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Critic's Choice

Forget the supposed rock-and-roll revival of the Limp Bizkit and Slipknot posses. L.A.s Bellrays, Saturday, June 24, at the 15th Street Tavern, are all about the rock-and-soul revisitation. Sounding not unlike the Stooges fronted by Tina Turner, the Bellrays just may be one of the best live bands in the country right now; recently the group was named Best Los Angeles Rock Band by L.A. Weekly. Lead singer Lisa Kekaulas vocals are electrifyingly smooth and real, and Bob Vennums guitar work sounds as if it were plucked out of a recording studio circa 1969. All fuzzed-out analog crackle, their full-length Let It Blast is a slap in the face of every band that uses studio trickery to reach their listeners. All the Bellrays need are loud guitars and passionate vocals. Theyve got both sides of the Motor City sound -- Motown soul and MC5 rock -- down pat, as well as a reverence for real punk that borders on religion.