The bountiful harvest of festival sideshows continues. Last night was my sixth (I think, I’m losing count) time seeing Black Rebel Motorcycle Club.
I didn’t get to the Metro early enough to see the opening act. In fact I missed half of the opening song by BRMC, who must have started their set five minutes earlier than the scheduled time! As Siany has pointed out to me, that’s not very rock ‘n’ roll.
What is rock ‘n’ roll are the bass-heavy, fuzzed-out jams that BRMC excel at. They’ve made four very good – but essentially identical – rock albums and one acoustic roots album. The latter album, Howl, serves them well live as they can now slow things down mid-set. But the rest of the time they create a wall of guitar sound and just get stompy or psychedelic (or, sometimes, a bit of both). And underpinning it all is Robert Levon Been’s super-distorted bad-ass bass. That’s the sound that makes this band.
This is the first time I’ve seen BRMC since ex-Raveonettes drummer Leah Shapiro joined them, replacing Nick Jago. She did what was required, but I didn’t see too much flair. The band still make an awesome power trio, though, and create an unholy amount of noise.
There were three highlight songs for me. One – no surprise – was “Spread Your Love” from their first album. The other two were both from the Baby 81album: a thrashing “Berlin” and a slow, sultry “666 Conducer”. The last really surprised me; they gave it far more sexy swing than it has on record.
Still, overall, seeing BRMC is an exercise in downbeat rock familiarity. You know just what you’re going to get. And I like what I get.
BRMC photo from ggpurk via Creative Commons license
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club’s next album, Beat The Devil’s Tattoo, is out in early March. You can listen to the title single here. It sounds very BRMC-y. A bit of the acoustic roots sound of Howl, but darker. It’s a decent little stomper, but it’s not blowing me away.
Here’s further info on the release from the band’s mailing list:
Album Release and Formats:
1. Beat The Devil’s Tattoo
2. Conscience Killer
3. Bad Blood
4. War Machine
5. Sweet Feeling
7. Mama Taught Me Better
8. River Styx
9. The Toll
11. Shadow’s Keeper
12. Long Way Down
“Beat The Devil’s Tattoo” will be released March 8th in the UK & Europe and March 9th in North Hollywood and will available in a variety of formats. The first 50k copies in the US will come on a special edition black disc. In the UK & Europe, there will be a standard jewel case version containing the 13 album tracks, as well as a deluxe version that comes in the same special packaging as the US release and contains the 13 album tracks plus two B-Sides.
A Vinyl edition will be released as well and will contain the track “Annabel Lee.”
The album will also be available for pre-order on iTunes starting in the US on February 9th and in the UK & Europe on February 8th (awaiting confirmation). All pre-orders will come with an instant download of the track “Beat The Devil’s Tattoo.”
The US iTunes Version will have the album only
track “Annabel Lee,” a Digital Booklet of the album art as well as the B-Side Track “1:51” (exclusive to the pre-order period). The UK/European iTunes version will include the album only track
“Annabel Lee” and the Digital Booklet.
Exclusive album bundles will be available for order soon from our new merch store which will be launching soon, and will be featuring some new items.
As a reminder, the world tour is on sale now with in Los Angeles, Vancouver, Toronto, London, and Brighton already selling out.
A 3rd show in LA has been added and will take place on March 12th atThe Echoplex
. T his will be the last show in LA on this tour and there are only a handful of tickets remaining for it, as well as for the April 8th show in New York at Webster Hall
After briefly moving from it’s home at The Phoenix in Toronto, Ontario, the April 1st show has returned to The Phoenix and is now sold out. To accommodate the demand for tickets, a second show has been added in Toronto at The Phoenix on April 11th. This show is On Sale Now!
The UK tour will now start in London on April 15th at The Electric Ballroom. Tickets are On Sale Now
and going quickly now that the April 23rd show at The Forum is Sold Out.
Additionally the band has added a show at the Rockhouse in Salzburg, Austria on May 19th. Tickets for this show are On Sale Now
Support for the US tour will come from:
2/26: Sacramento, CA / Harlow’s Nightclub
2/27: Reno, NV / The Knitting Factory
2/28: Las Vegas, NV / Wasted Space @ The Hard Rock
3/2: Denver, CO / The Gothic Theatre
3/4: Boise, ID / Knitting Factory
3/5: Seattle, WA / Showbox
3/6: Vancouver, BC / Commodore Ballroom
3/7: Portland, OR / Wonder Ballroom
3/9: San Francisco, CA / Slim’s
3/11: Los Angeles, CA / Echoplex
3/12: Los Angeles, CA / Echoplex
3/13: San Diego, CA / House of Blues
Band Of Skulls:
3/18: Dallas, TX / House of Blues
3/20: Houston, TX / House of Blues
3/21: Tulsa, OK / Cain’s
3/23: St. Louis, MO / The Pageant
3/24: Madison, WI / High Noon Saloon
3/25: Chicago, IL / The Metro
3/26: Milwaukee, WI / Turner Hall
3/27: Minneapolis, MN / First Ave
3/30: Columbus, OH / Newport Music Hall
Support for the rest of the US dates will be announced soon.
Support for the Electric Ballroom show will come from Little Fish and the UK & European support will be announced shortly.
Over at Black Rebel Motorcycle Club‘s web page there’s a bunch of new stuff.
- A three-disc DVD set will be released 10 November 2009 (more details below)
- Their fifth studio album is due out in spring of 2010
- You can download a free remix of “666 Conducer” (from their Baby 81album)
- You can view an exclusive video from The Effects of 333, the band’s 2008 self-released instrumental album
More detail on the DVD, from the band’s mailing list:
Los Angeles, CA (September 8, 2009) – Vagrant Records is pleased to announce their partnership with Black Rebel Motorcycle Club to release Live, a 2-DVD, 1 CD set on November 10, 2009 on the band’s own Abstract Dragon label.
The DVD features over two hours of live concert footage from three sold out shows in Berlin, Dublin and Glasgow. The footage documents the end of the band’s 2007 tour in support of Baby 81 , their most recent full-length release. The live audio was mixed by BRMC’s own Peter Hayes and the gritty cinematography keeps the band’s music front and center while viewers experience the show both from the stage and from the audience’s perspective.
Over ninety minutes of unadorned, intimate behind-the-scenes footage is captured on the second bonus DVD along with additional performance footage. Viewers accompany BRMC as they record songs from Howl, see the making of the “Weapon of Choice” video, and witness inspired, impromptu off-stage performances.
The package is rounded out by a bonus audio CD featuring 14 songs from the concert film and a gorgeous 48-page booklet of previously unseen backstage and candid photos of the band. The full track listing and cover art will be revealed in the coming weeks.
The Los Angeles, CA-based group is currently at The Station House studio in Hollywood finishing work on their fifth studio album. This will be the band’s first recording with drummer Leah Shapiro and is expected to have a March 2010 release.
“We lived and breathed this record for 6 months out in one the coldest Philadelphia winters in history. Every track on there was frozen to our bones, and chipped off one sliver at a time” – Robert Been