Alfreton's very own sons of the Apocalypse
have just released their latest album 'Alcoholocaust'.
And Nihilism central thought it was nigh on time we
had an up to date punk rock interview. Asterix The
Brat lead singer and only surviving member from
nearly 15 years of abuse is here to bullshit his way
out a corner. Apocalypse Babys have risen outta
the urban decay they call Derbyshire, UK and
proceeded without due care and attention to put out
some rather good PUNK sounds over the past 12
years. But as yet they're still unsigned!!!! After
numerous positive reviews and gaining a
professional live rep. on the UK toilet circuit, they
have taken matters into their own paws by doing it
themselves. So as the band consider taking their
punk rock tunes further afield and maybe even the
'Barbarians', being one of Englands last unsung
punk rock exports I cornered Asterix the brat chief
Baby and general gobshite to spill the beans.
Interview by Peter Don't Care
You say you're still unsigned but you have had records released all over the world. Some punk
bands don't even get that chance. Do you consider these labels as stopgaps or inferior while you
chase the recording dream?
"We prefer putting out our stuff on our own label now, years ago we would have killed for a 'proper' record label
but once you realise how big companies are run you're better off out of it, if a label came along and said you can
have 'full artistic control' then we'd sign cos we'd get better distributation and publicity but let's face it it's never
gonna happen so it's not something we even think about nowadays. 'Still Unsigned' was written when we were
relatively young spunky things and couldn't understand why we were getting all these great reviews but no one
would sign us up, this was around the time of bands like Smash, Compulsion, These Animal Men etc they
were all signed and we couldn't understand why we weren't, Where are any of them bands now?"
Do you think your one of the most unglamorous UK punk outfits going at the moment? I mean you
dont get offered US tours, record deals etc.?
"We always have been, Q the violins, we've always had great reviews for both our live gigs and recordings yet
it's never made any difference to our status, we're still on the same circuit playing the same venues we were 10
years ago, boo hoo! We just enjoy blowing headline bands off stage!"
For an uglamourous band you have quite a few
songs on the opposite sex. Who are all these
women in your songs? Are they based on any real
events or real life characters c'mon spill the beans?
"Women, what women? All lies mate, Led Zep made it all up
in the 70's! Ok there have been incidents, but not too
many of them! Oh you mean in the songs right, 'Paula' is
a true story, 'Jacqueline' isn't based on anyone particular,
neither is 'Naughty Imelda' although the theme of the
songs is true enough. "
Whats your views on the current gig circuit in the
UK compared to say Europe? Do you still get a buzz
outta playing to shitty audiences with little payback,
or have you been lucky and played to some good
ones with a decent rider and a wage for your nights
"You get treated better in Europe, free beer, food and
lodgings, plus you get a decent wage! Overseas they
believe in paying you to perform! An odd concept I know,
but it does happen. In England you can travel a few hundred miles to be playing to one man and his dog for 10p
(if your lucky). I always say it's the audience that makes a gig and it seems 'jonnie Foreigner' shows a little more
appreciation than us brits? It can depend on the age of the crowd though, as some of the better gigs we've
played in the UK recently are the ones where we've played with younger bands who've brought their crowd with
em. The 'old school' crowd can't be arsed to get on their feet most of the time. Hence our new song 'Too Old To
Dance' which will be on the next album, plug plug - "rider - ¦what's that?!" I could tell you a filthy story about a
band who were left alone in the dressing room and wanked off into the headline bands food and then sat and
watched em eat it, but I don't think I'll tell ya that!
Ohhhh c'mon were all consenting adults on here, well most of us are! Well if you ain't blow the lid on
that little episode, who are the best new bands on the current punk circuit you rate and why?
"They come and go don't they, Bladder Bladder Bladder are a great band, (Brits based in Hollywood?) they
have that original '77 sound but can string some decent melodies together, totally retro but good at it, Guitar
Gangsters last album was a belter too, again very retro sounding but class songs, I think the scene these days
is over populated with mediocre bands, a lot of it sounds like punk songwritting by numbers, there are a lot of
dedicated and decent folk in many contemporary punk bands but I can't say many of em thrill me? Iâ€™m only
Have you discovered any NEW bands that are gonna make an impact in the near future?
"No, there's a band from Leeds called the Longshots who play yer yanky pop punk very well, dressed up like
the Jam and have plenty of energy but then again there's tons of Green Day wannabies aren't there? I do
sound a pessimistic fucker don't!"
Pessimism resides on this site in large quantity's I'm afraid. And that why I gotta ask has British punk
rock really become a satellite of chancers and inferior punk rock, instead of the groundbrealking
pioneers of yore? How come we don't lead the world any more and have to look to places like the
States for the new exciting acts?
Yes there are some 'inferior' punk bands here but what new and
exciting yank acts are we talking about? Green day? I love the
genre of music we call punk rock but I don't love every punk rock
band. I think the trouble is we all will forever walk in the shadows
of the original bands, Pistols, Ramones, Clash etc.
Naahhh not Green Day I'm referring too The Briefs from
Seattle, they're new, exciting and classic punk rock with a
fresh sound! Check em out when you get chance. OK
what's the burning question you wished you could've
asked Joey Ramone before he died? I know the Ramones
are a big fave but were the Ramones better than the
"I wouldn't have asked him owt; I'd have just praised him into embarrassment. It's all so sad about that band,
seems they worked their bollox off for 20 years to die before enjoying their retirement, apart from silly Dee Dee
(self inflicted) Were they better? Well they were more influential musically but in terms of making a difference
socially probably not! While the Pistols became a world wide phenomenon and the figurehead of 'punk
rock' the Ramones earned themselves cult status, there's no point arguing, they were both fucking brilliant
bands with interesting characters in their ranks and both wrote brilliant songs ."
Thats true! Errrr what's the fixation with cops? I noticed you got about 3 songs to my knowledge
dealing with the boys in blue?
"No fixation, I hate bands who think they have to have a song about the police to appear punky, I often joke
about it on stage, our song 'cops 'n' robbers' is a true story about a feller who out of desperation help up a bank
with a toy gun, I just thought it sounded like a kid playing 'Cops 'n' robbers' hence the title, it's not about the
police as such, 'White Nigga' is though. From my experience I've never met a friendly policeman, that particular
song is about the mentality of 'some' of the bobbies on the beat, not all of em' and the song ends with "I don't
believe ACAB" I justify this song by saying that unless you're a racist copper it shouldn't offend you? You said
3? What's the other one then? "
Hmmm I must've been thinking of your '999' track? Any idea how come you get so many positive
reviews and still that illusive deal with a label ain't on the horizon?
"No, never understood that one? You would just assume if enough people say you're a good band eventually
heads would turn but it's never happened and like I said it's not something we even think about these days?"
Has your website bought you many new fans?
"It's brought a load back out from the woodwork it has, folk who've found us out in cyberspace telling us how
they bought our first single 12 years ago, stuff like that! It's a good way to promote your band although we don't
actually take it too seriously, most sites are set up by bands wanting to promote themselves to a better place
where as ours is just a piss about really, it tells you all you need to know, but after 15 years we're not gonna try
to come over all pretentious and present ourselves as 'the next big thing'. www.apocalypsebabys.co.uk is just a
place to visit for a giggle and find out where our next gig is. "
And what about your zine (Blitzkrieg Bop) is it a
labour of love and how do you manage to fit in the
time to run that and a band?
"Easy, I don't watch telly; I sit at the pc tapping away
writing up me punk rock zine! I love this music and I
wanted to ask bands the questions I want answering,
plus I was sick of reading sycophantic reviews by editors
only interested in receiving free stuff from labels, 4
pages telling you how great every release on Captain Oi
is? So I started the zine. It don't conflict with Apocalypse
Babys interests at all, a bit awkward playing a gig with a
band you've just slagged off though Tee Hee! And
amazing how defensive some groups get when you've
given their record a pasting! "
Whats your zine all about? I read one review
somewhere that it nicks reviews outta kerrang!
I aint read a copy YET so tell me I'm wrong?
Nah, I write me own reviews, which twat said that? I
started the zine cos there are too few about and zines
are the only way to hear about new punk bands in this
country anyway. I love me punk rock and wanted to ask
me own questions so I started Blitzkrieg Bop.
Do you think you can really make it to America
intact or is it still a wild dream? I'm living proof
it can be done on the dole and with a criminal
We'd like to think so, we've been offered it before
but for one reason and another couldn't make it, this
year we hope to make it happen, like everything it's all
down to money so we've a bit of a savings plan going, I'd prefer to tell you we've been rather than we're going!!!
How did your Italian trip go?
Italy was great, but we nearly didn't make that one either! Got absolutely hammered the night before and I was
the only one to set my alarm! We ended up having 28 mins to drive 8 miles, park the car, check in and board
the plane! We were belting down these country lanes to Stanstead airport at six in the morning pissed as fuck
Gizza (drummer) behind the wheel with only one lense in his shades, face stuck to the windscreen to see where
we're going, what a fucking sight, luckily they held open the check-in desk for us and we eventually ran through
the airport down the tunnel and onto the plane taking any seat we could we fucking stunk! Shit for brains or wot
eh? When we got to Genoa they naturally pulled us to one side and searched everything then took our bass
player and gave him the rubber glove treatmentâ€¦we were pissing ourselves 'you won't find Bin Laden in there'
The first gig was cancelled which gave us more time to drink and spent the first day round Genoa on the
Hogarden (milky beer) and insulting the food, fucking 'pesto' indeed! Then the gig, which was basically a squat,
which looked like steptoes back yard! We fucked off to another bar and when we got back they'd transformed
this place into a venue with one of the biggest stages we've ever played on, complete with a coloured light show
and drum riser, it was well impressive! But then we got a bit apprehensive as these skinheads started to file in!
When we played they were up on the stage singing 'I don't want to be a nazi'? Turned out they were 'communist
skinheads', which was a new one on me? After the show we couldn't get rid of em, dead friendly, weird?
We went down really well and got asked back which we hope to do later this year depending on what else we've
got on the cards? But it was more laughs at the airport with Jools (Apocalypse Babys resident drunk) as the
promoters dog pissed on his leather earlier that morning and he fucking stunk at check-in where he handed his
passport over, there was about 4 of em looking at his picture and looking back at Jools, eventually they called
over some important looking feller with a big gun who asked why it was wet? We were rolling about the floor as
they chucked it back at him calling him a disgusting so and so.."carry on AB's eh!"
Is Darren Russell (Rebellion promoter) a complete slimy toad doing favours for the bands/mates he
likes or is it all business?
"Crikey, that's you off the guest list then eh? Well I've heard that one a few times, all I can say is obviously he's
got to put on the bands who attract a crowd but I think he should perhaps vet some of the smaller bands he
puts on? Being at least able to entertain a crowd slightly would seem a minimum requirement? We have played
two HITS festivals, both times we've been the 'PA testers' (first band on) and both occasions we've pulled in a
sizeable audience and had a good gig, (well as good as it can get for 2 O'clock in an afternoon!). We've then
stayed around to watch the following afternoon bands play to an ever dwindling crowd and sparse applause and
can only presume they must be owed a favour or summat coz they surely can't get on the bill for any other
reason? And I've never actually met Daz Russell, I've met Jennie and she gave me a kiss so we like her!"
I've Never been on any of his guestlists mate. I'm one of the few unsavory zinewriters who still pay
into gigs, my name ain't Lazza Ogden Y'know! I think thats about it, so do you wanna tell us your
favourite Apocalypse Babys track you think the world should hear at least once before you fuck-off?
"Well like everyone who writes songs its always the
last one you wrote which is your favourite, this is not a
cliche it's true, it's hard to get excited by songs you
wrote years ago, even though we still play tracks off the
first couple of albums live today, so I'll plug the new
album and tell everyone to go buy 'Alcoholacaust' as
they're my favourite tracks at the minute?"
Well if you wanna buy 'Alcoholocaust' I also strongly
recommend their 7" Plus!' compilation album that gives
you all the best tracks from the Apocalpyse Babys
Contact Asterix or visit their website here at...