Made Out of Babies announces summer tour, band led by the singer Decibel calls “Metal’s Most Riveting Frontwoman” and Revolver picks among the “Hottest Chicks in Metal” brings intense, volatile live show to the masses.
Made Out of Babies — the New York City quartet that looks like renegade fashion models and sounds like a ferocious hybrid of PJ Harvey, Jesus Lizard, Babes In Toyland and Big Black — has announced tour dates throughout the east coast and midwest in July. See complete tour dates below.
The band’s sophomore Neurot Recordings album, Coward (E-CARD) received an 8 out of 10 rating from Decibel Magazine and ranked in that publication’s Top 40 Best Albums of 2006. Likewise, Revolver Magazine currently features vocalist Julie Christmas in its “Hottest Chicks in Metal” issue. And, despite the group’s menacing sound and intimidating glamour, much of the mainstream music media has embraced MOoB’s dark portents.
“Metal’s Most Riveting Frontwoman” might be the type of accolades awarded in a construction industry trade magazine, but we double-checked and such high praise for Made Out of Babies and Battle of Mice wailer Julie Christmas is indeed that of the esteemed rock monthly Decibel Magazine (which also awarded the Battle of Mice debut a perfect 10 out of 10!) Likewise, several other publications have sung the praises of Coward since its release in October, 2006.
Made Out of Babies first captured the attention of the underground punk/metal scene with its Neurot Recordings debut Trophy in 2005. On stage, caterwauling front-woman Julie Christmas paces the floor, yelping with a bewitching intensity that defies her charming beauty and occasionally cherubic whispers. Meanwhile, towering guitarist Brendan Tobin coolly strangulates leaden sheets of guitar strata from his battered six-string, bassist Cooper lunges in time as his instrument rumbles and slithers around Matthew Egan’s relentlessly churning rhythms and blood-splattering drum fills.
There’s no rock machismo in the sounds of Made Out of Babies, which just might be what makes it so unsettling and unique. Instead, the group bears a mysteriously unified all-out visual and aural aesthetic assault reminiscent of mid-period Black Flag. And yet, there’s a certain curious glamour to MOoB that gives it a monolithic appeal.
MOoB’s sophomore album was recorded with the equally intimidating Steve Albini at Electrical Audio in Chicago, which could only be described as a match made in… loud. Where its previous album condensed its songs into a single psychotic impulse, Coward blasts its sound inward as well as outward, like a cathartic supernova from a band driven beyond any point of being rational.
From the very first throat-searing yowl that opens the album, Coward is, quite simply, bigger that you. “Proud To Drown” lurches with Cooper’s staccato bass line tugging at Eagan’s pulsating 6/8 drum pattern while Tobin’s Middle Eastern tinged riff winds it all up to erupt. While “Fed” temporarily cools the band’s frenetic energy to greasy throb, it seems primarily to highlight the fact that Julie can really sing – not that any of us are likely to coax a sweet lullaby out of her anytime soon. But, her vocal acrobatics — leaping effortlessly from a demure whisper to a note-perfect murderous scream — are in finest form here, reminiscent of Leslie Rankine of Silverfish and/or a more demented Karen O of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Throughout, the album Made Out of Babies remains evocative, intimidating, brutally frank and — as the International rock press shouted with glee over the band’s stunning debut – by far Neurot Recordings’ most unabashedly rocking outfit.