Meat and Bone

Meat and Bone

The last release by Jon Spencer Blues Explosion was 2004's Damage, and the trio called it quits after that album's relatively lukewarm reception. Back in the '90s, JSBX had made a string of fearsome records that reinvented and further dirtied the blues-rock hybrid, inarguably laying the groundwork for bands like The Black Keys. Then a 2010 reunion tour convinced guitarist/frontman Spencer, drummer Russell Simins, and guitarist Judah Bauer to get back together in the studio. If you're among those wondering if the band has any spit and grit left in it, well—just give Meat and Bone a listen. It's astonishingly great. If the opening track, "Black Mold," doesn't get your blood boiling and your hips grinding, you might just throw in the towel now and type "Manilow" or "Fogelberg" in the search box above. (Not that there's anything wrong with that; it just may mean your rock days are over.) "Black Mold" roils and snaps with as much ferocity as anything from the trio's brilliant Orange or Extra Width albums, and by the time you get through the Stones-at-their-dirtiest second track, "Bag of Bones," you know the next 30 minutes will be seriously sweaty and possibly dangerous.

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