Slumber Party hail from Detroit.

They are:

Julie Benjamin - drums
Gretchen Gonzales - guitar
Leigh Sabo - bass
Aliccia Berg - guitar, lead vocals

They play a very cool Velvets form of laid back rock guitar music, which now is almost forgotten about. They have two albums on the US label Kill Rock Stars, 'Slumber Party' (which is also available on Poptones in UK) and 'Psychedelicate'. Both are worthy of your attention.

Pennyblackmusic caught up with Slumber Party at a recent London gig, in which they supported Tender Trap, and began by talking to the group about it name, which was given to them by Kim Fowley, the famed American producer, musician and band manager.

PB: Why the name 'Slumber Party'?

AB : The name is from Kim Fowley. I called him up and he said
'Slumber Party' and that was it. Do you know who Kim Fowley is?

PB: Yes. I know him.

AB: Because a lot of people don't know him at all.

PB: I believe you're all from Detroit and I believe there is already an ex-member.

AB: Marcie Bolen.

PB : And she is in the Von Blondes now?

AB : The Von Bondies.

PB : So apart from that it is all original members?

AB : Yeah, it is. Actually, Julie was in the band before Marcie was, but she took a little hike but now she is back.

PB : You have released 2 albums now on Kill Rockstars. What attracted you to that label?

GG : Oh, gosh! They were the first takers. They were really nice and then let us do what ever we wanted. It was quick and easy.

AB : We had been going for just under a year and we did some 4 track demos on a cassette thing. I don't think other people would have understood what we were doing necessarily. Not that they were not good demos (Laughs)!

PB : What brought you four together as a band?

AB : Gretchen drives.

JB : We all have a part that we do.

GG : We were all doing things before we met each other. Leigh and I were introduced through our producer Mat Smith and Leigh was in 'The Circle' then we found Julie in the streets of a festival in Detroit and it just worked.

AB : We all have similar tastes. That makes it easy.

PB : The bands that you have been compared to include the John Cale version of the Velvets, and the Shop Assistants.

AB : Sure.

PB : And your voice sounds like the singer of Stereolab.

AB : That is what I have read.

PB : Do you like being compared to them ? Well, you know the Velvets because they are Americans!

AB : (Laughs) Another one they mention are Galaxie 500.

PB : But they sound like the Velvets anyhow!

AB : I think we all have similar record collections, similar tastes. I like to think I sound like Lou Reed but.... (laughs)

PB : I don't think you do. Is this your first trip here?

AB : Yeah.

PB : Have you enjoyed it?

AB : Yeah, every day.

JB : We have been to Glasgow, Nottingham, Lincoln, Manchester, Bath, Cardiff and played two dates in London.

PB : Generally, how well have you gone down? Have people known you?

AB : There have been a few who have at each one.

GG : Lincoln was an off city, but Bath was awesome.

PB : Have you enjoyed it as much as playing in America?

GG : I think it's the same.

AB : It's a little harder for us to get around. We are driving ourselves.

PB : The music you play is very old fashioned guitar rock, whereas most US guitar rock is now Nu metal. Is that what brought you together because what you are doing isn't fashionable ? Everything is now post rock and music is going in another direction.

AB: You know what I think brings us together? We hear an amp or a guitar tone or a drum tone and we all either like it or don't like it. It comes down to the tone, the warmth of it and we play off each other as well.

PB : Future plans?

AB: We are doing a new record, which we are recording now. Hopefully it will be out in next few months.

PB: Thanks for your time.

More information about Slumber Party can be found at

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