Fifteen years ago, US-based rabid rock and roll fans in Washington DC launched a mission to issue a tribute album to the songs of Radio Birdman played by what were then contemporary bands.
Reaction to the "Flattery" tribute was so positive that Jake Starr and Dave Champion were forced to package it as three standalone CDs through their Fandango Records and Nomad Records imprints.
Now well into the 40th anniversary year of Radio Birdman's first gig, Spanish label Ghost Highway has picked up the idea and will re-issue the cream as "(The Best Of) Flattery", a vinyl double LP, funded through crowd-sourced finance. The LPs will be accompanied by a 7" single.
This Saturday night show in an old and recently re-opened Sydney venue was the last stop before Europe for the New Christs who were due to fly out two days later. It’s an odd atmosphere.
Tonight’s the first opportunity for friends and acquaintances of the late Christian Houllemare, longtime bass-player with the band, to gather and share their sorrow.
It’s less than a week since his passing and the mood is understandably muted.
He writes songs in his sleep and records them before breakfast so assembling an album while on a two-year hiatus, back in his birthplace Australia, is no big deal for Simon Chainsaw, the Brazil-based power-punk road warrior. “Don’t Kill Rock ’n’ Roll” finds him in familiar surroundings, matching pop melodies with razor riffs in much the same way his Vanilla Chainsaws did 20-plus years ago.