Black Rebel Motorcycle Club's "Beat the Devil's Tattoo" Music Review

4/10/2010 Posted by Admin

Music Review

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club's "Beat the Devil's Tattoo"

By our guest blogger, Megan O'Malley

The first decade of the millennium brought listeners a plethora of bluesy, driven rock and roll. It harkens back to the days of old when rock and roll was dirty and dangerous. The Black Rebel Motorcycle Club (BRMC) is one of those groups. “Beat the Devil’s Tattoo” is the seventh release by the BRMC and it keeps their well-worn sound alive.

As an opening track, “Beat the Devil’s Tattoo” has a gritty quality to it that can be heard throughout the entire album. It gives listeners an idea of what they are in store for and is a strong way to lead of the album. The first half of the album has a great southern sound to it. They sound like the good old boys. Through the album there are loads of chanting beats and some Brian Jonestown Massacre style jams which are beautifully done. At times they sound similar to their bluesy counterparts the Black Keys, but BRMC are less daring in their musical style as a whole. “Aya” which is one of the strongest pieces on the album has sweet darkness to it. “Shadow’s Keeper” builds up to a crazy cacophony of music that has a note of finality; it could easily have served as the last song on “Beat the Devil’s Tattoo.”

The weaker spots of the album come in the forms of the songs “Bad Blood” and “Sweet Feeling.” “Bad Blood” has lyrics that are far too repetitive and start to grate on listener’s nerves after a while, whereas “Sweet Feeling” is just mediocre all around. The last song is “Half State” and at 10.5 minutes, it goes on entirely too long. While the guitars are excellent and it really shows off the group’s talent, the song does build up enough to really make the pay off worth it.

BRMC jump around with their styles of music just enough to keep their listeners interested. They aren’t just playing slightly altered versions of the same songs--each piece of the “Beat the Devil’s Tattoo” is different. Although not all of the songs work entirely, the diversity of the album makes it worth listening too.

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