Turning up the volume
Bad Brains heard this new music style in the late ’70s, took the influence of these three bands and ran with it. This wasn’t a bunch of suburban white kids scaring the neighbors; this was a group of inner city black youths who heard a new style of music and decided to play it themselves.
Bad Brains members HR, Earl Hudson, Darryl Jenifer and Dr. Know have gone on to influence all punk music to this day.
Musicians the likes of Ian MacKaye of Minor Threat and Fugazi, Henry Rollins and Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters have all extolled the musical ability of Bad Brains.
Rollins described their early shows as “watching the greatest band in the world.” The prominence of Bad Brains was always disrupted by the roller coaster of personal relationships. Continuous battles between members have given the band an on-again off-again career.
After some time off to pursue other outlets like HR’s roots-reggae band Human Rights, and Dr. Know’s involvement with hip-hop impresario Mos-Def and his hardcore venture Blackjack Johnson, the original members are back together again.
The volume and energy of their live show once got them banned in their hometown. The show may include classics like “Re-ignition” and “Sailin’ On” in addition to work off the new album they’re currently recording with Beastie Boy Adam Yauch, also known as MCA. This tour takes them through Colorado, culminating at the X-Games in Aspen. Promoters hope to re-introduce the group to a younger generation of aggressive music lovers as Soul Brains, the moniker they released “God of Love” under. While the songs range from fast hardcore to roots reggae and dub, the lyrics carry a message of PMA – positive mental attitude and praises to Jah, part of their rastafarian beliefs.
Bad Brains play 8150 in Vail Saturday at 10 p.m. For more information call the club at 479-0607.