Black Rebel Motorcycle Club

Baby 81

(RCA; May 2007)

It is a sign of the times that BRMC’s fourth album offers up some extremely appropriate mantras to counter our nation’s nauseating moral torpor. Take the T. Rex-inspired “Berlin,” which lays down a Bolan-esque boogie beat alongside the cynical refrain: “Suicide’s easy / What happened to the revolution?” On the droning, stentorian “Weapon of Choice,” Robert Been wails, “What’s your weapon of choice? / There is no weapon to free us all / : I won’t waste my love on a nation.” The dirty Delta blues riffs on “Took Out a Loan” borrow heavily from a Led Zeppelin approach, as Peter Hayes channels Jimmy Page and drummer Nick Jago does his best John Bonham. “Window,” “666 Conducer,” and the epic, nine-minute “American X” also please. When all’s heard and done, Baby 81 is one of the best rock releases of 2007. Read The Indy‘s interview with BRMC here.

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