Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Give Your Ass A Kick Start

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

I've noticed quite a bit of action on this offering lately so thought I would re-up closer to the top for those not inclined to dig to much. As many hits as this file has had over the last 5 years, not one comment,  good or bad.

by Bryan Thomas
The seed that became Black Rebel Motorcycle Club — or B.R.M.C. for short — was planted back in 1995, when Robert Turner and Peter Hayes met while attending high school in their hometown of San Francisco. They formed a solid friendship and camaraderie based on a mutual love of early-'90s U.K. bands like Ride and the Stone Roses and a few on the successful Creation Records label (the Jesus and Mary Chain, My Bloody Valentine). They ultimately decided to put their as-yet-unnamed project on hold, and joined other bands while still attempting to keep in touch with each other; frequently they would attend each other's gigs. In 1998, after both had fled their previous groups, they rejoined, this time adding new drummer Nick Jago. (Jago, originally from England, had finished art school to move to the States in 1996). They began performing live in November 1998. Originally calling themselves the Elements — they quickly changed it after discovering many other bands had shared the same title — they purloined their new name from the Marlon Brando-led biker gang who stormed into that dusty California hamlet in The Wild One.By 1999, B.R.M.C. had recorded a polished 16-track demo CD that began making the rounds (they sold all 500 copies at their shows), and relocated to Los Angeles. Local Santa Monica-based KCRW (a well-known FM station that compiled and released yearly Rare on Air CD compilations) jumped on the band's demo first, giving them their initial airplay, but soon interest in the band spread across the Atlantic, where BBC Sheffield even named the demo their "Record of the Week." Oasis' Noel Gallagher heard it and wanted to sign the band to his new Brother Records imprint, telling MOJO magazine that they were his favorite new band, but after inking a lucrative Warner/Chappell publishing deal, they were fielding offers from interested major and indie labels, ultimately choosing to sign in March 2000 with Virgin Records. After a short U.S. tour with the Dandy Warhols, the band entered the studio and produced a self-titled debut, B.R.M.C., which was issued in March 2001. Two years later, the trio returned with a slicker edge; Take Them on, on Your Own appeared in September 2003. They severed ties with Virgin Records eight months later. A deal with RCA surfaced within months, and the acoustic, Americana-influenced Howl arrived in August of 2005. The band moved back to the loud rock & roll approach favored on their first two albums with 2007's Baby 81.
by Bryan Thomas
This L.A.-based band (originally hailing from San Francisco) came along just when they were needed most. This self-produced major-label debut boldly plunders a reverb-and-white noise course previously trampled underfoot by long-gone British bands of the late '80s and early '90s (the Jesus & Mary Chain, the Verve, Ride, the Stone Roses, etc.). It all sounds very British, on many levels, despite the fact that only one band member is an Englishman living in exile in the States. On some songs, however, the driving, over-amped guitars (often buzzing with "VU needles-in-red"-type feedback) and pounding drums have a swaggering primeval feel that rivals solid Detroit rock outfits, both old and new (including the Stooges and the Go, to name two). A few have dark, introspective lyrics, with subjects like impending death ("Rifles" at their heart, while others have a positive, more uplifting feel (cf. "Salvation"), but it's really the group's cohesive, solid production overall that captures a shoegazing, blustery rock vibe not heard for nearly a decade or more. Highlights abound on this astonishing disc, including the bitter opening salvo, "Love Burns," the diaphanous space pop of "Too Real," and the flurry of sawtooth guitar scree that is "Whatever Happened to My Rock n' Roll (Punk Song)," a track recalling the manic intensity of the Stooges circa Fun House.

Get it HERE