The Leather Nun

The Leather Nun


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Careening from garage rock to goth and industrial, Leather Nun (aka Ladernunnan) became cult heroes in their native land of Sweden with their shock antics and rollicking tunes. Naming themselves after a London stripper, Leather Nun were formed in Gothenburg in 1979 by Jonas Almqvist (vocals), Bengt "Aron" Aronsson (guitar), Freddie Wadling (bass), and Gert Claesson (drums). Inspired by both Throbbing Gristle and Lou Reed (Almqvist's half-spoken, half-sung vocals were obviously patterned after Reed's), Leather Nun recorded their industrial-leaning debut EP, Slow Death, in 1979. Wadling left Leather Nun in 1982 and joined Blue for Two. A handful of singles followed before Leather Nun released their first live LP, Alive, in 1985. Their debut, Lust Games, followed the year after. The group's imported singles found their way onto U.S. college radio stations, earning substantial airplay with "Pink House," a deadpan parody of John Mellencamp's "Pink Houses." Their sophomore effort, Steel Construction, was issued in 1987, as Leather Nun's American audience began to eclipse their small following in Sweden. The band released the Mick Ronson-produced Nun Permanent in late 1991. The band eventually split up in 1995. While Leather Nun occasionally reunited in the years that followed -- Almqvist even formed a tribute band, Leather Nun: Reloaded, in 2009 -- it wasn't until 2015 that they returned with their fifth album, the Bowie-meets-Sisters of Mercy Whatever (Wild Kingdom/Sound Pollution), their first in nearly 25 years. In 2017, they issued Vive La Fete! Vive La Revolution, a recording of their Glasnost Rock '88 festival appearance. ~ Michael Sutton & Neil Z. Yeung, Rovi