With the major record companies now washing down a gluttonous feast at the punk/ska banquet table with polite sips of swing, good ol' rock music isn't even getting invited to dinner. Hunger is good for rock, and San Francisco's Lechers sound like they're starving. Created four years ago by guitarist and lead singer Jett Terror, the band plays furious rock that avoids both the trappings of noise pop's wimpy melodies and sludgecore's Sabbath riff-offs. The five songs on the group's self-titled debut cassette are strung up by thick guitar licks, then kicked along by the relentless madman drumming of Andrew Falk. The barbarous chorus hook on "Love Sick/Sick Love" sounds like early '80s Damned channeling MC5. On "Rebel Rock 'n' Roll" Terror sneers about the lack of rebels in today's rock (a common theme for the band) while the rhythm section plays like "Motorhead fucking the Misfits in the ass," as the singer eloquently puts it. Live, the Lechers don't fuck around: no babbling at the audience, no moody pauses, no rock-star posing. Instead, the group's onslaught lapses for only two things -- a quick breath and a new beer.
-- Robert Arriaga
The Lechers play Thursday, March 5, at 9 p.m. at the Chameleon, 853 Valencia (at 19th Street). Badasstards and Romeo's Dead open. Tickets are $5; call 821-1891.