The Detroit Cobras
First Appeared in The Music Box, December 2005, Volume 12, #12
Written by T.J. Simon
Fans of The White Stripes and The Reigning Sound will find a lot to enjoy on The Detroit Cobras’ latest release Baby. The concept behind the band’s approach is fairly simple: apply a garage-rock twist to obscure soul and R&B songs from the ’50s and ’60s. What separates The Detroit Cobras from the average, local wedding band is the energy brought forth by lead singer Rachel Nagy, whose voice recalls The Pretenders’ Chrissie Hynde on a very good day.
The U.S. release of Baby contains 20 songs — seven more than its U.K.-issued counterpart. The additional tracks are drawn from The Detroit Cobras’ 2004 EP Seven Easy Pieces, and these tend to be the album’s strongest moments, particularly the utterly perfect My Baby Loves the Secret Agent and the guitar fireworks show of Heartbeat. Nagy is at her best on sweaty, up-tempo numbers like I Wanna Holler (But the Town’s too Small) and Mean Man, but unfortunately, things start to sound like a bit of a put-on (á la The Commitments) on slower fare such as It’s Raining and the blues-y Silver & Gold (When I Get Like This).
Throughout Baby, Nagy’s delivery bristles with a vigor unseen in many groups today, but at the end of the day, The Detroit Cobras is little more than a cover band — albeit a rather spirited one. Yet, although the ensemble’s hard-driving interpretations of soul songs aren’t likely to change anyone’s life, Baby still makes for a fun-filled dose of garage-rock nostalgia. ˝
Baby is available from Barnes & Noble.
To order, Click Here!
1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2005 The Music Box