There is a long, not
always storied, history of actors and actresses who fancy themselves
singers. Sometimes it works out, more often it doesn't.
The lead singer of
The Pretty Reckless is Taylor Momsen, former model-turned-Gossip Girl
star. But if you're expecting some candy-ass bubble gum crap, emo-folk
warbling or artsy pretentious noodling, look somewhere else. The
Pretty Reckless rock. And they rock hard.
Momsen obviously has
a pretty bitching record collection. Her band recalls the Pretenders
cross-pollinated with Hole with a sprinkling of the White Stripes.
Hit Me Like A Man,
the quick follow-up to their breakthrough LP Light Me Up, is not
exactly a bundle of new riches - only three new studio songs supplemented
with live versions of two faves from the old album. But what is here
is pretty choice.
Take for example, the
snaky blues of "Cold Blooded," which is the only song in which Momsen shares
lead vocals with a male vocalist (and in these days of downloads with no
liner notes, despite a frenzied Google search, I can't find out if he is a
band member or an outside vocalist brought in for the tune.). However
this album has a swampy, bluesy feel that was only touched on a bit on the
full-length, and the band wears it well.
"Under the Water"
also takes the band in a different direction, it starts as a softer,
folk-tinged ballad before exploding into a harder wall of sound.
The live performances
of "Make Me Wanna Die" and "Since You're Gone" were recorded last November
in London, and while they don't improve on the original versions, they are a
nice bonus for fans.
Hit Me Like A Man
EP is obviously a stop-gap until the next album, but as stop-gaps go,
it's pretty damned tight.
Jay S. Jacobs
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Posted: March 5, 2012.