We were tempted to check out original glamsters The Sweet (well, one of 'em) at the Echoplex last Thursday, but a fresher batch of foxes on the run had us hopping around Hollywood instead.
Amid the stubbly faces, dumb t-shirts and quirky nerd looks all over rock stages these days, there's a definite dearth of sex and glamour. (Pop music, yes; rock music, no). On a local level, few bands have the balls to dress-up, peacock-out and schlock shit up.
Last night, we caught three outlandish, unabashedly sexy bands that are a major exception. These acts renew our enthusiasm in rock n' roll showman-(and woman)-ship. They take chances. They dare to make us smile or seduce us, or both. They're bringing “glam” back, though in different ways and genres. In fact, they've inspired us to actively search out swagger and spectacle on stage again. We will blog our continuing search right here on West Coast Sound, so check back.
And the first three bands to make our “Wham, Bam, Thank You Ma'am” hot list are:
Gorgeous Asian girls in cutesy get-ups rockin' out. What's not to love/lust? Self-described as “Hello Kitty on Acid,” the Harajuku-ish hotties are admittedly all about the visual package for the most part, but they've got a sonic sass appeal as well. The rock is more like rock candy (think Katy Perry or The Go-Gos) and the dancier stuff is more generic than say Gaga, though with the right producer, there's potential for more.
Their CD, Dirty In Pink, is fluffy fun, and the sassy come-ons and catchy beats have made for fitting backdrop placement to reality TV's escapist settings on The Hills and The Bad Girls Club (natch).
The gals were arguably the high point of the RAWArtists Fashion Show last night at Playhouse. The runway -and dancefloor- was hoochie central, and though Pink were in skimpy togs too, they brought a more flashy, less trashy feel to the event.
Conquistador slays the stage when it comes to campy, crazy, mad-funky performance. Their motto is “The Band. The Brand. The 'Stache,” and singer Alexander Antebi (a Doug Henning lookalike, but more macho) has a curled lip-do that's truly a thing of wonder. But don't let that deter you. Mustaches might be ubiquitous in hispterville, but AA's been rocking his fuzz for years and his is award winning: he took “The World Beard & Mustache Championship in '07.”
The band brought its meld of Love Boat disco beats, Zappa-flaired psychedelia and Bowie glam rock to the 3 Clubs last night and if the vivacious sounds and charismatic frontman weren't enough, there was more. A lot more. Foxy backup singers. Holly Lovecat (of Mynx, an act we'll surely be covering in upcoming sexy band blogs) on bongos. Mad lights surrounding the band. And last but not least, fabulously coordinated outfits. Last night was white night. Let Conquistador conquer your heart at 3 Clubs all month long. The band's residency runs through Feb. 24.
They're great self-promoters and they 've got the art of guyliner down. But like the golden gods they're obviously inspired by, Hammered Satin are not exactly punctual. Which was a very good thing for us last night, as we were able to go from Playhouse to 3 Clubs to Green Door and still catch their full show at 1 a.m. We've been amused by Swedish singer Noah Wallace since his days in the similarly Dollsy S'cool Girls, and we're glad to see him sticking with the androgynous '70's sleazester guise. Cant really imagine him doing anything else. Satin are surprisingly tight considering Wallace's wacky, all-over-the- place show antics (and since last night's party called “This Bitch” was kind of empty, he had room to floor and amp hump, as well as crawl, roll and even run around and knee slide). It may not be the thing right now, but these guys are reverent to the retro-decadence of hot pants and platforms-era glam rock and we respect that.
Read more about the RAW Artists show at Playhouse, the 3 Clubs band nights, and “This Bitch” at Green Door in this next week's Nightranger wrap-up. More pics in next week's slideshow.