Saturday, October 31, 2009
Okay, okay... I guess I should really pay fitting homage to the national holiday of my people, so here's something real scary for all you maniacal monster kids out there. After all, the only thing scarier than The Misfits themselves is... a bunch of guys from other bands dressed up as The Misfits! Oh, and a graveyard full of the most hellish, unearthly things ever to ooze forth from their shuddersome, slime-encrusted tombs. Sounds like a typical evening on Osborne Street to me, but whatever. WARNING! INTENSE HORROR!! WE CANNOT BE RESPONSIBLE IF YOU NEVER SLEEP AGAIN!!! PS: Should have some hip news to announce involving the real Misfits sometime next week. Stay tuned for MORE ALL-HALLOWS EVE ACTION!
Another computer cut'n'paste quickie, this strip was inspired by reading Steven Gaines' Heroes & Villains, The True Story Of The Beach Boys. I guess you'd have to know a bit about the Wilson brothers and their lovable dad to really get the joke. Anyway this one was published in Roctober #44. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Friday, October 30, 2009
Made this sleeve back in 2004 for the illustrious Voodoo Rhythm label outta Bern (in Hell) Switzerland. Thee Butchers' Orchestra are from São Paulo, Brazil and play a kinda messed-up garagey mix of blues'n'punk. I had the idea of a crazed butcher chopping up guitars for the cover, Voodoo Rhythm CEO Beat-Man suggested that I draw Howlin' Wolf as the butcher and the band listed several of their favorite bluesmen for me to portray as eager customers in the shop. The front cover was an experiment in which all the different elements were drawn separately and then combined on the computer. I drew the Wolf figure on very rough paper to get a scratchy, dry brush look for him and the background was a quick acrylic painting. The back cover is just a normal drawing (if you care to use that term in relation to my work) with color and text added in Photoshop. This came out on LP and CD and should still be available from the Voodoo Rhythm hipsters for your listening pleasure. Thee Butchers' have several other releases, including a CD on my buddy Pirulo's hip label Rastrillo Records outta Buenos Aires. They are also on Volume 2 of the South American Teenage Garage punk series of 7" comps (Butterfly Records, Spain, 2006, cover art by yours truly yet again), appropriately enough with the song Stop Talking About Music. Stay tuned for MORE MOST BLUES-WAILING ACTION!
Thursday, October 29, 2009
A couple of years ago my friend Greg and I were working on a webcomic idea that never really went anywhere, picking up on a serial that we did in our old fanzine Hip Teen way back in the '80s. I made this drawing illustrating a flashback to one of those early strips, but I guess it turned out well enough to stand on it's own as a tribute to 1977, the year two of rock's biggest icons of self-destruction clashed. Some cool new stuff coming soon so... Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Rocketin' way, way back into the mists of history for the most ancient blast from the prehistoric past yet to be seen on this here glob o' blog, this be the cover I made for issue #2 of Bad Trip back in the year of 1993. A really cool old school garage rock fanzine outta sunny Georgia, BT featured crude cut'n'paste production values and a whole lotta surly attitude. Editor Bruce C's rabble-rousing screeds against trendy alternative rock were a consistent highlight of this feisty little mag. The lineup of the issue changed after I had sent in the art so on the printed 'zine my original lettering was replaced with a pasteover of the updated info, but here you get the uncensored original version. I did covers for a couple later issues of BT which will show up in this space at some future date yet to be determined. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Monday, October 26, 2009
This one was printed in the CD booklet for Eternal Bond by The Independents. The drawing is based on their song of the same name. More on The Independents in a future post. I've drawn more for them than any other band so there are quite a few things to post and talk about. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Sunday, October 25, 2009
Had a great time last night seeing B. A. Johnston and The Angry Dragons rockin' out at the Lo Pub here in Winnipeg so this poster from a few months back seemed like a natural for today's post. I didn't know much about B. A. and his hard-to-describe music (a mix of Casio keyboards and samplers, minimum wage frustration, basement dwelling loserdom and the theme from The Jeffersons, amongst other things) before working on this poster but seeing his hilarious live show has made me a fan. The Stables have a fun, energetic roots rock sound with a good amount of banjo in the mix, thus inspiring this takeoff on the famous Dueling Banjos scene from Deliverance. I grew up out in the country (and was born way out in the country where my dear old dad was involved in hot rodding and moonshine running in his younger days) so I have always been interested in portraying various aspects of rural Americana, albeit in my usual highly caricatured manner. Which is another way of saying, look for many more drawings of inbred hillbillies and meth-crazed rednecks in very many posts yet to come on this here blog. Stay tuned for MORE COUSIN-MARRYING ACTION!
Saturday, October 24, 2009
My old buddy Patrick (veteran of a couple zillion hip garage combos over the past two decades) asked me to make this poster for an Ottawa gig headlined by The Smugglers way back in 1996. The Smugglers were a fun, high energy garage/powerpop outfit outta Vancouver. Probably Canada's best known rock'n'roll combo of the '90s, they toured heavily and had lots of records released all over the world. I was real happy with the way this poster came out and pleasantly surprised when it appeared accompanying a 10-year anniversary Smugglers retrospective in Exclaim! (Canada's most prominent alternative music mag) a few years back. The Knurlings were Patrick's outta spaced garage combo at the time (he's currently rock'n'rolling in the super fun bubblegarage duo Shanker And Romps) and Duotang were a then-popular Winnipeg alt rock outfit that I personally never much cared for. Here endeth today's reading. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Friday, October 23, 2009
The Lime Spiders were one of the top '80s underground combos in Australia, combining '60s garage punk and psych with the hard-edged Aussie guitar rock sound that all the hip record collectors in North America were diggin' at the time. Like a lotta bands from that era they are still gigging occasionally and through my connection with The Molting Vultures I was asked to put together this poster for one such show. The image is the black and white artwork I came up with for the Vultures' Drop In And Go CD. On the CD this piece was printed in full color but over time I have come to prefer the contrast of the B&W version so that's what you get. When I was a kid Surfin' Bird was my favorite tune (it still is, actually) and I often used to make little sketches of hot doggin' buzzards inspired by the song, so this was a chance to do an ultimate, fully-rendered version of the idea. When I mentioned this to Vultures' singer Nick he told me that his band often covers Surfin' Bird, so it all came together pretty neatly. Speaking of which, I just finished assembling an alternate version of the new piece I recently did for the Vultures, so as a wild weekend bonus blast you can check that one out below. Let's have a party! Stay tuned for MORE ANTIPODEAN ACTION!
Thursday, October 22, 2009
If you ain't right you're goin' down there. Yeah, you'll end up in the Devil's pot of fire. Yeah, you better do right. Sinner, you better do right. You'll see the Devil, he'll be laughin'. You'll see the Sinners, they'll be a-cryin'. Yeah, you better do right. Sinner, you better be right. You better... Stay tuned for MORE INFERNAL ACTION!
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Doubling down on Dig It! delirium, here's the first cover I drew for that illustrious publication back in 1997. This issue featured an interview with yours truly (printed entirely in French, a language I neither speak nor understand, so don't ask me what I was on about) amongst other fine rockin' features. At this time I was using a lot of old school pen and ink techniques in an attempt to recreate the sort of illustrations you'd see in classic pulp magazines such as Weird Tales. Further mystic revelations await avec fromage... Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
I drew this cover a few months back for Dig It!, a long running French rock'n'roll fanzine. I was really pleased to have a chance to pay tribute to the late Lux Interior, singer of my number one all-time fave ravin' combo The Cramps. Like thousands of other rock'n'roll trash culture mutants all over this mad spinning globe, I owe a huge debt to the pioneering spirit and generosity of Lux and his life partner-in-crime Poison Ivy. I have no idea who I would be or what I would be up to if I hadn't fallen under the spell of their rockin' glamour all those years ago, but I'm quite sure I wouldn't be doing what I am doing or having nearly as much fun doing it. The above is my original conception of how the cover should look; several minor changes were made in the final printed version. More wild stuff on the launching pad real soon. Stay tuned for MORE HYPNO SEX RAY ACTION!
Monday, October 19, 2009
Amp Records was a label outta Hamilton, Ontario specializing in Ramones-inspired punk rock. I did a lotta work for them in the early years of this decade, most of which will be posted on this blog eventually. This piece was the cover for a giveaway CD put out to promote their roster of talent circa 2003. Stay tuned for MORE GLUE-SNIFFIN' SCAB-PICKIN' ACTION!
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Back once more to the Red Planet, but this time it's red with BLOOD! The Martian Graverobbers started out in 1999 playing a rough-edged brand of horror punk mixed with a taste of psychobilly. Over the course of a few years they changed a couple of members and evolved into a straightforward, fairly brutal horror metal sound. The first CD Die Today... Rise Tomorrow captures them about halfway into their metal transmogrification. Classic hits like Hacked Up For Barbecue, Fight The Evil Dead and Highway Of Violence are heavier than I remember them being played live and feature hoarse metal-style vocals. Unfortunately I don't believe they ever recorded their great homage to Abel Salazar's cinematic classic, The Brainiac. The second CD Kings Of Horror was 100% metal, a style I don't usually care much for, but the solid, catchy songwriting on this album managed to win me over. They called it quits somewhere around 2005, unfortunately without completing their magnum opus, an album length musical adaptation of Frankenstein replete with anatomically detailed surgical descriptions researched in medical texts. I did 3 drawings for them over the years. The one at the top of this post was used on T-shirts in their early days. The cover of their first CD actually came to me in a dream, wherein I encountered a bunch of local punk rockers having a party in the foyer of my sister's apartment building. One of them showed me a Martian Graverobbers CD (which did not exist in real life at the time) and later back in the real world I convinced the band to let me recreate that dreamworld album cover for use on their first release. The Chainsaw Martian was used on the tray card of the Die Today... CD. I've recently been in touch with Graverobbers guitarist Murderhouse and will hopefully be doing some work for his new band Zombie Assault!! pretty soon. More on that in the near future. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Saturday, October 17, 2009
I was stoked to get to do a sleeve design for Primitive Records, a way cool label that has been putting out swell garage and punk vinyl since the late '80s (mostly focusing on their always hoppin' local scene out there in Montreal), but this project had some kinda curse on it. Though I sent the original art to the band, for some reason the sleeve was printed from a 72 dpi scan and naturally came out looking like unmitigated crap. The original art has disappeared somewhere along the line and as the printed version is useless I have had to attempt to reconstruct it from a dodgy photocopy. Anyhow, herewith this artwork is presented to the public for the first time looking (more or less) as I originally intended it to. This one goes out to all the shut-ins out there. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Friday, October 16, 2009
French Canadian wild men Demolition graced the Royal Albert stage a couple of times way back in 1999. They played high energy MC5-ish r'n'r with a crazed Iggy-inspired singer fronting the action. At the second show he was drenched in sweat, writhing shirtlessly on the floor and ending up totally covered in filthy black Royal Albert slime like some kind of rock'n'roll coal miner. That second show especially was a true wild outburst of rock'n'roll in it's pure form, the kinda thing you hope to see at every show and almost never do. Demolition didn't last very long but they did manage to put out a CD and a 7" EP that I know of. Local openers on this night were avant-rockabilly weirdos The Fever Breaks, amazing '77-ish street punkers The Mohosimrots and The Breath Grenades. To make a perfect evening just that little bit better the show took place on a Thursday, the Albert's legendary cheap draft night. More foamy golden memories coming soon. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Because the hardest part of love is letting go. This was used in the packaging of The Independents' Full Moon Arise CD back in 2003. I'll be digging up more decaying matter for you soon so... Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
The Granny Groper was a wigged-out Native American kid who, during a months-long spree back in 2002, terrorized a number of little old ladies here in Winnipeg by suddenly rushing up to grab a quick feel of their geriatric naughty bits. The cartoonish sobriquet (pinned on him by the local news media) along with the combination of hilarity and disturbing grotesquery inherent in his little hobby seemed to indicate that he should have a place somewhere in my wacky cartoon wonderland. He was still on the loose when I penciled this out (based on the official police sketch and description) in 2002 but if I remember rightly they had apprehended him long before I finally got around to finishing it in 2005. Published in Roctober #42. Ya gotta wonder what would happen to a mixed-up kid like this. Perhaps he is a regular reader of this very blog. If so I suggest that he, like all of you... Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Poster for an NYC hardcore slamorama featuring '80s legends The Freeze and Nihilistics plus Electric Frankenstein spinoff combo The Kung Fu Killers and (in the grand tradition of HC shows) many more. I was really into this stuff in my late teens and early 20s and it's still a kick to work on something like this once in a while even though I am mostly listening to other kinds of music nowadays. I do still like The Freeze a lot. Any combo that can write songs as great as I Hate Tourists and Idiots At Happy Hour is always gonna be A-OK with me, buddy. More soon so... Stay tuned for MORE UNSAFE AT ANY SPEED ACTION!
Monday, October 12, 2009
These three are part of an ongoing project in which I am attempting to chronicle the lifestyle of the American Drunkard in his natural habitat. They were originally published in Winnipeg's Abnormal Behavior zine. Stay drunk until next time. Stay tuned for MORE ALCOHOL-FUELED ACTION!
Sunday, October 11, 2009
This was drawn back in 2005 for the band Grayline, an aggressive-yet-still-melodic punk combo from London, Ontario. They asked me to draw an evil, souped up monster car so I tried to take the idea as far as I could, way past Road Warrior country into some kinda post-Lucio Fulci zombie apocalypse nightmare world. This was supposed to come out on Amp Records but the label went on hiatus a couple of years ago and as far as I know the CD has never hit the streets. Maybe by the time it finally comes out scenes like those depicted on the cover will be so commonplace that this will be considered an example of documentary realism. We can only hope. More weird art coming soon to help us through the grim days that lie ahead. Stay tuned for MORE APOCALYPTIC ACTION!
Saturday, October 10, 2009
Way back at the very dawn of human civilization (or "1995" as we referred to it at the time), I received a phone call from a crazed Englishman who was living in France and putting out wild '60s-style garage and psychedelic records on a label called Weed Records. He had a lot of big plans and wanted me to design a bunch of record sleeves for his forthcoming onslaught of vinyl. The first (and last) thing I worked on for him was this poster for a two day festival featuring the cream of France's up'n'coming mid-'90s garage/psych crop. Not long after I sent him the artwork he disappeared owing gobs of cash to pretty much everybody in the garage scene (including yours truly) and as far as I know, no one has heard from him since. I was curious for years about whether the show had actually taken place so I was glad to recently learn from Lio of The Beach Bitches that not only did it happen but that everyone had a really great time. I wish I could have made it at least to the second night of this as I designed record sleeves for 3 of the 4 bands that played that night, which presumably means that someone would have bought me a free beer or two. Anyhow, more new old stuff coming soon to stick to the roof of your mind. Remember to Duck and Cover. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Friday, October 9, 2009
Artwork for an international psychobilly compilation CD that came out on Flying Saucer Records in 2007. Mostly newer bands on this one but it also features a few longtime psycho scene stalwarts like The Phantom Rockers, Asmodeus and Banane Metalik. Also some cool Canadian combos like The Gutter Demons, Alley Dukes and Deadcats on board. Should still be available from the label if you wanna add it to your hi-fi stash. More stuff soon. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Wednesday, October 7, 2009
There's a long but not very interesting story behind this one. Back in 2004 Sal from Electric Frankenstein asked me to design a sleeve for the EF side of a split 7" that a small European label was gonna release. At the time the song on the EF side was planned to be Infected. I came up with the original version of this design and about a year and a half went by while we waited for the record to come out. Sometime in 2006 Sal made arrangements with Canadian hardcore rawkers Maximum RNR for an EF/MRNR split 7" featuring the EF track Life In Rewind. Since there was no sign of the Infected 7" happening, we reclaimed the art intended for that release and I revised it for the new project. This version of the art was printed in the 2008 EF calendar. Not long after I sent them the revised art MRNR signed a big new record deal and had to put all their time and money into recording a new album, so once again the split 7" project languished like a platter of moldy old spaghetti until late in 2008 when 500 green wax copies finally hit the street on MRNR's own label. I revised the art yet again for the actual release and that's the definitive version you see here. As I write this I'm working on a big new EF record sleeve. More info on that when the time is right. Meanwhile... Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
I first read the work of H.P. Lovecraft in my mid-teens, and the otherworldly influence of his amazing weird fiction has stayed with me ever since. This piece is not based directly on any of Lovecraft's work, but deals with the frequent Lovecraft theme of being invaded from outside. I first read most of Lovecraft's stories in the Ballantine paperback editions which were around in the late '70s, all of which featured cover art by a guy named John Holmes (no, not the one you're thinking of). All the covers in the series featured bizarre full face portraits of mutated Lovecraftian man/monsters, with a heavy aftertaste of serious LSD usage thrown in for added flavor. I guess in a way this is my tribute to those covers and the strange psychological aftereffect they had on me. I've never really had an outlet for straightforward horror art like this, so like most of my work in this vein, this piece is unpublished. So from my nethermost, shadow-plagued tomb-dwelling I beseech you to... Stay tuned for MORE ELDRITCH ACTION!
Monday, October 5, 2009
This was the poster for the Bellrays' first Winnipeg show. Tried to capture the rabble-rousing feel of their MC5 + Soul Diva rawk in this image. I always kinda liked this one because it's such a change from my usual style. This was also the debut show for Winnipeg's own Vagiants who went on to blast forth an impressive barrage of hi-octane rawk over the course of something like 4 full length releases and a ton of crazy touring. Vagiants singer J-Rod is now fronting the boss Angry Dragons whom you can read about elsewhere on this here very blog. More to come as fate's mystery continues to unravel so... Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Sunday, October 4, 2009
This gag seemed to lend itself to a minimalistic approach so it was all cut and pasted together in Photoshop using 4 simple drawings plus computer fonts for the lettering. Seems like a great way to free up more time for drinkin'. Thanks to Woody Woodbury for inspiration. Published in Roctober #39. More stuff coming as soon as I can get this bottle to come loose from my lips. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Saturday, October 3, 2009
Poster for a 2000 AD gig at renowned local punk hole The Royal Albert. Featured Winnipeg combos were The Breath Grenades (venerable avant-primitive synth/space rawkers), The Insaniacs (Decline Of Western Civilization-style smashed bottle and fistfight punkers who ruled the local scene for the better part of the decade) and rock'n'roll animals The Squareheads. Clean cut emo/indie outta towners Plasticine were terrorized by the crazed, violent antics of the local bands and their fans. It was a pretty funny evening. More stuff tomorrow, so... Stay tuned for MORE SOLID GOLD EASY ACTION!
Friday, October 2, 2009
Here's a poster design I did for my old friend Jochen of Fiesta Germany fanzine fame. Shortly before drawing this I had spent a couple of days revisiting the Evil Dead trilogy on DVD and that influence seems to have invaded this one in much the same way that ancient Sumerian demons might invade your best friend while you are on a weekend camping trip at an isolated cabin far off in the dark, dark woods. The lineup of the festival has changed a bit since I finished the poster so there are some alternate versions of this around, but this original version is the best quality one I have on hand so that's what you get. I'm heading out to hear some rock'n'roll on a Friday night but rest assured more of this kind of junk will be coming your way real soon. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
One last sojourn to the Red Planet before returning to Earthly affairs. This one was made back in 1996 for an unruly mob of Ramones-infected troublemakers from Norway originally known as The Teenage Marsmen. At the time I was obsessing over Wally Wood's EC work and '50s Juvenile Delinquent paperbacks (as careful perusal of this humble effort will no doubt make most abundantly clear). By the time I finished the art the band had trimmed their moniker down to just The Marsmen, and they also requested that I remove the band members names from the jackets of the extraterrestrial JDs. This I did although it pained me, for the thought of juvenile delinquents from the Scandinavian part of Mars was pretty dear to my heart. I hand cut the color separations and sent them along with the revised art to Norway, where the 7" was dutifully released on Sneakers Records in 1997. Outside of a handful of photocopies sent to friends at the time this is the worldwide debut of this art in its original form, freshly scanned and cleaned up for you this very day. More weird wonderment is on it's way so keep them peepers peeled and... Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Thursday, October 1, 2009
I was real happy to get an invite to be part of the Fistful Of R'N'R compilation series. Sal Canzonieri from Electric Frankenstein put together this sprawling series documenting the worldwide high-energy punk/rawk scene as it existed around the dawn of the 21st century, each volume decorated with eyeball-assaulting artwork from an international assortment of low-to-nobrow artistés. Due to various inane complications I had to draw and color this and my poster contribution to the first EF art book over the space of a single weekend, and considering how quickly I bashed this one out I think it turned out pretty swell. Aside from any other considerations, I was mighty pleased to have provided sleeve art for a comp featuring a track by the mighty Antiseen. This makes two Mad Martian Monsterpieces in a row here in the Rubber Room. Will I go for the trifecta? Tune in tomorrow and... Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
This Boss Martians 7" sleeve was done for Pure Vinyl Records outta Austria way back in 2001. It's one of the first drawings where I played around with computer graphic effects like the blurring on the Martian eyeball/heads. Actually this thing is kind of a weird mix of early '60s retro graphics and high-tech modern computer technology. The Boss Martians were just starting to move from their original early '60s surf/frat/drag style to their current '70s powerpop sound at this time so maybe it all ties together in some arcane way. Anyway, I believe 500 copies of this were pressed up, most or all of 'em on marbled blue vinyl. Dig around in your local wax mausoleum for 'em and... Stay tuned for MORE INTERPLANETARY ACTION!