Sleaze Round-up: August 2015

Sleazegrinder on new releases from Gloria Volt, Frank, Baby Jesus, Maniacs On Wheels and Sonic Death

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Gloria Volt: Recharged

The other day I was at some show and there was a chick in a jumpsuit standing behind a keyboard while screaming into a red plastic toy telephone. She was using it was a microphone. A couple of weeks before that, I was at another show where a guy in a crumpled suit and a gray Mark Twain wig asked the engineer to “Turn my phone way up!” because that’s what he was using for his band. What I’m saying is that rock is in crisis. Luckily, Gloria Volt has the cure./o:p

If you’re Swiss, like they are, Gloria Volt are a sorta-supergroup, littered as they are with members of Lost Purity, Trans-Martha and Hukedicht. But if you’re not Swiss, don’t worry about it – this album is still going to seem pretty super to you.

Recharged is pure no-bullshit, denim-demon hallelujah rock’n’roll, the kind of high-flying, hard-partying riffola that teenage dirtbag dreams are made of. How’s it sound? Motherfucker, how’s it supposed to sound? Like AC/DC rolling around drunk on the floor, that’s how. (710) /o:p

Frank: Tattoos And Booze

Nobody in the band is named Frank. Maybe Frank is not a guy, but an idea. And if the idea is to play sweat-soaked arena metal, then Frank is absolutely nailing it. Swedish dudes going for big, meaty, expansive hard-rock in the vein of, you know, whatever band John Sykes is currently in. Million-dollar jams on a thousand-dollar budget. (610)

Baby Jesus: Self-titled

This basically sounds like the first half-hour of a house party at the rim of hell, right before tentacled demons show up to eat everybody’s souls. It’s apocalyptic garage punk bashed out with a manic urgency, every tambourine shake a scream for help, every howl a desperate plea for mercy. Sweden is clearly full of monsters. (710)

Maniacs On Wheels: Self-titled

Saw this and figured, no way are these guys gonna live up to their name, never mind the title of the opening track, Blood Soaked Mountain. I mean, if bands got gold stars just for naming things, Maniacs On Wheels would have a wheelbarrow full of gold stars. Alas, it’s basic, meat n’ potatoes stoner rock. Not bad, but definitely not maniacal. (510)

Sonic Death: Witch

Witch is bass-heavy, low-fi psychedelic horseshit with a grimy basement-occult edge. I sorta feel like this is what Too Fast For Love would’ve sounded like if Nikki and the rest of the Crüe gang had grown up in the icy hell of St Petersburg with nothing but old copies of Creepy magazine to keep them occupied. Spooky as fuck. (610)/o:p


Came from the sky like a 747. Classic Rock’s least-reputable byline-grabber since 2003. Several decades deep into the music industry. Got fired from an early incarnation of Anal C**t after one show. 30 years later, got fired from the New York Times after one week. Likes rock and hates everything else. Still believes in Zodiac Mindwarp and the Love Reaction, against all better judgment.