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Buzz contributors: Jeff Rey, Malcolm Sane, Michele Falk, Stephen Jaser
Club Pix photos by Jeff Rey
Copyright 2003 NEON, blue door productions
Summer's here and the time is right for the latest fat and furious issue of NEON ... Lots and lots of stuff goin' on ... to start off, in the Where Ya Been? Department: Sylvian Sylvian (the New York Dolls 'other' guitarist) zipped back into New York recently with a few gigs as part of his on-going US tour. He's playing tunes from his long solo stint, plus some of the Dolls' classics he penned like "Trash'. Doesn't seem all that long ago when you could catch Syl here and there on a regular basis ... Former Dead Boys' guitarist Cheetah Chrome was also back up on a New York stage at the Village Underground with Rocket From The Tombs. This regrouping of the mid-70s Cleveland punk band also featured Richard Lloyd of Television fame and Pere Ubu's David Thomas ... Meanwhile a former NYC mainstay, Gary Sunshine, who provided some nice 'n nasty guitar for the Silos, Circus of Power and New York Loose is in L.A. these days. He's been in the studio with (the new) Guns 'N Roses, recorded a solo album and has been gigging on the left coast.

Under Whatever Happened To?:
Robert Gordon is back doing shows. Gordon's had a pretty successful solo career, but we always liked him best when he was fronting the Tuff Darts ... that band, along with the Johnny Thunders led Heartbreakers, played  a very special brand of dark and dirty rock 'n roll over at Max's Kansas City that brash, young bands have been trying to re-capture ever since ... There was a time when groups like Faster Pussycat, Enuff 'Z' Nuff and Pretty Boy Floyd were dominating the pages of NEON, along with having their images flickering on every TV set that was tuned to either MTV or (if you were cool) to NEON TV. Now these three have combined for a series of club dates in the New York area ... Also joining forces for concert dates are Poison, Skid Row and a solo Vince Neil. (For an insider's look at Faster Pussycat, Poison and other metal bands, check out our vintage candid interview with their producer Ric Browde in this issue.)... Nuclear Assault is back on the club circuit, as is Joey Belladonna doing a "best of" Anthrax set ... And, Living Colour, who  once seemed on the verge of super-stardom, has returned (yet again) with all original members (including Vernon Reid) for a series of New York area dates.
Bringin' it back to the future, you can check out the doings of the best of the hot, upcoming bands throughout this issue, including the Everyothers, Girl Harbor, Hat Trick Of Misery and many more, but here's what's happenin' with some New York City bands that have made major strides of late:
Who could be cooler than Valentino? As a long-time doorman/host/bouncer at some of NYC's very hottest rock clubs like the Ritz, the Cat Club, Bond Street, etc., Val's probably seen us walk into and stumble out of more joints than anyone alive. And nobody, but nobody would dare start a tussle when he's around. Current Gig: The Luna Lounge.
She mixes the quickest and most perfect Jack & Soda known to man. But, when Marcie O'Brien moves her tattoos to the music, we sometimes forget there's a show on the stage, too. Current Gig: Packees
NEON Club People PIX - Summer '03
Letís get this out of the way. Iím not exactly thrilled with this band. Nothing personal, but when I saw them at Filter 14, the big buzz was just beginning and all the goth girls and club kids that crowded the stage were ga-ga. stellastarr* played an out of tune, uninspired set that didnít have a single memorable song. I know you donít have to be a great musician to do great music and Iím a big fan of minimalism and art school bands. But, stellastarr* came across as lazy, careless and bored with what they were doing. Sorry, but you just gotta put out when you play in New York. So I wasnít impressed. But, I am impressed with what they have managed to accomplish. With only a 3-song EP to their credit (Somewhere Across Forever Ė on Tiswas) released late last year (this Spring in the UK), theyíve managed to open for some really big acts, get a spot on Last Call With Carson Daly, tour the U.K. with the Raveonttes and this Summer play cross-country with Longwave. Just prior to a return tour of the U.K., including the Reading and Leeds festivals, they headline the Bowery Ballroom on August 1st. I may give them another listen. A full album is due out in the Fall.
- MS
The Mooney Suzuki
Maybe they were putting us all on with their outrageous statements in Creem. Or maybe they were taking advantage of their moment in the national spotlight for an extra boost of publicity. But the Mooney Suzuki certainly got some knickers in a twist over guitarist Sammy James Junior's boast that they were New York City's first and only rock 'n roll band - " ... we're better than the Ramones, we're better than the Velvet Underground - all those bands." Perhaps taking a cue from John Lennon's infamous "the Beatles are more popular  than Jesus" statement (that marked the Fab Four's transition from a pop band to social revolutionists), the ultimate punk statement may be dissing the autuers of punk. All in all, it's in good fun and refreshing in the increasing atmosphere of careful, career-minded bands. But the Mooney Suzuki aren't doing bad business-wise either with their independent album, Electric Sweat, being reissued by Columbia, a Coors spot being aired and more vulgar, crass commercialism coming your way.
- MF
By the time you read this, the Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs, will have released their new single on Interscope. "Pin" promises to be yet another boost to their already soaring career. The B side is a cover of the Liars' "Mr. You're On Fire" and a remix of their own "Rich". They're also scheduled to embark on another European Tour this Summer to give the rest of the world a booster shot of what NYC has long been hooked on. It's been a whirlwind year or so for this trio - signed to a major label, released Fear To Tell, got media attention galore, toured the U.S. and U.K. to critical acclaim - and on top of that, Karen O was offered the cover of Playboy. She declined - for the moment.
- SJ