Barb Wire Dolls, Young Royals, Owl, Fat City Reprise

Barb Wire Dolls, Young Royals, Owl, Fat City Reprise and I Will Never Be The Same
The Viper Room, The Sunset Strip
West Hollywood, CA
October 17, 2011
By Victoria Joyce
Photography by Mila Reynaud

FaceBooked like crazy, The Barb Wire Dolls are doing a Monday night residency at the Viper during Rocktober 2011. Lovely lead singer, Isis Queen lives on her Smart Phone. We lost count of the reminders. (Attention rookies: promote your gigs!) Hosted by Diva Dayle Gloria, we were getting the message from all sides – do not miss tonight’s show.

Early bird start – the Dolls went on a 8:15p and followed by four righteous bands; The Young Royals, Owl, Fat City Reprise and I Will Never Be The Same. Loud and clear, be there!

The Viper was bling’ed out in full Halloween regalia. The DJ booth decked out in tiny orange lights and oversized skulls dot the booths with the required medieval chains hanging from the ceiling. Trick or treat.

Bigger than life, The BW Dolls have made Los Angeles their new home and plan to take over the world. You’ve been warned. Fully blown out in outrageous stage personas and explosive songs, the quartet from Greece puts on a hell of a show. A real Rock Opera.

With a shock of chopped platinum blonde hair, her royal highness, Ms. Queen made her fashion statement with turquoise spandex pants under a black fish net mini and a bra made from yellow plastic “caution” tape.  Love the look. Her performance is frightening and ferocious, counting off every song with “one, two, three, four” with the fury of the Ramones.

Backed with Pyn Doll on guitar, the aptly named Voodoo Doll on bass and the amazing Krash Doll banging the drums the Barbs are unstoppable. Big finale: “F*ck The Pussies” is a filthy and beautiful, raunchy anthem that sits somewhere between “Street Fighting Man” and “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap” that brought an energy to the club some thought long gone.

Hanging out at the bar we complimented a fellow rocker on his cool jacket emblazoned with a Kinks appliqué. Fans of Ray Davies and The Kinks bond immediately. “Everbody has a little Kink in them.”  Handsome Ric Collins was on hand to support his bass player Gabe in The Woolly Bandits, who doubles with the Dolls.

Getting some serious rock scoop du jour – Veteran rocker Collins formerly played with Sky Saxon of the Seeds in his last days. Gasp!! Further The Woolly B’s lead singer, Mrs. Ric, the stunning Christa Collins was fresh from The X Factor where she wow’ed Simon and company. Christa auditioned with “These Boots Are Made for Walking” which has never aired – but friends of Rodney Bingenheimer may change that. We can only hope. There is also a documentary of the Seeds in the making using some of Rik’s own footage. Watch this space.

Next band up on the Viper stage was The Young Royals who wow’ed us. “They’ve been playing for me for years,” says Dayle. This foursome brings a punked edge to classic blues rock. Kind of a Buzzcocks meets Zepplin thing. Very polished in their appearance, neat jeans with leather jackets over shirts with long sleeves, old school rock elegance.

Excellent lead singer, Erick Bradley looks like a young Todd Rundgren and delivers songs with precision and abandon. No nonsense. And he is not married to Meatloaf’s daughter as previously reported. “But I did play in her band for a bit Her name is Pearl, she is married to Scott Ian from Anthrax. He was in her band, as was Eric Leiderman…Ah, the incestuous world of Hollywood Rockbands!!

The Royals have a big sound with quirky back up vocals from Jason Saracco on the other guitar and Brant Biles on bass. Eric Leiderman plays the drums with a lot of splashy flash shaking things up with syncopation. There is a lot of bang for the buck here. Break out song; “You Can’t See The Sunrise” has pulsing bass and drums and swirling power chords with backed off vocals bringing a quiet texture to a big, big sound. Niiiice.

Dayle looked down from the DJ booth and noted, “this is a great night.” She would know.

We said “hi” to Jody of the Shakers cruising the club and handing out flyers for The Shakers CD Release Show at the Viper on November 5th. Mark your calendars, kiddies.  Jody was also pretty proud of her gig of back up singer on “Dancing With the Stars.” Look for the girl with pink hair.

DJ Dayle G played H’ween themed rock between sets with some of our very best favorites; “Fire” by The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, “Highway to Hell,” the beloved AC/DC and “Witchy Woman” by the Eagles. “Is that your song?” asked
bartender Tommy Black. Dayle yelled back “yeah.” “Bitchy Woman?” asked Tommy twice? (She’s laughing right? Seriously, Dayle’s laughing, right?) It was a great night.

Owl took the stage next. OK, this is new, Grunge with a classical spin, this trio is sinister and dark but dressed sharp. Lead singer, Chris Wyse looks like Kurt C with this wispy blond hair and goes back and forth between bass guitar and stand up bass played with a bow giving it a cello sound while he spits out lyrics with a controlled snarl. Band mates, Jason Achilles Mezilis on guitar never looks up but the severe concentration is anything but shoe-gazing. Drummer Dan Dinsmore is from the machine gun School of Rock and plays it sharp and fast. Break out song: “Pusher.” Gorgeous vocals.

Fat City Reprise was up next. Four guys from Philly that know what they are doing. Straight ahead rock that reminds you of why you love this music. Chili Peps slash Pearl Jammy soulful stuff played with conviction and honesty. God, we
hate posers. Frankie Pedano on lead vocals and keyboards is backed by Jimmy Mchugh on guitar, Kevin Alvey on bass with Taylor Wade on drums.

We were toast by midnight and regretfully missed I Will Never Be The Same. Super bummer cuz this was their CD Release show. Go to iTunes and check them out. We know the drummer Rich from the Mulhollands (excellent band) and heard from several reliable sources (Viper bartender Skye) that this band was not to be missed. Oh well, I owe you one.  (That would be a great name for a band – I Owe You One. )