After a few months off, Artrocker is back and Cookin’ in the Kitchen returns with it, revamped with a Beehive makeover. Which brings us to October, the most rock ‘n’ roll month of the year. Halloween is about donning outrageous costumes, capes and masks while indulging in cheap tricks or treats. It can’t get any more like a backstage pass to a debauched after party than that. Dipping into my bag of sonic treats, my classic choice to exemplify this witchy time of year is “Halloween” from the queen of schlock-goth new wave, Siouxsie and the Banshees.
I like chicks that rock and I was delighted to find a book dealing with this subject matter, Women Make Noise: Girl Bands from Motown to the Modern, edited by Julia Downs. It’s a collection of essays focusing on all-female acts from the pioneers of folk and old-time country, garage, prog, punk, riot grrl and 1960s girl bands to the present. An exploration of the generational trials and tribulations of women carving out their position in a male-dominated music industry, for those who dig chicks that rock, it’s a darn good read. It’s filled with enticing music from the mainstream to the fringe, an example being The Debutantes, a girl garage band from Detroit who decided to form after seeing The Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show.
Continuing in this vein, Kristin Hersh joined Throwing Muses band mate Rob Ahlers in 50FOOTWAVE, formed in 2003 as an outlet for the math/noise rock that didn’t fit the aesthetic of the Muses. Their latest album, Bath White comesfrom the Pixies school of quick quick slow. It’s a wallop of contorted, spiky, shifting aural signatures framed by Hersh’s sweet yet guttural Wanda Jackson for the 1990s vocals.
The first stop on the Kitchen’s events calendar is Saturday, October 1st at Paper Dress Vintage’s 9th Birthday, 352a Mare Street, E8 facebook.com/events/322575898079041/. Celebrating nine years of being a superhero of venues, by day it poses as a retro clothing store, by night it morphs into a jiving music joint. There’ll be live bands from 8-11:30 and I take the decks after ‘til 3am with a psych, soul and freakbeat cocktail to make you drunk on dancing. Limited £5 tickets are available here: wegottickets.com/event/373849 Pop down before 9pm to receive a free drink.
LA Kraut/Psychsters, The Warlocks is gracing our shores on October 1st and 2nd at Hoxton Square Bar, 2-4 Hoxton Square, N1 facebook.com/events/1196907623653088/ . Formed in the last year of the 20th century with an ever changing line-up, they’re described as having the brains of Hawkwind with the balls of KYUSS and will hit the spot for seekers of unrelenting Velvet Underground hypno-stoner/space rock. Lorelle Meets The Obsolete will be the support on Saturday and The Dead Rabbits and Bonfire Nights fill the bill on Sunday.
A founding father of krautrock, Damo Suzuki from Can is bringing his heady space mix to The Shacklewell Arms, 71 Shacklewell Lane, E8 on Thursday, October 13thfacebook.com/events/1765902790288015/. These days, Damo travels from city to city playing improvised sets with local musicians he calls sound carriers, guaranteeing an exclusive performance each time.
To get you in the zone, here’s a live recording and interview from Damo in London, at Cafe Oto for the Kool Kitchen from 2010. mixcloud.com/olaskoolkitchen
Returning to chicks that rock, Loud Women present a night of badass woman-led sounds for £5 facebook.com/events/546620812184428. This will be on Saturday, October 21st, at the Hope and Anchor, 207 Upper Street, N1, featuring Guttfull, death folk from Emily C Smith, and punk-riot grrl from Madonnatron and Bratakus.
As Halloween falls on a Monday, most will want to celebrate on the weekend. A spook rock all-nighter on Friday, October 28th at London Fields Brewhouse, 369-379 Helmsley Place, E8 should do nicely facebook.com/events/559825234221592/. The uniquely caliginous driving Nordic electro from K-X-P will keep it unnervingly creepy alongside Traams, Dead Ghosts, Zombie Zombie, Pauw, Adult Books, Spectres and more to be announced, £10 early bird tickets.
I’m spinning at my usual haunt, the Amersham Arms, 388 New Cross Road, SE14 for a block of dates, Thursday, Oct 13th & 27th, Friday 7th & 21st and Saturday 15th & 29th. I’ll provide a pick ‘n’ mix of the best indie old and new, fused with dance tracks to make you shake it like a Polaroid picture from 10 ’til 3am. Also on the 29th in the back, This Feeling presents Ross Jarman from The Cribs DJ set with live bands and an indiegasm of music til the wee hours, free JD and coke to the first 50 entrants facebook.com/events/608643792640238/.