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Diodes on Tour! Original 1977 line-up! Italy and Canada dates!

May. 6th, 2010

The Diodes, Canada's legendary punk pioneers, are back for their first tour in over 30 years with their original 1977 line-up of Paul Robinson (vocals), John Catto (guitars), Ian Mackay (bass) and John Hamilton (drums). They are celebrating the release of a new vinyl-only album, Time/Damage: Live 1978, a live document of their historic show at the famous El Mocambo Tavern (The Diodes were the first punk band to play the club and their concert preceded the equally legendary Elvis Costello appearance there by a few days).

Tour dates:


May 21 - Venice, Italy - Pop Corn Club
(with Dave Rave, Ralph Alfonso)

May 22 - Rome, Italy - Road to Ruins Festival
(with Dave Rave, Ralph Alfonso)


June 2 - Waterloo - Starlight

June 3 - London, Ont - Call the Office

June 4 - Toronto - The Horseshoe

June 5 - Hamilton - This Ain't Hollywood

June 19 - Burlington - Sound of Music festival 
(Diodes only - opening for the New York Dolls)

The Diodes were ground zero for punk in Canada - their early shows at the Ontario College of Art inspired a vibrant cultural revolution in Toronto that quickly became one of the major hubs of the emerging punk zeitgeist, alongside New York and London. This story has now been exhaustively documented in the book, Treat Me Like Dirt, by author Liz Worth who will be a special guest on the Ontario tour dates.

In a very special opening segment to the Ontario shows, Liz Worth will be in conversation with Ralph Alfonso (the book's publisher and Diodes/Crash'n'Burn Club manager) and joined in a lively discussion with members of the Diodes, Johnny & The G-Rays and other special guests who feature in her book (now in its third printing in just two months!). Rare 1977 Toronto punk footage will also be shown and all participants will be available to sign books and memorabilia.

"This is something unique and inspired by the success we've had with similar events Liz has done in clubs and record stores, " says publisher Ralph Alfonso. "It's a great opportunity to meet the bands and Liz and get a sense of where the first wave of punk came from."

Also on the bill on the Ontario club dates are Johnny & The G-Rays (featuring 3 original members) whose singer, John Macleod, is pictured building the Crash'n'Burn club stage in the book, Treat Me Like Dirt. Drummer Bent Rasmussen was in the original 1976 version of The Diodes and guitarist Harri Palm was in the pre-Diodes group, The Eels, with Diodes Ian Mackay and John Catto. Johnny & The G-Rays took the punk ethos into their own plane of intricate high-energy guitar rock - now remastered in a deluxe reissue of their debut album previously released on the adventurous Attic Records (where Ralph Alfonso instigated their signing).

Speaking of the punk energy that emerged out of Toronto and Hamilton, Diodes singer Paul Robinson was definitive in his afterword to Treat Me Like Dirt.

“Every once in a while, maybe in every century, a city has its moment.
And I think a lot of Toronto’s moment was between 1976 and 1980. There
was just an incredible amount of energy in Toronto. I think it was a pretty
boring place before all of us. We kind of were the instigators in terms
of changing an awful lot of the direction of the city, artistically and
musically and stylistically. People wanted Toronto to be more New York
than New York, but keep its own identity. They wanted it to be important;
they wanted it to matter. A lot of what I see in Toronto now is the product
of what we created in a five-year period of time.”


The Diodes were part of the first wave of international Punk bands to surface in 1976. Their appearance supporting the Talking Heads, January 1977, at Ontario College of Art is legendary in the development of the alternative music scene in Toronto and in Canada. In their short career, the band went on to achieve many firsts, including; running Canada’s first Punk club, Crash ‘n’ Burn; the only Canadian Punk band to sign a major record deal (CBS/Epic), releasing an album in October 1977; ahead of The Sex Pistols and other spearheads of the Punk genre.

The album was released domestically in many European countries achieving a cult status in Italy, Sweden, Holland and France. The Diodes toured extensively between 1977-1981 supporting The Ramones, The Dead Boys, The Runaways, The Cramps, Ultravox, Gary Numan and U2. They headlined New York’s CBGB’S, Max’s Kansas City, Peppermint Lounge and LA’s The Whiskey A Go Go to rave reviews in The Village Voice, New York Rocker, The Trouser press, Creem, NME, Sounds and Billboard. The Diodes were also the first Canadian Punk band to chart on the Canadian Top 100.

High decibel, high energy with aggressive guitars and swirling melodic vocals…here are all the elements you will hear as the original 1977 line up of Paul Robinson (vocals), John Catto (guitar), Ian Mackay (bass) and John Hamilton (drums) embark on their first tour in 30 years, including Festival dates in Venice and Rome, Italy. A new vinyl album, Time Damage, has just been released on Rave Up Records, Italy.

The Diodes’ distinctive brand of melodic Punk is constantly sited as one of the first Power Pop bands to emerge and has had a profound influence on the music which followed in the 1990s and beyond.

Liz Worth is a Toronto-based writer and the author of Treat Me Like Dirt: An Oral History of Punk in Toronto and Beyond (Bongo Beat, 2009), now in its third printing and distributed in Canada, USA, UK, and Germany, Treat Me Like Dirt is her first nonfiction novel. Her writing has also appeared in Toronto Star, Broken Pencil, Exclaim!, Eye Weekly, and tons more.

John Macleod (vocals, guitar), Harri Palm (guitar), Ben Rasmussen (drums), Mike Young (bass)
Their debut album was produced by Stacy Heydon (guitarist for David Bowie, Iggy Pop).

Dave's new Bongo Beat cd is Live With What You Know.

Bongo Beat's leader has a new EP out! Includes "Billy Fury Billy Fury".


Sari Delmar // AUDIO BLOOD INC.



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