VOL 14.04

"There's a heavy current going on"


Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
By Aidin Vaziri

Remember when you were in the sixth grade and one day this new kid from a different state got transferred to your class and he was wearing a dirty black shirt with the words “Psycho Candy” over and over on it and then you went to his house after school and he showed you his dad’s Oui magazines and played you the noisiest record you ever heard by a couple of Scottish dudes with crooked hair?

When it started all you heard was sheets of feedback and this guy going, “God spits/ On my soul/ There’s something dead inside my hole/ In my hole/ In my hole/ In my hole”…

That was the exact moment you thought Jesus and Mary Chain was the most perfect band ever and your whole life got better. Now it’s happening again. Except this time, the band is from San Francisco and it’s called Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. But that’s the only difference.

When you hear their new album Take Them On, On Your Own, you are going to think they’re so great that you are going to graffiti their name on a rare beached whale, as one fan recently did to the embarrassment of the band’s bassist and vocalist Robert Turner. “I don’t know how to take that,” he says. “I’m speechless.”

That’s just what happens when you choose to follow the path of the biggest psychedelic sonic gods ever. It’s like messing with witchcraft or a genie bottle — and the band is definitely feeling it.

“It’s a strange, exciting time, so I guess you’ve got to be careful,” Turner says. “There’s a heavy current going on — a lot of good energy, a lot of bad energy. At least it’s there. At least there is something kind of burning right now. Just music in general is starting to kind of step out front again. You know, rock ‘n’ roll. It’s at the forefront of peoples’ minds right now.”

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club are not just here for now but will go down in history for these three reasons: 1) Even though they are on a major label they do everything on their own terms, like mumbling through a recent radio interview and sarcastically asking the DJ if the station ever actually played their records, 2) They have the best taste in music, not only Jesus and Mary Chain, but the Stone Roses, T. Rex, Joy Division, Nirvana, maybe even Terence Trent D’Arby, and 3) Their songs like “US Government” and “Ha Ha High Babe” already sound like classics. Not that they care.

“The rewarding thing is getting to be invited to play all these different places,” Turner says. “Getting to see Portugal, Australia, and Greece. Places you never thought you would go. That’s what it’s all about. And the media circus, it’s as fun as it is annoying. It’s like a comic book but it’s fun to see your picture here and there just because you know people are taking you seriously. We want to be recognized for what we’re doing.”

On the web: www.blackrebelmotorcycleclub.com

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