Sunday, January 10, 2010

The Barbarellatones: campy and hypnotic

The Barbarellatones is a band from Malibu that I first heard on Radio Free Bakersfield. Robbie Quine discusses the band's music, and who is his ideal choice to write and record a song with.

Describe your sound for someone who has never heard the band.

I consider The Barbarellatones to be a Neo-Glam band, even though we have some Gothabilly, Surf and Psychedelic overtones. Some call us 'sleaze-rock', but that is only half the story! To me the main vein of the music is Glam or Glitter Rock with a twist, very campy but also hypnotic. I love B-Movies, especially the really bad ones! A lot of the songs lean towards that direction, but I am not afraid to be transparent and bare my soul either. I write dark ballads a lot too.

What is essential to every Barbarellatones song?

I love a retro surf guitar...I am a surfer and I also love Sitars, so will often incorporate that into a song if it feels right. A lot of our songs are kinda dark but playful, a weird combination. Kind of Warhol-ish? Songs about drag-queens and zombies, strung-out surfers, semi-autobiograpical! I was also in Sex With Lurch, a similar gothabilly-ish band. Inspired by Rocky Horror for sure.

If there is an afterlife and you are in the house band, who do you get to fill out the band?

Mick Ronson on guitar, definately! Maybe Johnny Thunders too...Marc Bolan, it would be super-Glam!

If you could write and record a song with any artist, who would it be? Why?

That's an easy one...BOWIE. I love that guy. I've always loved his dark crooning in Diamond Dogs, just beautiful. I would want him to produce also...Bowie's albums with Lou Reed and Iggy are fantastic.

What would you be doing if you weren't making music?

I used to teach surfing lessons in Maui to tourists...that was a very fun job. I would love to do an 'endless summer' trip at some point in my life, and go to Indonesia, Bali, South Africa, Peru, Fiji...all over the world and surf warm-water waves with no time restraints. That would be heavenly!

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