Today we escape the misery and mire of Earth and crash land on Planet Brutalicon. That’s the debut album name from Stepmother, a raucous and rockin’ new proto-punk project from Graham Clise. If the name sends familiar, congrats on being a rocker of distinction and taste. His guitars have electrified listeners of Witch, Lecherous Gaze, Annihilation Time, and many more. This time, Clise co-handles vocals while bashing out good-time riffs with bad intentions. This Australia-based trio also includes bassist/vocalist Rob Muinos and drummer Sam Rains. Today Decibel Magazine invites you to roam Planet Brutalicon a few days before Tee Pee Records releases the album on September 29th.
From the opening of “Fade Away,” Stepmother time travels back to the last couple years of dying sunshine in the late ’60s. Think Blue Cheer and Motor City proto-punk conjured by The Damned. The songs pop with glossy hooks and raw riffs, never losing that dichotomy. Stepmother have fun in the face of warfare, poverty, and a thousand other man-made plagues and maladies. Look no further than “Stalingrad” or the the cheeky Elvis impression kicking off the rough ‘n’ rowdy “Scream of Death.” Down to the sizzling “Waiting for the Axe” and the Dick Dale finale of “Gusano,” Planet Brutalicon is a celebration of rock ‘n’ roll escapism for fans of modern heavy rock like Graveyard, C.O.F.F.I.N., and AAWKS. Unlike some other retro-minded rockers, Stepmother never lose the grasp on their own rugged, individual spirit.
“Planet Brutalicon was a breeze to record,” comments guitarist/vocalist Graham Clise. “The music was pretty much done all live with very few overdubs and maybe one or two rehearsals. We have a no rehearsal policy; it’s the Stepmother way. We don’t want it to end up sounding like Toto or some shit. Being under rehearsed keeps you on your toes! Thinkin’ is stinkin’ was the attitude. That being said, a fair amount of time was put into mixing it. Couldn’t be more stoked with how it came out though. We did it at our bass player Rob [Muinos]’s studio called The Rat Shack. It just so happens to be upstairs from my favourite pub, so there was no shortage of booze. Minimal turd polishing; if it sounded gnarly, we’d just go with it and it seems to have worked out!”
Blast off to Planet Brutalicon with Stepmother by pressing play below.