Black Rebel Motorcycle Club performs September 12 at Trees, with the Warlocks.
Emerging in 2001 in a welter of fuzzed-out guitar and excellently effed-up hair, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club could have been mistaken for the second coming of the Jesus and Mary Chain. Likewise anesthetically moody, but adding the extra oomph of sexual come-on in the bass lines and vocals, the band's debut, B.R.M.C. , fell just short of launching the band into the midlevel stratosphere that was soon to be occupied by the Strokes. Of course, if all of the songs on that record kicked like "Whatever Happened to My Rock 'N Roll (Punk Song)," they'd be superstars. Apparently, someone in the band has taken note of that fact; thus, new record Take Them On, On Your Own pops and punches harder than its predecessor, as though taunting Casablancas & Co. to eat their dust. That said, the group hasn't lost its religion--they're still playing the Chain card and coming up aces, especially on songs such as "Ha Ha High Babe," and all of Take Them On hemorrhages distortion. But the hooks are mixed higher this time around, allowing them to pierce directly to your id. Live shows spill adrenaline into the recipe, making for a cocktail that's nasty, delicious and addictive.