Interview: Tim Louie- Rahway bassist

Interview by Anselm Anderson

Rambling Man's Reviews returns with the first of many interviews by speaking with Chigger A.K.A Tim Louie, the Rahway bassist. The band have recently released 'Rocketship', the latest of several singles from the band.

I grabbed an opportunity to speak with the bassist about the new single, their upcoming EP, and which famous rock star came up with the band name.

Please scroll down to read the full interview.

Interview with Anselm from Rambling Man.

Good morning, could you introduce yourself to the readers?

Good morning! My name is Chigger a.k.a. Tim Louie and I’m the bass player for the band Rahway.

Could you tell me about Rahway and how they came to be?

Rahway was started by the brothers, David (guitars) and Steve (drummer) Cardenas. They used to be
called Sun until producer Jack Douglas, who was also producing Aerosmith at the time, let Aerosmith
frontman Steven Tyler listen to a few tracks. Steven Tyler dug the songs and asked the band’s name.
He thought Sun was terrible and asked where the band was from. Jack Douglas responded with
“Rahway, NJ.” Steven Tyler said, “Why don’t they just call the band Rahway?” So, the name stuck
through quite a few singers until they rescued singer Nick Hade from the obscurities of the Jersey
music scene. When their original bass player decided to leave the band for Florida, the brothers
enlisted an old friend to fill out the bottom end…..ME! Now, they won’t let me leave!

You are described as ‘The Slumlords of New Jersey, could you elaborate further on what that
means for Rahway?

The name just seemed to come up in another interview like this one and I used the moniker to
describe the band and it kind of stuck. We started using it for everything. Our producer, Mike
Orlando said, “Why don’t you just title the CD Slumlords of New Jersey?” So, we just went with it.
Plus, if you really knew the band, we are kind of “slumlordy,” so the moniker kind of fits!

Your music is best described as ‘Industrial’ and has been compared to bands like Godsmack,
Motley Crue and Led Zeppelin, how would you describe your sound?

I don’t know if I would say Industrial. When I think of Industrial, I think of bands like Ministry, Static
X, Fear Factory, etc. We like that we fit in line with Godsmack, Motley and Zep. Those are our
influences. I think our sound really makes all body parts move, so I like to call it Body Rock! But if I
had to pick, we’re just a rock ‘n’ roll band.

Rahway recently released ‘Rocketship’, what can you tell readers about the meaning behind the

There are no hidden meanings behind our songs. We like to let our listeners, fans, friends, family, and
whoever comes up with their own meanings for our songs. What I think “Rocketship” is about is following your dreams, forgetting the past, and breaking through to bigger things.

Your songwriting has been described as “innovative and Ever-Revolving", what can you tell me
about it, and, on ‘Rocketship’?

“Innovative and Ever-Revolving”? Hahahaha! Not sure about that! We’re definitely not reinventing
the wheel. Our drummer, Steve usually comes in with riff ideas that he hums to his brother or
records onto his phone and plays them to us at a rehearsal. We figure out the notes he’s humming
and he already has the melody and sometimes lyrics in his head, we collaborate the ideas together
and by the end of rehearsal, we have a new song. Sometimes it’s me or David who comes up with an
interesting riff and as a band, we collaborate to create a new song. For “Rocketship,” David came to
rehearsal with this riff idea and how he wanted the hook to sound, very open and anthemic. Our
singer Nick Hade took David’s idea and penned the lyrics, while we crafted the rest of the song. We
knew we had something special the minute we started to strum any chords. Sometimes, we just feel
it. See? Nothing innovative here…..Ever-evolving? Yes. Our songwriting as a band has certainly
evolved as we tend to finish each other's sentences now and that is something special when you’re in
a band together.

You have released several great singles in the form of ‘Carry You' ‘Drowning’, and ‘Cats Away'
What can you tell me about those singles?

As of now, we’ve only released “Carry You” and “Rocketship.” We plan to release “Drowning” this
summer with an incredible new video that we recently filmed at a Haunted House in Staten Island,
NY. That was creepy as hell! “Cats Away” has been changed in title to “Pain In My Ass,” and we’re
not sure if that will be released as a single or not, but it sure will be fun to film a video for that one.
“Carry You” and “Rocketship” really came out swinging and helped us carry over the momentum
we’ve created for ourselves from the Slumlords of New Jersey EP. See? Songwriting
evolution…..Writing better songs!

Will these singles contribute to your new EP, which is due out this year?

Absolutely! These songs will be on our next EP, tentatively titled, Sounds of Spanktown. Before you
let that mind wander into the gutter, which is what we expect, Spanktown was the name of the
town of Rahway during the Revolutionary War. Google it! So, there is a bit of history attached to the
title as well as sounding dirty! We are shooting for a September / October release date.

You have supported bands like Buckcherry, Slash, Three Days Grace, and Godsmack, they are some
incredible bands to open for. How did that experience impact the band and your career?

We’re always students of the game. We made our connections with these bands, we watched how
they carried themselves backstage, and it made us a more professional band because of it. We even
got a standing ovation backstage from the guys of Greta Van Fleet after our performance opening
for them. We’re not by any means the biggest band in New Jersey, but if you come to a Rahway
“Family Reunion,” we certainly act like we’re the biggest band in NJ. Not on an egotistical level, but
on a professional level. There are no egos in this band except for our roadies. They definitely think
about who they are.

Do you think it helps a band when they are able to get support slots like these?

I do. When you get support slots opening for these bigger national acts, you’re performing in front of
thousands of people as opposed to the two to three hundred cap rooms that you would normally be
playing in. Playing a support role in these bigger venues gives you a taste of the big leagues and we
like the big leagues, so hopefully that taste becomes a meal very soon!

Do you plan to do further touring?

Yes, we do. We’re currently working with a booking agent, who plans to put us on the road in
support of our upcoming new EP. Where we’ll be playing still remains to be seen, but the plan is to
tour to support the new music.

And finally, what are the future aspirations for Rahway?

Future aspirations include growing our fanbase, making new friends in the process, hitting the road,
and playing the other side of the US and outside of the US. We just want to play and make people smile
and throw their panties at us!

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You can find a link to the 'Rocketship' music video via the Rahway YouTube channel below



Album Review: EB &The Deadlights- Echoes of A Dreamless Life

Words by Anselm Anderson

Northern Ireland's Horror rock act EB and The Deadlights have undergone a transformation since I last reviewed 2021's debut EP Still See Ghosts. Firstly, the band underwent drastic lineup changes for the best with the additions of new songwriter/guitarist Macauley Rogers, bassist Maciek Zaworski, and guitarist Reece Mathers, who have vastly improved the band's sound into a mature and evolved quartet. And secondly, the band have gained success with an ever-evolving fanbase opening for several major acts such as Priest (ex-Ghost) and horror punk legend Doyle from the legendary, Misfits. 

The wonderfully named Echoes of A Dreamless Life marks the evolution of a new direction for the band with a more muscular guitar sound, heavier tracks and darker lyrics. This nine-track LP borrows influences from Alice Cooper, Rob Zombie and Marilyn Manson, and delves further into punk, electronica and gothic elements.

An unsettling News Report transitions into the murky rock of "Endless Hope," which is layered with distorted guitars and punishing drumming. The catchy rock gives it a good start. The next song is 'Falling Away, a groove-orientated rock track which features slick guitar play and harrowing vocals. Momentum is increased through tantalising solo and meaty riffs. The band are presented with more opportunities to experiment with writing engaging and personal track due to the addition of Macauley Roger's effect on the band is evident in 'Pain That I Need', an anthemic punk track with ominous vocals and enticing guitar leads.

EB and The Deadlights benefit from the other recruits as the music becomes engaging. The dark electronica on 'Hollow Eyes' is moody and disturbing as lead vocalist Ethan Beattie cries "When I look inside hollow eyes I look with disdain. The subtle basslines of bassist Zaworski and fellow guitarist Mathers add uneasiness to the band's sound that wasn't there before.

These additions are what EB And The Deadlights needed to take the band forward. They completely understand the dynamic and the macabre sound helps to establish the band as a unit. I feel this is evident with Lead vocalist Ethan Beattie, who is able to experiment between harsh and clean vocals like on 'Kill Your Answers'. In addition, the recruits have helped Beattie grow in status as a vocalist.

And finally,  'Fatal Violence' is an aggressive metal track, which allows Beattie to express himself through ferocious growls, interlaid with a sonic assault of distorted and abrasive guitars.

Overall, Echoes of A Dreamless Life is a reawakening of a talented band. The album is a darker, broodier and angrier version of the gothic act from Northern Ireland.

Rating: 4/5

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You can find videos for 'Endless Hope' and 'Heaven Into Hell' via the Eb and The Deadlights YouTube Channel below.

Endless Hope (Official Video)

Heaven Into Hell (Official Video)


EP Review: King of The Dead- Perdition

Review by Anselm Anderson

The dark overlords of the rock world return with a six-track EP, ' Perdition'. King of The Dead is a band I have covered over the years. They are described as a 'Mysterious force' clad in cloaks. This release has a 70's radio-friendly appeal mixed with punk and organs!.

The album continues where 2021's The Summoning left off. The infectious ' The Surmon For The Cursed' starts things off with a call to arms over the shrill of the organs as mentioned earlier. The guitar-driven charms of 'The Hunt' is followed with sweet vocal melodies over a soaring riff reminiscent of pop punks acts like The Offspring and Alkaline Trio.

Moreover, The vocal melodies certainly add to the attraction of King of The Dead and their penchant to tell stories that are personal and uplifting. The band create conceptual art that appeals to a certain audience. This can be heard in the anthemic 'Courage' with its pop sensibilities and punk vibes whilst 'Who's Left To Blame?' is a heavy 70's fused rock track with interesting time signatures and a pertinent question. As this article has alluded to, the band write songs that are rich in tone and lyrical content with a blend of styles. 'Crawl' is a heavy track on the EP with a fuzzy riff over smooth vocals and a beautiful orchestral passage at the climax.

And finally, the best for last comes in the guise of 'When It All Comes Down' like a song from the Blue Oyster Cult songbook. The raging guitar riff kicks things off with the infectious chorus and the screams of an organ solo wrap up this satisfactory outing.

Overall, The King of The Dead returns with a heavier and more mature return to form.

Rating: 3.5/5

'Perdition' is available now via all streaming platforms and distribution retail outlets.

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You can watch the videos for ' The Sermon of The Dead' and 'Who's Left To Blame?' via The King of The Dead Youtube Channel below

The Sermon Of The Dead' (Official Music Video)

'Who's Left To Blame?' (Lyric Video)


Album Review- Civil Villains- Motion Sick


Album Review by Anselm Anderson

Alt-rock newcomers Civil Villains released their highly-anticipated album Motion Sick a few weeks back. This a follow-up to the debut EP Snake Oil. The trio include influences from widespread as David Bowie and QOTSA to create a unique blend of dark instrumentation, angular riffs and soft vocal melodies.

Formed in London back in 2016, the trio have worked hard through their dedication to the art via two North American tours and support slots to such luminaries as Bellevue DaysPoly-Math and Kid Kapichi. Recorded at Shaken Oak Studios by Mike Bannard (Foals, Glass Animals), Motion Sick is the finished article of years of hard work.

The LP begins on a sombre note with the instrumental intro of 'Funeral Rouge' setting the scene for the first half of the album. The unstable  'Mortuary Blues' kicks things off with its jagged riffs and clever use of pull and tension building the atmosphere to an unsettling end. The mix of bluesy vocals and harsh ones further amplifies the struggles of the music.

Next up is 'Bayou Autonomy' which echoes the tension of the previous track with lead vocalist James King's cries at the centre of a duel between the grooves of bassist Mark Hudson and King's chilling guitar rhythms. The album takes a trip through various genre changes and carefully constructed riffs to tell stories of social observations. 

Civil Villains attempt to change direction at the halfway stage with stripped-back melodic tracks like 'Nightbloom', 'Petrichor' and 'Present Tense' offering a reprieve to the hectic and unpredictable tracks like 'Cornerstone' and 'Anaesthesia Whores'.

And finally, the energetic 'Cavalier Blonde' perks things up towards the end with its bluesy leads, irregular rhythms and catchy chorus wrapping up an interesting introduction to Civil Villains.

Overall, Civil Villians aim to overcome motion sickness with a slick release that finds a way to blend genres as diverse as, blues, metal, and rock into crafted songwriting and intelligent lyrical content.

'Motion Sick' is now available via all good streaming and distribution outlets.

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James King - Lead vocalist and guitar;

 Mark Hudson – Bass; 

Toby Warren - Drums and additional vocals.

Click on the video links via the Civil Villains Youtube channel below to watch 'Mortuary Blue' and 'Cornerstone'

Mortuary Blue (Official Video)

Cornerstone (Official Music Video)


Song Review- Blacklist Union- Letters From The Psych Ward


This is the cover for the latest single from Blacklist Union called 'Letters From The Psych Ward'

Song Review by Anselm Anderson

Self-proclaimed "Hollywood Street" rockers Blacklist Union have released the title track from upcoming album Letters From The Psych Ward, due for September 2023.

The track was written by lead singer Tony West and produced by Christopher Johnson, mixed by Ghian Wright, engineered by Ghian Wright and Christopher Johnson. It was recorded at East West Studios in Los Angeles.
Blacklist Union Lead Vocalist Tony West

The song's distinctive riff wails over subtle keyboards and rumbling basslines to kick the track off. Tony West's hollow cries of "Letters From The Psych Ward" is like a call to arms before the earworm verses and hook-laden riffs pull the listener in. The song is like a kick back to the angst of Stone Temple Pilots and the attitude of G'N'R to create a  hard rock track that will remind you to read those letters from the psych ward.

Blacklist Union were formed in 2006 following a chance meeting between lead vocalist Tony West and drummer Paul Crosby at a Saliva gig in 1998. The band have released four albums to date.

'Letters From The Psych Ward' is due for release in September 2023.

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You can access the video via the band's YouTube channel here Or click on the video player below to watch 'Letters From The Psych Ward'


Album Review- Ŕênovations- Blank

The cover work for the new LP by Scotch Electro Rock act Renovations.

Album Review by Anselm Anderson

I have found that many bands come with remarkable stories of how they were discovered. Rènovations are no different. The trio have released Blank, the self-produced follow-up to their debut album. The band were granted funding through a Help Musicians UK Funding campaign last year to get the album released. Engineered by Graeme Young, the band recorded the album at Chamber Studios.

The Electronic Rock act hail from Edinburgh, Scotland and their story began four years ago when French vocalist Charlotte Pulcino was offered a gig upon her return from a trip to Thailand. There was one catch- she needed a band. Charlotte contacted Italian drummer Gian Pablo Sudar and Romanian guitarist Ioana Pavel and, following a few drinks at the local pub: A band was formed.

The album itself has been described as " a social, cultural and political commentary" with quite a lot of topics to cover. The album begins with an aggressive opener in 'A Precious Stone', a track with a punchy electronic beat with a mesmerising chant-like verse. This is a good introduction to the band.

Photo Credit: Giulia Sansone

Next up is 'Bed in The Bathroom', a tale about makeshift COVID testing centres, The soulful vocal harmonies over bluesy riffs reflect the gloominess of the situation. The band try to make each track different with a mixture of sounds ranging from blues, pop, rock and electronica to create an environment for these different observations of society. 'Time is a Common Place' is a pop punk track with a rousing chorus, whilst 'Scars' is a daunting tale of trusting your instinct. The hazy intro, irregular beat and sonic synth sound create a sense of uneasiness.

The album leans more towards commercial pop to create atmospheric tracks like 'Larguéé' the catchy 'Forest' and the ultra-sonic 70's dance beats of 'Grind of Mentality' to deliver pervasive messages about Social Media and manipulation. The band sounds like they gain influences from Blondie, Lady Gaga and Garbage to tell stories the average listener can relate to. 

And finally, the trippy 'Euphoria' reflects a night out at a rave club and the dark, instrumental 'Sphere' questions the urgency of our reality.

Overall, Blank offers a fresh perspective on storytelling through an atmospheric and haunting reimagining of social values fresh from Scotland.

Click below to listen to "Blanks" in full


Single Review: The Petal Falls- Obsession

A woman yelling at a man tied to a chair.

Song Review by Anselm Anderson.

English rock act The Petal Falls returns with their first single 'Obsession', taken from their fourth studio album The Ryhthm Train, due out later in the year. The Eighties' influenced track delves into the obsession of the after effects of a passionate affair.

The band's brand of catchy choruses and pop sensibilities combine with a hard rock edge to create a radio-friendly track. lead Vocalist Keith Leahy's infectious melodies are accompanied by keyboard effects that add to the eeriness of the nature. The rhythmic patterns of electric guitar and bass combine to add a sense of mystery to this brooding track.

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You can listen to 'Obsession' in the player below