In the mid-seventies, Kim Fowley conceived, created, produced and managed the seminal all-grrrl band The Runaways, but the relationship soured after only a few years because of demands and infighting. Fowley's knee-jerk middle-finger response to this situation was to conceive Venus and the Razorblades.
Born in 1976 to get back at the Runaways, the band featured Venus on vocals and lead guitar, Vicki Razorblade as lead singer, Ronnie Lee on guitar and vocals (replacing original member Dyan Diamond, who left for a solo career on MCA Records), Danielle Faye on bass and vocals, and Kyle Raven on drums.
Their debut album, "Songs from the Sunshine Jungle," broke initially in England. The band was the first and only U.S. proto-punk group to chart in the U.K. during the so-called "Summer of Hate" (1977). It was a short-lived group, as members were eager to pursue solo careers.
Venus and the Razorblades was also the first group to appear live on the initial broadcast of Rodney Bingenheimer's "Rodney on the Roq" radio show on KROQ-FM in Los Angeles. The band opened shows for Van Halen, Oingo Boingo, and Fear, among others, to very favorable response.
This comeback album, "More Songs from the Sunshine Jungle," finds them a quarter-century later in true mid-'70s punk-pop form, and better than ever. The concept of a coed hardcore rock band is still a relatively unique and untested possibility, given each gender's potential misgivings, but the acute songwriting talents of Venus and Kim Fowley relegate the members to role-playing, and, like the best of actors, they play their parts well, steering clear of the hype.
A long-awaited surprise gem, sure to engage long-suffering fans of old-school kick-ass rock 'n' roll.