Black Rebel Motorcycle Club : Love Burns

Scrawl it large, BMRC rule...

In terms of disenfranchised, 'classic' sulkcore rock'n'roll bands, what sorts leather from leatherette is the ability to stomp heavily on the pedal of darkness without it all getting silly and turning goth. Good news then, for the existential literature posse, BRMC's opening blast of headlong speedhead sneer and grainy video footage 'Whatever Happened To My Rock'n'Roll (Punk Song)?' was not a freak streak of brilliance. The follow up from the Los Angeles based trio is a triumphant display of depth. Robert Turner, Peter Hayes and Nick Jago are clearly fully in command of their nonchalant, glowering, serpentine aesthetic. 'Love Burns' emerges from the fog of circling piano figures and sonic interference as a murky mantra of thrumming, descending bass and deadpan lovelorn vocals. The lurching, zonked out and harmonica'd 'Screaming Gun' is equally delectable but it’s final track 'Rifles' where they clinch matters, riding heroically into a truly exceptional, epic drugzone of bleak angst-edelia and in the process bolting a coffin shaped sidecar onto The Stripes/Strokes mean machine. The resistance is complete.

Maybe, if Thatcher's Britain produced Joy Division and the Madness then a telegram should be dispatched to George W thanking him for demoralising the thinking US classes to the point where they'll make music with a similar spirit of violent exorcism. Scrawl it large, BMRC rule, but don't use an eyeliner pencil or a syringe.

Roger Morton

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