Monday, May 31, 2010

The Main Street Gospel - Love Will Have Her Revenge

The Main Street Gospel
Love Will Have Her Revenge
Tee Pee

Love ‘em or hate ‘em, the Brian Jonestown Massacre can definitely be counted on for one thing: spawning a gazillion other bands. (Probably because no one with creative ideas of his/her own can stand to be in a band with Anton Newcombe for long. Not dissing, just sayin’.) The latest chip off the old block comes after former BJM tambourine player Barry Dean relocated to Columbus, Ohio, picked up a guitar and formed the Main Street Gospel. The trio makes noise that isn’t a million miles away from Dean’s alma mater on Love Will Have Her Revenge. Straightforward rock and pop melodies get filtered through a psychedelic gauze, with spaced-out guitars and vocals that sound piped in from the subconscious. But the MSG has a rootsy vibe alien to Newcombe, drawn from 70s blues rock and country pop. Tunes like the folk-rocking Getting Through, Losing Sleep and Truly (Shine) and the blues-grooving Sweet Summer Rain and title track give Dean and company a warm familiarity and easy accessibility. Also, as might be expected from a power trio led by a guitarist, there’s a lot of jamming, more in the Neil Young style of pushing the melody forward than in the unfocused Grateful Dead style of going nowhere. She’s a Disease, Lay It On the Line and Ready to Shine (born to be the band’s set-closer) reflect an almost casual intensity that keeps us from zoning out. Fool’s Gold is the band’s apotheosis, starting out as a pop song but ending as an acid-fried jam-out. Some will no doubt complain about the Main Street Gospel being too retro, but to my ears Love Will Have Her Revenge sounds timeless.

- Michael Toland
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