Constantly touring for 3 years, and during that time playing upwards of 1000 gigs, it is no denying that the Barb Wire Dolls have certainly earned their reputation as one of Punk Rocks most dedicated and hardworking bands around today.
It wasn't always that way tho as Pyn (Founder member and Guitarist) explains "I'd been playing with my previous Band in and around Greece, not doing anything much and not going anywhere" when he decided, 3 or 4 years ago, to pack the whole band up and taking, Isis (BWD Vocalist) and Drummer, Crash with him, relocated to Los Angeles in the US. A brave move indeed, "Thats why we started working as Barb Wire Dolls straight away", constantly playing Clubs and Bars in the LA area and establishing contacts with like minded 'Old School' Punk Rockers gig offers soon started to come in thick and fast and BWD found themselves travelling further and farther afield around the States and even finding time for the occassional short visit to Europe. "Yes it was very hard work" admits Crash, but he continues, "We all love it, it's like a job now and it's what we love doing. We wouldn't do it if we didn't enjoy it".
Spring 2013 saw the release of Barb Wire Dolls brilliant debut Album "Slit" on their own self-financed BWD Recordings, 12 Songs, incluting "Revolution", "Wild Child Diamonds", "Your Escape", "World on fire" and "Shut up Slut!" crowd pleasing favourites amongst many others.
Naturally, the extended tour of the States continued, followed by a return to Europe playing (almost) everynight for 4 Months solid, not even a break for Xmas as they have gigs (in Germany) Xmas Eve and Day, but as Isis says "We will have New year at home in Greece, our last date is on the 30th of December, so we can celebrate New Year with family and friends and relax". A well earned rest indeed, especially as the last 6 weeks of the tour Isis has been performing in absolute agony after a 'Stage diving' accident in Norwich which resulted in her having to spend the night in hospital being treated for a broken scapula and severe concussion, "We thought we'd have to cancel the rest of the tour because of that" says Isis "But we'd nearly finished so we carry on". This wasn't the only disaster for the Band tho, back in August the constant touring had taken its toll on their then Bassist who announced just before the first German 'leg' of the tour that he was leaving the Band.
In steps Remington Doll, the newest member of the Band and the only American in the line-up, "I was living in my car, travelling the States when I received a call from Pyn, would I join up with them in Germany", "I sold my car and my stuff, collected my Bass from storage and have been with them ever since".
The hard earned "rest and relaxation" which they're all so much looking forward to is without doubt well deserved especially as Isis needs time for her shoulder to recover properly, but with the Band constantly showcasing new material and Isis and Pyn writing new Songs all the time a 2nd Album surely must be earmarked for release early in 2014, and with that more Dates, more Touring, hopefully a return to the UK, and when they do return, I will certainly be there to welcome them. Viva Barb Wire Dolls xxxx.
1/ KLASSE KRIMINALE is quite a well known from years gone by, but for those of us who dont know, please tell us a little about the Bands history?
I formed the original K.K. with Marco back in italy in 1985,wrote pretty much all the material, then in 91 i decided to leave the band for personal reason and move to the U.K .
2/ How come you decided to relocate and reform the Band here in the UK?
I moved to the u.k 20 years ago ,i always loved England and i wanted to live here so i did :0). The reason why i decide to form Antonella's k.k. its mainly becouse i got fed up with people taking all the credit, re writing hystory and talking gob shite about me!
3/ Was it a Same name/New Band/New Start or a continuance of KK's evolution?
Well my name is Antonella and K.K. was my first band so i wanted to carry one with something that belong to me anyway.
4/ A lot of the Original Line-ups songs were sung in Italian, do you still play them?
We still play a few like Costruito in Italia,Ragazzi,and Quanti altri come te.The rest of the songs are all new mainly from my new album Phoenix and they are in english.
5/ With English lyrics or would they lose something in translation?
We decided to sing the original songs in italian.
6/ One of the most notable changes to the KK line up is you (Antonella) moving onto Vocals, hows that suiting you?
Antonella 's k.k. has nothing to do with the other k.k. in italy we have nothing in common. I love singing so i really enjoing that at mo :0)
7/ Are you the only one of the 'original' line-up left, the only Italian in town hey?
Yep i am the one and only lol
8/ You've recently returned from playing a couple of gigs back in Italy, how was this new look Klasse Kriminale received by the old school KK fans?
It was fantastic! great people great gig i can't wait to go back there again
9/ You didnt get a hard time from Marco B's mates?
they follow a different scene there is no common ground
10/ You've not been banished never to return then?
ha ha i am a free spirit i do what i like lol
11/ What other gigs you got lined-up? Any UK dates?
yes we will be playing the Monster of Oi! here in the u.k
12/ And you're always open to offers?
yes of course. we are always looking to play live, we want to play loads more gigs throughout 2014, anyone help please get in touch
13/ Do you have a Webpage or whatever where people can keep up to date with your upcoming gigs and news?
Not at mo but i am on Facebook and Myspace.
14/ If someone wanted to drop you a line to offer you a gig or interview or summut, how can they contact you?
Just send me a private message here on f.b
15/ I think thats about it for now Antonella, thanks for answering these questions, anything else you wanna add to finish me, er, I mean this interview, off?
Thanks for the support :0) hope to see you all soon ! Enjoy life every day 's a gift xx
1/ Oi! Oi! Mate, time for our traditional chinwag, hows things going fella?
It was going all right, mate, until we realised we deposited 30-odd years of the band’s royalties – all £37.20 of it- in the Co-Op. We hope that nice Reverend Flowers has invested it wisely...in coke, crack and ‘Special K’. He’s been caught on camera agreeing to screw young men – though he screwed us a lot worse with his mortgage rates. That old Co-Op slogan ‘We go further so you don’t have to’ makes a lot more sense now.
2/ So, how’s 2013 been for you, not one of your busier years I guess?
Are you kidding? We never stop! We’ve had three singles and an album out this year – the split ep with the Uprisers, our track on the Hooligan Classics ep and the DMG ‘Doctor Punk’ split single with Maninblack. We’ve even played a few gigs. What more do you want from us, you whip-cracking slave-driving bastard?
3/ Any real highlights or disappointments tho?
Yeah. We played Charlton in November which was a real home-town blast – we played the Liberal Club because the Whig Club seems to have shut down sometime in the 19th Century. We also played SkaMouth as the Gonads because the SkaNads couldn’t make it – and went down like Miley Cyrus on a sponge finger. Germany was fun too. The biggest let-down was the Russian shows falling through. The rest are all sexual. At our age it’s impossible to meet all the demands from our glamorous groupies (Ida and Ethel Clunge). On several occasions I’ve had to give up after just three hours. The message for our female fans is clear: book early to avoid disappointment.
4/ What happened with the new Album, that failed to materialise didn’t it?
Do you mean the 16-track Built For Destruction album that came out on Randale Records in the Summer?? (Rest of answer censored due to excessive sarcasm).
5/ So when we gonna see that?
As soon as you buy, blag or steal a copy as it has been fully available on CD and vinyl for half an effin’ year, and very good it is too – especially ‘Dogging In Dartford’ which is based on a very true and moving story. Just don’t play it to Cheryl Baker in case she sues or comes after me with a spanking paddle
(on second thoughts, please do play her it as soon as possible)
6/ I've noticed a few bands ie: The Rejects, Sham69, SLF etc, actually doing proper tours again now, that cant be a bad thing can it?
Good luck to them. They have to put in more hours than us as they’re not as popular as us or as good-looking.
7/ Any plans to schlep your Gonads up and down the Country yourself?
Fuck that, sounds too much like hard work. Someone tried to get us to play seven dates in Holland and Germany on the trot. Can you imagine that, with South Coast Steve gibbering like a gibbon 24/7? We’d have finished the tour in straight-jackets.
8/ Be good to see you out and about tho, or is it just festivals for you these days?
Too many pub gigs are badly promoted or otherwise flawed, but we are always open to genuine offers and happy to discuss new ideas. We’re not money-grabbing bastards like some I could mention. We will play Rebellion next August, and Burslem as that gig got cancelled. We will play the Black Forest again in the summer. We’re trying to make the US work again, we’ve been asked to play Brazil and Australia. But we need to work with proper promoters because otherwise everything turns to shit.
9/ The 'Underdog' Bands have been opening up "Oi! friendly" Venues all over the shop, do you think the scene is getting stronger once again?
No. I don’t. Not in the UK, although well done to Bill and the OiOi The Shop team for opening up some decent venues and putting on trouble-free gigs. Who are the underdog bands? There are a lot of good younger bands about but they tend to be abroad, or from abroad. Actually, irrespective of age there are a lot of good bands about. I really rate the Harrington Saints, Booze & Glory, NOi!se, Lion’s Law, Gesaltz, the Uppercuts...I could reel off a load of great bands
10/ Time for a new Official Oi! Compilation Album then isn't it?
Yes it probably is.
11/ Has anyone approached you about doing one, and would you do it if they did?
I would do it. It would work best as a joint release by a label in Europe and a US label. I’d do it if they paid the bands’ modest recording costs or paid them in vinyl, and especially if Lars wanted to be involved on the production side. I love the sound he’s got on the OFC album. ‘Born Criminal’ is a great song.
12/ Oi! will always be with use, its a part of the Working Class psyche now, but the 'scene' seems to constantly divide into factions, what can be done to keep things together?
Well, I guess it is to a degree, but not as much part of the working class mainstream here as it is in some other countries. I think Oi-influenced bands could make a national impact again, but it won’t be done by geezers in their 50s with beer-guts spouting tired old clichés. You have to be the poison in the machine not the nutter on a park bench ranting at squirrels. The thing about bands like Stomper and Perkele is they are doing their own thing. If Oi or bands with the same spirit are ever to mean anything in the UK again then first and foremost they have to write decent songs. I think that’s true of the UK Ska scene too, there are too many people in that looking backwards. It’s too retro. As the great sage Noddy Holder said “Look to the future now, it’s only just be-gu-uh-uh-uhn.”
If by factions you mean politics, keeping organised extremist nutcases out would be a good place to start. They weren’t welcome in 1980 and they’re not welcome now. But we shouldn’t allow our thoughts to be too clouded by a small largely irrelevant minority of aging fascists and their ideological mirror images.
13/ So maybe its simply the nature of the beast that can never be fixed?
Of course it can be fixed. There were factions in Oi in 1980, and most of them were football or area related. There are always divisions in the working class. But sometimes a band can break through that can talk to people irrespective of the team they follow or how they vote or whether or not they’d happily leave their deposit in the Reverend Flowers.
14/ So, 5 years down the road, The Gonads still be here?
Everyone’s got to be somewhere....I’m not going anywhere until Frankie does because he owes me a pint.
15/ And on that note, I'll thank you for your honest and entertaining answers as always, and invite you to add anything which you'd have liked to cover but I simply never asked about?
Cheers Benny. As well as the gigs we’ve mentioned, the Gonads do intend to record a brand new studio e.p. in 2014 and Greater Hits Volume 3. Also The SkaNads aim to record and gig throughout the year and most important I’m writing a brand new album with Clyde Ward which may or may not be credited to the Brothers Gonad. It’s all happening next year mate.
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BARB WIRE DOLLS
BANDS WANTED for inclusion on this Interview/feature Page, I'm not a fussy kind of bloke so if you're in a band and willing to talk to me about what you're up to, what you're doing and what you're gonna do, then I'm more than willing to send you a few questions by email and run the resulting Interview here for the world to see.
That'll teach ya!!!!
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