things outside of that. I love textiles for example. I think these days in terms of new artists I look for work that has restraint & a lightness of touch, things that I find hard to do myself. Saying that, I went to see the Auerbach at the Tate three times, so the opposite also stands.

03. What have been the main inspirations in your working themes and style?

When I was younger as I mentioned before I discovered Edward Burra, I got lost in the detail, humour and the dark strangeness of his paintings. I suppose he made me want to paint people within environments and I was excited by the graphic elements in his work too. These days much of the work I gravitate to is non objective. Every so often you discover long dead artists who blow you away. A few years ago my boyfriend and I went to Stuttgart and we stumbled across a huge collection of paintings by modernist artist Willi Baumeister which were a revelation. You rarely see his work in the UK. He was politically persecuted during WW2 but carried on painting alongside working in a varnish factory in Wuppertal, Germany. Julius Bissier is another painter that is little known, there was a tiny painting of his in the Miro foundation that I couldn’t stop thinking about. I almost can’t look at his work as for me it is so delicate and precious. I love the drawings of Eva Hesse who was in the back of my mind when making some black and white collage drawings. I suppose little bits of everything filter through and then you have to make it your own, again creating a vocabulary. That is a long and continually evolving process.

04. What about the different mediums and techniques that you use or employ? Do you use modern technology and if so how?

I use a computer sometimes but it’s just a way of bringing everything together easily as I use elements form a large variety of sources. I also don’t have a studio so space is tight. I’m using a combination of found, hand drawn and painted imagery at present to create collages and I’m enjoying the way I can work very intuitively using software like photoshop. Every mark and line is scanned and reassembled to make an image and there are things that I might use repeatedly that become like little motifs. I also like the way quite inconsequential marks can become key players in the images composition. Chance and accident also feature quite heavily and I only plan things to a limited extent. I create a basic framework and often lay waste or ”trash” it, so things can end up very different from my original expectations. The basic driver is feeling that the image is resolved and is something I can walk away from comfortably.

At other times I won’t switch on the computer for a week and will busy myself making something physical or trying to do something useful in a sketchbook. That material might then find it’s way into a digital image, most things get used at some point even if they aren’t immediately visible. I also don’t like things to be too ‘clean ‘ so I’ll leave a lot of dirt and grot in there to build up textures etc.

05. What other current Artists do you find appealing? Heroes and Zeroes?

Well there are many heroes but Richard Tuttle is up there, his subtlety and intimacy. Juan Usle for his confidence. Christian Rosa caught my eye recently, his work is very spacial and kinetic. There’s a painter called Andrew Seto whose work I really like but I know little or nothing about him. Rose Wylie, I saw her show at the turner in Margate. She’s like, 80 plus years old and her work has more energy than many younger artists, she’s just always done her thing, without compromise. I also look at a lot of photography although when I think it most of them are dead, Luigi Ghirri, Tony Ray Jones, Raymond Moore, Saul Leiter. Alive? Chris Killip, Richard Wentworth. Friends of mine who make work are probably the biggest inspiration as they all deserve more success.

06. What can we expect to see from your current body of work right now?

I’ve been working on a series of prints that are quite architectural in feel. They look like a cross between skewed looking floor plans and designs for some fantastical modernist house. The technique I’m using is quite laborious but ultimately quite satisfying. I’m also making some work that might work well as some form of textile. I need some curtains!

07. Anything that you really dislike and why?

Wastefulness. General ignorance. Rude people on the internet! Laziness and procrastination, especially in myself. I find myself ironing hankies as an
avoidance tactic.

08. What about Commissions and awkward Clients?

I don’t generally take on commissions, I’m not very good at doing what I’m told.

09. Tell us what you are up to at the moment and where can we view your work etc?

I’m currently preparing for a last minute show at the Meme Art Cafe Bar in Stroud which opens on the 7th April for 3 weeks. I’m showing 6 prints and some wooden, painted constructions /reliefs made from balsa wood. I then have a show at a new gallery space called JunKroom Art Projects (also in Stroud) run by artist and vinyl obsessive Sean Roe. I’ve been making the work for this since late last year. The show opens on the 22nd April and runs until May 22nd and is part of the Arts Council funded SITE Festival, the work is loosely inspired by classical and Jazz record sleeves from the 1950s & is all record sleeve format, so 12″ x 12″ in dimension. I’ve really enjoyed making the work for this exhibition.

My work is also online via Tumblr & Instagram. A website is in progress!

10. Your thoughts on the future and things that excite you beyond Art?

I’m playing music again after a very long break. My partner and I have thought about forming a group called Teachers Pet Shop or The Incredibly Highly Strung Band. I’d also like to work with some new materials so I’m always on the look out for a new means to an end.

11. Have you met or worked with anyone interesting on your Artistic journey?

Yes and without those people life would be very tough.

12. What does the future hold in store for you and your work?

I’m hoping there will be more opportunities to show work but the most important things is to carry on making. I gave up my secure job a year ago in order to go back to making art, I’m determined to continue to make space for it in my life.

Web Links:

paperscalpelpaint.tumblr.com
www.instagram.com/paper_scalpel_paint/

Exhibitions:

Meme Cafe Art Bar in Stroud from the 7th – 18th April
JunKroom Art Project in Stroud from April 22nd – May 22nd

admin

Boo Eyeplug acts as webmaster/designer for the Eyeplug site. Not the most social of creatures and with several personality issues, and rather exotic, eccentric tastes for obscure ‘cultish’ stuff which makes his ramblings seem even more sweetly abstract and often annoying.

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April 5, 2016 By : Category : Art Culture Design DozenQ Eyeplugs Interviews Tags:, , , ,
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DozenQ – Bobby John

Bobby John is an award-winning Montreal based singer/songwriter signed to one of Quebec’s largest and most respected publishers; Bloc Notes Music. As an artist, he’s opened for acts such as Bon Jovi, The Trews, Sick Puppies and Bobby Bazini. His debut single, ‘Strong’, remained on the official Palmares Radio charts for 30 weeks with numerous chart positions including on Rythme FM; Quebec’s largest radio network. As a songwriter, he’s travelled across the country and in Europe writing with chart topping artists and is regularly writing for singers from Star Academie, La Voix (The Voice) and The Next Star. Recent cuts include the #1 single ‘Sortir de l’Ombre’ by Olivier Dion, and the official theme song to the PanAm games, ‘Together We Are One’ performed by platinum selling artist Serena Ryder which was included in a Cirque du Soleil performance and synced to a daily fireworks display during the games. Currently, Bobby John is in studio writing and working on his debut album while lining up to release his
follow-up single.

01. How did you get started in music?

I had music around growing up but my first real glimpse of wanting to be a part of it was when I was at my cousin’s place when I must have been 11 or so. He’s an insanely talented, classically trained pianist and at the time, had an acoustic guitar that he messed around with. He started playing riffs from one of my favourite bands, Nirvana, and I lost my mind. He was patient enough to teach me the opening riff of ‘Come As You Are’. It wasn’t the tightest guitar playing but after a little bit, I was somewhat playing along to the song that we had looping in the background. It felt out of this world. It was as if someone just flicked on a switch that immediately got bolted into place. Music became all I talked about. Santa got me a guitar that Christmas and I haven’t put one down since.

02 . Where did your direction come from?

Musically, I followed what made me feel something along the way. I filtered out anyone negative or who had a ‘me, myself and I’ attitude, no matter how talented. I surrounded myself with artists and songwriters who I looked up to from a creative stand point, to work ethic and just general vibe.

03. Who were your major influences and inspirations?

I went through a bunch of phases. Started with Green Day, Offspring and Nirvana. Since I played guitar and was in a bunch of rock bands during high school, Google searches like ‘Best Guitar Solos of all Time’ got me into a metal phase with Metallica, Pantera, Megadeth, In Flames and Dream Theatre. Started singing way more and it led me to artists like Matchbox 20, Rob Thomas, Michael Jackson, Bon Jovi, Coldplay and Jason Mraz. When I got into songwriting, I got into loads of stuff Max Martin was involved with and just kept up to date with what’s going on with the charts and on radio. Last little while, big fan of everything from Mumford and Sons, SIA, Katy Perry, Fallout Boy, Ed Sheeran, Halsey, you name it. When I start drifting away from what I feel is solid songwriting, or nothing really hits me, I take a step back to appreciate some Michael Jackson as a
reset button.

04. What inspires you to make your current type of songs and sound?

Among many things, music tends to be one of my biggest inspirations. Those songs that I have on repeat for days that when stripped down to just one instrument and a vocal, are just as phenomenally good or even better. Those singers that have my full attention from start to end of a song and make every line believable. Those moments live or on a record where a song has my jaw dropped from an insane performance or lyric. Seeing and hearing it done right with undeniable music at the core inspires me to pick up a guitar, write and sing more, aim to be better and not be afraid to put the hours in or start over from scratch if something isn’t good enough.

05. What can someone who has never seen you live before expect from your shows?

Expect a high energy, bare boned show. It’s me and my acoustic guitar with the occasional loop station pedal. Nothing to hide behind. No pre recorded back tracks. Just the raw music. Might make mistakes cause I’ll probably try something new that wasn’t rehearsed. I’ll bring you into what the songs are about. By the end, you’ll know me as if we’ve been talking for hours.

06. How do you begin writing your songs? What types of themes and subjects do you deal with?

Since I’m signed to a publishing company (Bloc Notes Music publishing), I’ve been lucky enough to write with and for loads of artists. I’m probably writing anywhere from 50-100 songs a year. I don’t really have a set process anymore. I’ve written songs while driving, in the middle of watching a movie, in a room with 5 other writers and insanely tight deadlines, with a melody first, with a catch phrase first, with a riff, a bass line, with nothing but a beat I make by hitting random things in a room, even in dreams where I wake up from and hurry to grab my phone to mumble the little I remember of them while trying not to wake my wife up, you name it. As far as themes and subjects, I like to write about things that happened to either me or someone near me. They come from a real place. Be it a positive moment, or a feeling someone is experiencing. I try to get the song to tell that story and convey those feelings both musically and lyrically.

07. How has your music evolved since you first began playing?

When I started, I was a rock guy. I had my Gibson Les Paul guitar, a Mesa Boogie half stack that weighed a ton to carry around, had the amps blasting and was running around on stage getting people jumping and moving. Songwriting and ‘hooks’ were always important to me. Not much has changed outside of appreciating solid songwriting even more and finding a way to bring the same energy live alone with an acoustic guitar rather than a rock band and 2
vans of gear.

08. What has been your biggest challenge? How were you able to overcome this?

Getting into the groove of making a living with music was the biggest challenge. I was doing it part-time for so long. I saved up money from side jobs and when I had enough to live for a few months, I quit everything ‘non musical’ I was doing and focused strictly on music. Was a tad stressful especially the first year or two but it’s been continuously getting better with every year. I’m not making millions but I’m doing what I love everyday and paying my bills mostly on time, lol.

09. If you could pick any song, what would you like to cover most and why?

I’ve done quite a few covers on YouTube already but one I haven’t tackled yet would be ‘Messenger’ which I originally discovered through the Tea Party but was written by Daniel Lanois. I was a very musical / melody kind of guy but this was the first lyric from a song that caught my attention enough to make me read, re-read, picture a story and really feel something even if the music was taken away.

10. Where do you envisage being in five years time?

In studio writing / recording my third album while touring and promoting my second album both around here and abroad. I’m playing live and songwriting more than ever.

11. Who would you most like to record with?

If time travel were possible, Michael Jackson, otherwise, SIA. Amazing songwriter and incredible vocals.

12. What should we be expecting from you in the near future?

Working harder than ever with my production and often co-writer, Eric Collard, my publishing team Bloc Notes and amazing record label Mungo Park Records to bring the project to the next level. I feel lucky and thankful that they’ve had my back thus far. We are also thankful to have received local support in Montreal from radio and music video stations with my debut single that got us on the charts for over 30 weeks. I’m planning to continue building my story locally, releasing a new single and video while continuing to write and work on my album. The near future holds a lot more live shows both local and in surrounding areas, slowly making my way below the border as well. A few songwriting trips are in the works to hit up Toronto a bunch more and adding New York and Nashville this year to the list. Basically, non stop hustle with lots of music coming in the next while 🙂

Web Links:

Youtube Links:

Official Debut Music Video for single – ‘Strong’ 
Making of the EP 
Cover – Fallout Boy – Light em Up 

Web Links:

www.BobbyJohnsPage.com
www.soundcloud.com/BobbyJohnMusic
www.youtube.com/c/BobbyJohnMusic
www.twitter.com/BobbyJohnTweets
www.facebook.com/BobbyJohnsPage
Instagram @BobbyJohnsInsta

Links to buy current single:

Single – itunes.apple.com/ca/album/strong-single
EP – itunes.apple.com/ca/album/strong-ep

admin

Boo Eyeplug acts as webmaster/designer for the Eyeplug site. Not the most social of creatures and with several personality issues, and rather exotic, eccentric tastes for obscure ‘cultish’ stuff which makes his ramblings seem even more sweetly abstract and often annoying.

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April 10, 2016 By : Category : DozenQ Front page Interviews Music Tags:, , , ,
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DozenQ – New Zero God

Formed in 2006, New Zero God was founded in Athens, Greece, mainly by members of the established goth/post-punk band, The Flowers Of Romance. They have released the albums “Fun Is A Four Letter Word” (2010), “MMXIII” (2013), and “Short Tales & Tall Shadows (2016). New Zero God has also released the mini-albums “Club Bizarre” (2012) and “Zona Pericolosa” (2015), which was recorded live in Italy, as well as the 7″ single “Destination Unknown/Forever Today” (2013). In between they released two charity singles, “Second Chance” (2011, for the exclusive benefit of H.A.W.C., USA) and “The Night Calls Your Name” (2013, for the exclusive benefit of S.O.P.H.I.E., The Sophie Lancaster Foundation, UK).

Line Ups:

New Zero God – Lineup – Short Tales & Tall Shadows:
Mike Pougounas – Vocals and Keyboards
Harris Stavrakas – Bass Guitars
Akis Nikolaidis – Guitars
Babis Efthimiou – Drums and Programming

New Zero God – Lineup – LIVE Events:
Mike Pougounas – Vocals and Keyboards
Harris Stavrakas – Bass Guitars
Akis Nikolaidis – Guitars
John Psimopoulos – Drums

01. How did your band get together?

In 2006 we went out for a few drinks and we came up with the idea of putting together a band. We were all playing with other bands in the past, The Flowers Of Romance and Nexus. So this is how it started.

02. Where did your name come from?

Becoming a person with zero personality is the modern role model. Zero is the new god. This is where the name comes from.

03. Who were your major influences and inspirations?

I have to admit that punk rock influenced our way of thinking. Although I can’t say that New Zero God sound anything like it, bands such as The Clash, The Damned or Lords of The New Church gave us a start. Then came Southern Death Cult, the Sisters of Mercy, Siouxsie & the Banshees and many others… We are inspired by books, movies and problems we all face every day in our lives.

04. What drove you to make music together?

The band went through a lot of line up changes. I am the singer, Mike Pougounas, and I am the only member from the original line up. Bass player Harri Stavrakas joined the band in 2010. Guitar player Akis Nikolaidis joined in 2014 and drummer Babis Efthimiou joined September 2015. I, Stavrakas, and Efthimiou were playing with The Flowers Of Romance in the past so our friendship was the best ingredient for our latest album “Short Tales & Tall Shadows”.

05. What can someone who has never seen you live before expect from your live shows?

Energy, power, and atmosphere. The dark taste of rock’n’roll.

06. Who writes your songs? What types of themes and subjects do you deal with?

Most of the time, all of the members participate. I am writing all the lyrics and give a general direction when it comes to the song structures. Our new album is dealing with a world of light and shadows. It opens with a track about E.A. Poe’s short story “King Pest The First” and continues with songs about romantic dreamscapes, outcast characters, hallucinations, or even the view from a paranoid world. I consider our new album, “Short Tales & Tall Shadows”, to be more of a book than just an album. Our previous two were dealing mostly with political issues or everyday problems.

07. How has your music evolved since you first began playing together?

New Zero God released “Fun Is A Four Letter Word” in 2010 with one foot on Post Punk and the other on Gothic Rock. That album wasn’t meant to be released. Then, a record label listened to it through our studio engineer and offered us a deal. Mostly thanks to our track “Kiss The Witch”, the album made it to the charts of an English Goth magazine for two months and then an offer by an English record label for a new album followed. This time it wasn’t a release of the mentality “let’s record our tracks just for the sake of it”… This time, things got serious. So, on “MMXIII” our sound became more Gothic Rock and less Post Punk. We appeared on an English movie and when we played in Italy, we found that the opening band had taken their name from one of our songs, “Dead Inside”. 

On “Short Tales & Tall Shadows” we decided to expand our sound adding more psychedelic elements to it. Someone told me “it sounds like Gothic psychedelia” and I knew exactly what he meant. For example on the track “Bastards” we used a mellotron while on the rest of the album we play a lot with reverbs or used 70’s techniques with flanger effects, etc. It is an album with 600 hours of studio work and I want to believe that our sound evolved towards many different but interesting directions…

08. What has been your biggest challenge as a band? How were you able to overcome this?

Our biggest challenge is making music under certain financial problems. It is the same for everyone these days. But we need music ‘cause it keeps us sane in this crazy world. We communicate with other people from all around the world but most of all we express ourselves. People need to get together and do nice things. Instead, the modern way of life is full of hate. We want to do music and we manage to do so… little by little but with love and feelings for it.

09. Does the band play covers? If so, do you argue over the choice of songs? Who usually gets his own way?

We are playing originals. We only play a couple of covers during our gigs depending on the mood. Might be “I Fought the Law” or the Sound’s “Winning”… We don’t argue about it. It’s something we do to have more fun and add something extra.

10. What do you love and hate outside of music?

I love honesty and open minded people. I despise fake people, haters, politicians, racists and fanatics of all kinds.

11. Who would you most like to record with?

We did it in the past. When we were with the Flowers Of Romance, our producer was Wayne Hussey of the Mission UK (former Sisters of Mercy and Dead or Alive). I haven’t given it any thought for New Zero God recording with someone else to be honest. A couple of years ago we made a digital charity single titled “Second Chance” under the moniker “New Zero God and Friends” and invited musicians from the UK, USA, South Africa, Spain and Germany. It’s been a while since we did that. Maybe I’d like to record with Justin Sullivan of New Model Army now. I am not sure, I haven’t given it a thought, there are so many good musicians out there.

12. What should we be expecting from the band in the near future?

We just released the album and we are planning to release a 7” split single later this year with the Scottish band Savage Cut. We already started planning for European gigs.

Thank you so much for this interview. Best wishes to you and your readers.

Web Links: 
www.newzerogod.com
www.newzerogod.bandcamp.com
www.facebook.com/NewZeroGod
www.facebook.com/NewZeroGodPages

Tour dates 2016:
April 23 Thessaloniki, Greece – Silver Dollar
May 27 Athens, Greece – Death Disco

Link to buy the current single:
www.newzerogod.bandcamp.com/album/short-tales-tall-shadows

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Boo Eyeplug acts as webmaster/designer for the Eyeplug site. Not the most social of creatures and with several personality issues, and rather exotic, eccentric tastes for obscure ‘cultish’ stuff which makes his ramblings seem even more sweetly abstract and often annoying.

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April 10, 2016 By : Category : DozenQ Front page Interviews Music Tags:
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