Sahara Hotnights 

Jennie Bomb

"This idea of 'genre' is really lame," said Mike Watt in an interview last year. "You don't listen to music: You listen to types of music, and then subtypes inside of that ... it makes marketing easier, but on all the other fronts it makes things so much tougher and harder and bigoted and segregated."

He couldn't be more right. Today's trendy genre of choice is garage. (Or maybe it's punk? Or perhaps raw, gritty blues? Plain rock 'n' roll?)

But hell, it's just music. Take Sahara Hotnights' latest album Jennie Bomb, for example. Sure, the Swedish foursome is garage, punk, and rock -- even a little bluesy at times. But what matters most is that it's good. And yes, the band is all girls. It shouldn't matter but, unfortunately, it continues to be an uncommon, curious, even shocking (they're good, for girls!) characteristic in the rock world.

Jennie Bomb is loud and fast and always on time -- no artsy imperfections or post-punk dissonance, just well-played, high-energy punk rock. Although its sound can be pretty sexy, even seductive at times, it all just feels right -- the guitars grind and mesh with stomping beats and bittersweet vocals that harmonize just so with blasting melodies and traveling bass lines.

"Fire Alarm" is driven by a Pixies-ish guitar riff, pleading vocals, and an emotionally charged melody, while "No Big Deal" rolls so fast you might think the last line is gonna beat out the next -- extremely catchy but tough. Lead singer and guitarist Maria Anderson has the sort of singing style that begs you to stay and tells you to get lost all at once; intense and drenched in attitude. "Only the Fakes Survive" is the slowest track for its dark backdrop and desperate croons. Strutting, swaggering, and shaking things up, this band blurs the lines and makes you forget why they matter.

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