"LIVE IN HELL" ---THE GRUESOMES
JANUARY 21-23/89(PUB FLAMINGO) -- HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA
The Tyrants of Teen Trash captured live in all their Gory Glory @ the Fabled "Pub Flamingo" on a cold 1989 January week-end in Halifax,Nova Scotia.
24 Blistering Nuggets of Fuzz Fueled Frenzy (including a hidden bonus song,Track #4b,...."leave my Kitten Alone"). Featuring a well rehearsed tight touring band having the time of their lives and Enjoying every moment of it!
All the Gems are Here....Their Rare EP,Compilation Cuts + Album Tracks.......
This Live compilation was originally recorded and released as a Fan club Cassette and Sold exclusively at their Concerts! Now offered for the first time by Ricochet Sound on Compact Disc....Remixed and Re-mastered along with ALL NEW ART-WORK(by Gruesome Gerry Alvarez) including Pictures from the Actual Shows.
THE GRUESOMES' raw exuberance and musical influences go from the 60's thru to Today and Beyond creating a Style and Sound that is Forever Original and Relevant!!
So Crank Up the Volume....and......ENJOY!!!
*****COOL REVIEWS ************COOL REVIEWS *****************
SugarBuzz Magazine Review(USA/December 2007)
Live In Hell (at the Pub Flamingo-Halifax, Nova Scotia-1989)
Ricochet Sound Records-2007
By Christopher Duda
Psychedelic bug hopping meanderings by nubile urchins: rendering past histories repetitive nature. Transfixing on Americans answer to the silver beatle spawned birth, in many collapsing structures found in back alleys. Filed and defiled 60’s dirty, dusty garage; burnt out on peyote visions and transcendental journeys.
Mop topped, stovepipe jeans and cockroach killers with projected williwaws knocking you flat on your brown eye.
Screaming hairy Banshees riding ascending elevators from the hot poker fire stinging pits of pain; landing in the waves of the Schooner at the devils tail end of the age of excess and cocaine. Turning the skeletal hands of time counter clockwise and raising the blond shag corpse of Brian Jones. Freaks! Freaks! Freaks! Enjoy the sideshow of the damned but be warned your socks will walk off your feet voluntarily!
http://www.ricochetsound.com (Ricochet Sound Recordings)
Live in Hell (Ricochet Sound; CD)
Growing up as a teenager in Montreal in the late '80s and early '90s it was impossible to not have heard, seen or been somehow affected by the legendary Gruesomes. Reader, I was one of those teenagers so I should know. They had it all – fuzz guitars, snotty vocals, stripey t-shirts, bowl cuts and Cuban heels. Although these ingredients might not have distinguished them from the wider garage revival that was going on at the time they also had one thing that none of the other North American bands had – a schtick. Fusing a love of The Flintstones, a penchant for Monkees style zaniness, strong comedic instinct, consummate musicianship (it's hard to sound like amateurs so professionally) and an impeccable knowledge of '60s punk, surf, nederbeat and British R&B, The Gruesomes achieved notoriety beyond the strict confines of the garage scene becoming one of Canada's most loved bands. This position was consolidated by a relentless touring schedule that saw them criss-cross the nation like the madcap moptops that they were. This CD captures their live set when they were at the peak of their powers. Originally only available as a tape sold at their gigs, this has always been seen as the elusive Rosetta Stone of their output – as well the only remaining aural evidence of what their gigs were like. So fork out the dough for your entrance fee, take your place near the stage and get ready to wig out to the way out sounds of The Gruesomes live in Hell! (Actually Halifax, Nova Scotia but that was never going to shift many records really.)
Arthur Cravan (Shindig Magazine UK/May 2007)
The Gruesomes – Cave-in! (Richochet Sound 2007, RSCD – 003)
From Aural Innovations #36 (May 2007)
Last issue I reviewed an excellent collection of psychedelic tunes by Canadian guitarist Gerry Alvarez. Alvarez was a founding member of the seminal 80’s garage rock band The Gruesomes. The Gruesomes came along at a time when the airwaves were saturated with electropop like Madonna and bland alt-rock like REM. It was all safe, mainstream mush for the masses. But these crazy teenagers who called themselves the Gruesomes (named after the creepy neighbours of the Flintstones) sported ridiculously long mop-tops and played raw music with a snarl and lots of attitude. It was a breath of fresh air for young Canadian music fans like myself who were sick to death of the stew of mush that the radio stations were feeding us. I remember coming home with my newly purchased copy of Tyrants of Teen Trash and giving it a spin on my turntable. Raw, crunching guitars, 60’s style garage rock melodies, and Bobby Beaton’s snotty vocals assaulted my ears and put a big smile on my face. Unlike the punk underground (which even then was well past its heyday), The Gruesomes weren’t concerned with politics or anarchy. They had the punk attitude, but their concerns were the stuff of classic teen anthems: partying, girls, surfing, hotrods, and sticking to it your parents.
The Gruesomes’ live shows became legendary, known as much for their wild antics as for their music. The band played sell out concerts across Canada in the 80’s. The Gruesomes Live In Hell is a document of one of those shows, from The Pub Flamingo in Halifax, Nova Scotia, 1989. The line up for this set featured John Knoll on drums (who had replaced original drummer Eric Davis in 1987), as well as Bobby Beaton, Gerry Alvarez, and John Davis. And while you may not be able to see the stage antics, you can still hear the raw energy as the band rips their way through classics like The Theme From Bikers From Hell and My Dad’s a Ho-Dad, as well as their hits like Way Down Below and Hey! (I use the word “hits” in a relative sense, because mainstream radio avoided The Gruesomes like the plague even though they were one of the country’s most popular touring bands). The sound quality isn’t always top notch, a little wobbly at times, but what do you expect, this is garage rock, man! This one took me back, but you don’t have to have been a fan to enjoy it. The sheer youthful exuberance and raw energy is infectious as the band rocks through twenty-three great songs that fans of 60’s bands like The 13th Floor Elevators and The Seeds will love.
The Gruesomes broke up in 1990, but 10 years later the latter day line-up (the one from the live disc) reformed and recorded a brand new album called Cave-in!, but unfortunately, it didn’t see a very wide release. Well, 7 years later in 2007, The Gruesomes are still together and still rocking hard, and it was decided that Cave-in! be given a proper re-release along with the Live In Hell CD. Cave-in! finds the band in top form as it kicks things off with the title track, a fuzzed-out psychedelic surf-rock instrumental. On the vocal tracks, Bobby Beaton’s voice isn’t quite as high and youthful as it used to be, but it still has that classic snarl. One thing that is different is that all the members of the band play their instruments a little better. They sound tighter and more accomplished than ever, but still know how to rock out with wild abandon on great tunes like the gloriously cheesy organ and harmonica drenched You’re Not the Boss of Me, the raunchy Come and See Me (I’m Your Man), and the frantically brief (1 ½ minutes!) Wish You Were Her. There’s also a bit more of a melodic R&B influence on tracks like You Gotta Believe Me and You Were Not Using Your Head. The band’s song writing skills have also improved, and it finds them a little more adventurous at times, like on the swirling, psychedelic anthem Hyp-no-tized. This is the sound of a band refreshed and revitalized after a 10-year break. They’re a little more mature, but still having a great time playing classic 60’s style rock without any pretensions. It may not sound quite as exciting as it did in the mid-80’s when it sounded like nothing else out there at the time, but it’s still pure Gruesomes, and still a pure joy to listen to.
For more information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Or visit The Gruesomes at: http://www.myspace.com/thegruesomes
Reviewed by Jeff Fitzgerald (Aural Innovations E-zine/May 2007--Isuue#36)
THE GRUESOMES "Live in Hell"( Ricochet Sound)
This band was one of my all time favorite bands growing up as a teen in Montreal and I was luck to witness many of their great live performances. They bust out the fiercest, liveliest, funnest , most intoxicating, partying 60’s garage you’ll ever hear. You’ll feel just like you were transplanted back to the time of those stone-age monsters we all know and love. Live in Hell features all the best songs the Gruesomes ever played and it’s all together, live and kicking on this here CD, along with some funny in between song banter. For those missing the live performance sounds of the Gruesomes as they were in the late 80’s and for those of you new comers who don’t know them, Live in Hell will awaken your senses and feet to the movements of the toe-tapping, ass-shaking, head bopping, limb jittering mayhem live show of the Gruesomes. Bobby Beaton’s bratty, snotty, high octane vocals will make all the girls go wild. This release was originally a tape the Gruesomes would sell at their shows and so you’ll be lucky and smart to own this in CD format.
– Samia C.(Gravyzine---USA---April/07)
The Gruesomes "Live In Hell", Ricochet Sound 2007
Sometimes I think the cool aspect of primitive and wild garage rock is its ability to amuse the "cult sensible" listener. Garage rock fascinates being both a simple and cryptic musical and aesthetic form of expression.
If you think back to Music Machine, or The Monks, or The Standells, evidence comes out... their music and look had a great influence on a generation in need of "black", in need of an innocent transgression, but first of all in need of being part of a "cult" their parents wouldn't understand. This live album by The Gruesomes, is truly representative of what I mean, is the materialization of such feverish excitation.
Recorded between January 21-23, 1989 in Halifax, Canada, this album is the rendition of an analog tape distributed at the time as a Gruesomes gig exclusive. The sound quality is awesome, and the two voices-switch fills in the gaps on the narrow spaces left by the rhythm section.
There's something hot for everyone, in case you need something "wild": the live Gruesomes are a blast! From "So Far So Bad" to a powerful snotty version of "Unchain My Heart", from "My Dad's a Ho-Had" to "Way Down Below", crossing the surf territories of "Tell Me How You Feel" and ending up on a fuzz addicted version of "I'm Down".
What else to say, a big thank you to Ricochet Sound for this vault gem that gives you an explosive pill of original garage sound.
Fab - Retrophobic Magazine/March 07.
THE GRUESOMES – LIVE IN HELL
"Somebody popped the cassette into the van’s stereo and the sound’s of a tight, well-rehearsed touring band throbbed through the cheap speakers.
It was the Stones. Wrong tape". Funny but surely the Gruesomes had their Share of drives when they popped their own tape into the touring van stereo And felt certain they were the world’s fabbest, gearest, greatest Tyrants of
Gruesome John Davis writes the liner notes on the fabled
Montreal band’s from the vault live release, and it is a document, All Right,Of Their 1989 Heyday!
Mark Lepage-(Montreal Gazette/March/07)
Thursday, March 22, 2007
Montreal Mirror review for "Live in Hell"
Live in Hell (Ricochet)
The hell in question is the Pub Flamingo in Halifax, and your overlords of damnation, the Gruesomes—Montreal's bigshots in bowlcuts, regarded to this day as one of the world's premier garage-rock revival units. Here, they're captured live in 1989, when the retrorock scene they dominated was in fullest swing. Over 23 tracks, including what constituted hits for these pioneers of the under-the-radar indie-rock ethos in Canada ("Way Down Below," "Hey!"), the band makes up for thin, tinny recording with extra bucketloads of snarling, sweaty faux machismo, ratcheted up to an energy level exceeding that of their studio albums. 7.5/10