Soho Dolls
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Soho Dolls


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"SohoDolls - Ribbed Music For the Numb Generation"

If the ultimate purpose of modern rock music is to communicate to the listener how entirely fantastic and prolific at sex you are then Sohodolls are the best band who ever lived. Even the most perfunctory listen to their oeuvre suggests that theirs is a sex life stuffed to bulging with orgies and elaborate pulley systems. Sohodolls are actually not the best band who ever lived, but they are expert purveyors of entirely perverted and deceptively witty sexlectro, most notably on 'Prince Harry'. The squelchy synth bass and scratchy guitar get a bit samey,but it's a great samey and when they rise above the aggregate on the almost moist-with-sauciness 'Pleasures Of Soho', they'd inspire the most chaste of monks into a bizzare wank-dance combination. And that's what pop is all about - making monks wank. - NME


"Ribbed Music For The Numb Generation" (2007)
Sohodolls debut album is out NOW



Maya Von Doll was 7 years old when she was airlifted from war in Beirut onto a ship bound for Cyprus. “I wanted there to be bombs as it was more exciting,” she remembers, “but my parents knew they had to get me out.”

Four years later, in 1992, the family decided to move to the UK permanently. “I’m going to be an English girl,” declared the headstrong 11 year old, who professed, too, that she “liked their school uniforms”. But whilst other girls in her class were getting down to R ‘n’ B and hip hop (“it was ridiculous!”) Maya decided to turn her attention to the burgeoning Britpop scene. And who better to show her a thing or two than Blur’s Alex James? “I met him at 16,” she sighs, “ although at the time I knew nothing about his band. But all I will say is that Alex instigated the desire in me to be a singer. Before then, I wanted to be a corporate lawyer. A cold bitch with a penthouse apartment.”

A couple of indie bands and one degree in economics later (“well, you need something to back you up in life”) – but with no penthouse on the horizon – Maya met Sohodolls co-founder Toni Sailor.

“My father was away on the boats for months and my mother was nowhere to be found.” So says Toni, who was placed in a children’s home soon after his birth in Hamina, a Finnish port town brimming over with sailors, the military and prostitutes. At the age of four, Toni was adopted by a priest and his wife, who brought him up.

Playing in a couple of bands in his teens, he soon found himself in notorious Finnish garage-rock combo Lowdown Shakin’ Chills: “We achieved the sort of status where everyone knew who we were,” he says, “but no-one was buying our records.” So a move to London was in order.

And three years ago Toni met Maya. “I was watching her then band at the Rhythm Factory in East London,” he says. “Three girls and a mini-disc player for drums. I really didn’t like it.” He smiles. “Good songs though.”

After the gig, Toni was offered £80 a day to drive the band around and play guitar – and, somehow, he – unlike the other two girls – has been a Doll ever since.

Aged 11, Weston Doll spent his time having organ lessons at a Yamaha Music School. By 14 he was more into socialising and the female species (“all I cared about was vodka, fags, girls and the local park”). From one organ to, um, another.

After enrolling in a degree in Music Production a couple of years ago, he thought he should play an instrument again, and these days, whilst still fond of vodka, he’s also a dab hand with a keyboard: “I love them. I have one for each corner of my room along with my set of decks,” he enthuses. Weston met Maya through MySpace last year. Actually, within ten minutes Maya and Toni asked if he was available to play their Istanbul date two weeks later. It really was that simple.

The band’s first two singles caused enough of a stir to reach #7 and #’12 in the UK indie charts. These were followed by last year’s classic ‘Stripper’, which won acclaim everywhere from The Fly to Clash and NME. Then there was the She Wants Revenge support in July, a performance at Hugh Heffner’s Playboy party in Moscow in August, The Big Issue’s 15th anniversary concert in September, another accalimed single ‘No Regrets’ in October – and a date alongside The Horrors at NME’s ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll Riot Tour’.

Which brings us to the heart of the band. Sohodolls is all about doing it live. Period. Sohodolls have played headline shows in Moscow, LA, Istanbul, Rome, Berlin, Paris, Barcelona, Vienna, Brussels, Milan, Turin, Hamburg, Madrid, Piza, Köln, Oslo, Munich – as well as every town and city in the UK. Sohodolls have also toured with or supported Ladytron, Vive La Fete, She Wants Revenge, Magic Numbers, Soulwax and The Charlatans.

With a list of international dates forever on the horizon, Maya’s face lights up when asked about their live performances: “The gigs! Well, in King Tut’s, the band before us got booed off stage, and the whole crowd was shouting ‘Sohodolls! Sohodolls!’ We got 5 encores.”

Most memorable gig? ‘The Water Rats, where I stage-dived. Toni climbed on the monitor but ended up on the floor with half a broken pint glass stuck in his back. We hadn’t realised and by the end of the gig we were both covered in blood until our manager sent us back stage for first aid.’Youch. R ‘n’ B this ain’t.

The band have just finished recording their as-yet-untitled debut album with producers Robert Harder (Whitey, Polar Bear, Babyshambles, The Sunshine Underground) and Steve Lyon (Depeche Mode, The Cure). Upfront of new single ‘Trash The Rental’, and their debut album, both set for release this summer, Sohodolls unleash a free fan-only download, ‘My Vampire’, on April 26. My Vampire’s dreamy vocals belie its armoury of hardened synths and prowling bass lines. “Lyrically, 'My Vampire' expresses our vulnerable side,” says Maya, “our addiction to people that we know are harmful to us. Musically, it's a pulsating electr