There is this great tale of Oasis’ Noel Gallagher stumbling upon the drummer of Muse during an award show who is about to „light up“ an electronic cigarette. It goes without saying that the best person to tell this story is Gallagher himself: 

 

I saw the drummer from Muse smoking an electronic cigarette. A cigarette with a battery in. I had to say to him: ‘Really? Really? Is that where you are at? Do me a favour mate, either have a proper one outside, or don’t have one.’ It lit up green when he had a drag of it. Nonsense. He said that immortal line – “Oh you know how it is mate.” And I said “I’m sorry mate, I actually don’t.” 

I’m glad to announce: Vicious are smoking proper ones. A LOT of proper ones. 

And they don’t even have to go outside to light up – after all, they’re living in Vienna.

For a passionate smoker, a trip to the Austrian capital feels like a journey to carcinogenic paradise, where – could you imagine? – anti-cultural idiocies like an absolute smoking ban simply don’t exist yet. Here, the insides of clubs and bars are still steaming, stinking tobacco temples, and for the better of it.

Maybe this is the reason why Vienna right now is the hotbed of so much insanely good guitar-laden music, since – a point so obvious it shouldn’t have to be mentioned explicitly – anyone claiming to play rock music without even producing a minimum amount of glow, smoke and ashes has failed his profession as badly as a mentally challenged quantum physicist. Nevermind that some profiled wise guys at some pop academy try to tell you otherwise. You know how it is mate. – I'm sorry, I actually don't. It should, therefore, not be accidental that lead singer and song writer Maxim Eczyk and guitarist Torsten Rollinger found themselves in the flood of Germans moving to Vienna as addiction refugees. A bigger coincidence could be that they met Dominic Rubas (base), Christian Anich (keys) and Patrick Huter (drums). Maybe it was no coincidence but a lucky twist of fate, but lucky nonetheless, that’s for sure. Anyway, this twist brings with it a series of important questions. Questions of “How?” For example: How can you write a chorus dissolving in such amazing sadness like the one in “Odyssey” does? How elegantly can Vicious set up their landing in the realms of heavy-hearted gloom rock reigned by the likes of the Doors, Joy Division and Editors? How much more promising could a debut EP be?

How dark must a soul be that is capable of releasing such a haunted baritone voice? And how the hell does it fit into such a skinny body as Eczyk’s? How can you learn to smoke, dance, handle the keys and raise your fist as simultaneously and nonchalantly as Anich does? And how long will it take Vicious to release their debut LP? Just to name a few...

All these questions pop up when seeing Vicious perform, and yet, their answers have to be postponed as stronger urges wanting to be satisfied grow in you when hearing the black-and-white shaded sound: You want to put on your most raddled clubbing clothes, you want to hang out in shady bad-aired corners waiting for the next dealer to come by. You want to advance the most beautiful, most chilling, most above reach person of the evening and serve her or him your heart on a silver tray, knowing that she or he will splatter it and stub out a Marlboro Light in the shards. You want to be young enough not to care about health or money, and at the same time you want to be worn out and lost enough to just hold on for another miracle. If you hear Vicious, you want to smoke.

If you have kept at least a small sense of art, taste and style, you should know that in these dull days this is one of the highest compliments for rock music you can give. Got a fag, mate?