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vicious kitten

  • cadallac man cvrCadallac Man – Kevin K (Vicious Kitten Records)

    Around these parts, Kevin K records are like a comfortable pair of slippers: You slide in and feel at home with his slashing or chugging guitar and mewling vocal drawl. This record is sized extra-large with 26 songs putting it in the realm of what used to be called a double album.

    For the uninitiated (and shamefully there still are some), Kevin K is a Buffalo, New York State raised, New York City-tempered veteran of the Lower East Side-CBGB scene, who remains musically true to that long-gone playground. This is his 33rd album of gritty, street-level rock and roll, and it’s more of the same.

  • we got a right cvrWe Got A Right – The Golden Rat (Vicious Kitten Records)

    What do you get when expat bi-coastal American underground star Mr Ratboy collides with Hiroshi The Golden Arm (aka Japan’s Johnny Thunders) in a Tokyo garage, each armed with the songs that pre-occupied their formative musical minds in the period spanning 1976-82? An absolutely killer album.

    “We Got A Right” is a record that came about through necessity. Hiroshi The Golden Arm and Mr Ratboy first met in 1993 when the latter was a member of Jeff Dahl’s touring band. Fast forward a few years and Mr Ratboy is a resident of the Land of the Rising Sun and the pair strike up a musical partnership in the electro-trash outfit Ace Killers Union

  • kevin k broken cvrBroken – Kevin k (Vicious Kitten) 

    Recorded with all dials in the red in a basement in the cold of a Michigan winter, “Broken” shows Bowery veteran Kevin K is anything but. Your sound system may be, though, after 12 songs that don’t skimp on distortion.

    Glossy production and Kevin K have rarely been mentioned in the same breath. Ironically, his most polished record, “Magic Touch”, also came out on Vicious Kitten 23 years ago. Apart from being on the same imprint, “Broken” bears no resemblance and sounds like Blue Cheer.

    Kevin K played all the instruments on “Broken” (with some minor drum machine assistance) and the production is homespun. The “never too loud” ethos and claustrophobic feel might leave you gasping for breath midway through but I suspect that’s the intention. 

  •  tonight we ride banner

    Canberra label Vicious Kitten is releasing a previously unheard 1991 live album by Hitmen DTKwith special guest Deniz Tek of Radio Birdmanthis week.

    “Tonight We Ride: Official Bootleg Live in Sydney November 13 1991” is a warts and all recording from a Sydney show at lost venue Toucan Tango. Tek guested to promote the “Moronic Inferno” album by Hitmen DTK that he’d participated on.

  • identity crisisIdentity Crisis b/w Song For Lulu –Kevin K & Ricky Rat (Vicious Kitten)

    If you had to ask: Kevin K is an indefatigable product of the halcyon New York underground rock and roll scene and one of a handful of the CBGB crew still standing and delivering. Ricky Rat co-founded Detroit’s Trash Brats, larger-than-life dealers of flash glam, and more recently a member of the Cheetah Chrome and Johnny Blitz-led, reconstituted Dead Boys.  The pair spawned an album, “Party Store”, in 2020 and this single features two of its songs.

    You shouldn’t be surprised that it rocks or that it’s on Vicious Kitten, the Aussie label that grew from the zine of the same name that variously championed Kevin K, his previous band the Road Vultures and the Trash Brats. The zine lives on in The Australian Rock Show podcast, by the way, and the record imprint has been revived after a 15-year hiatus to issue this seven-inch.  

  • tonight we ride cvrTonight We Ride: Official Bootleg Live in Sydney November 13 1991 – Hitmen DTK with special guest Deniz Tek (Vicious Kitten)

    If you were at the shows, you’ll know they were special. If you weren’t, now you can hear what the fuss was about with your own ears. 

    “Tonight We Ride” is an approved bootleg documenting one of a handful of shows that reunited Radio Birdman’s “twin guitar attack” of Chris Masuak and Deniz Tek on an Australian stage. 

  • munster timesEverybody of a certain vintage who follows non-mainstream rock and roll has a soft spot for ‘zines. One of the reasons you’re reading this electronic magazine is down to two, 48 Crash and Vicious Kitten.

    48 Crash was the archetypal Sydney zine of the early ‘80s. Hand-written (and coloured, sometimes), its photocopied pages spoke of Le Hoodoo Gurus, the Visitors, the three-piece Screaming Tribesmen and the Lipstick Killers - bands that struggled to attract mainstream attention elsewhere. It championed the so-called Detroit Sound that fuelled the Sydney music scene for more than a decade.

    Ten years later, Vicious Kitten was an offshoot of the record label of the same name and professional publication that aimed its lens at people like Johnny Thunders, Kevin K, Jeff Dahl and Freddy Lynxx. Very Lower East Side, in spirit.

    An honourable mention also to Sydney's B Side, that covered the left-of-centre, extreme local musical scene. Unbelievably Bad fills the same niche today. There were the rock local papers (RAM, the bible, and Juke) that were consumed religiously, but zines had all the cool stuff and never mentioned Chisel, Icehouse or Farnham. 

  •  ernie o 2023

    Ernie O’s 2023 Top 10

    10. River of Snakes live at Northcote Social Club (supporting Chris Masuak & Dog Soldier) on 26 May. It takes a lot to make my jaw drop, but this tight and gritty 3-piece achieved it flawlessly and with ease. Raul (Magic Dirt) on guitar and vocals, Elissa (The Loveless, RnRHS) on bass and vocals and Dave (Grindhouse, Drifter) on drums wove a tapestry of love, loss and lust that draws you in and leaves you wanting more. Check out their goodies here!

    9. Stu Wilson – As Yet Untitled Mini-Album. Still a work in progress, but (Loose Pills, Aberration, New Christs, The Crisps and more) has gone next level with his solo material, taking advantage of his Stu Stu Studio to lay down some tracks that wouldn’t sound out of place on a 1980’s Citadel release. We’re having a lot of fun with this! Check out a teaser here.