Album Review: Bellrays – Black Lightning Fargo

Twenty years on and still dodging fads as they pass on by

Toasting their 20th birthday this year, Californian garage-rock titans [a]Bellrays[/a] were brief contenders for the big time around nine years ago, when their best moments were compiled by Alan McGee’s short-lived Poptones label.

Which probably also explains why fame eluded them. Not that their set-up – speed-dusted, punk-paced hard rock fronted by the belting, [a]Aretha-Franklin[/a]-worthy ’60s soul vocals of Lisa Kekaula – sat comfortably with most of the whitebread ’00s crowd.

They’re still ploughing their singular furrow in 2011 – deviating only for a string-laden quasi-ballad ‘Sun Comes Down’ – and they’re still all the better for not caring a jot for passing fads.

Noel Gardner


Order a copy of Bellray’s ‘Black Lightning’ from Amazon