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Yeah Yeah Yeahs
The Rave
Milwaukee, WI
May 31, 2009
Yeah Yeah Yeahs Yeah Yeah Yeahs Yeah Yeah Yeahs

Story and photos by Phil Bonyata

The Yeah Yeah Yeahs know how to keeps things fresh. They've released three albums in six years and their progressive evolution would make Charles Darwin take notice. The aggressive guitar assault of 2003's Fever to Tell and the skeletal acoustic flourishes of 2006's Show Your Bones have been replaced with fuzzy synthesizers and buoyant rear door beats on this year's It's Blitz!. Anchoring and fusing the gutty guitar work of Nick Zinner and the bands' intelligent melodies is the dangerously doe like Karen O. With a patterned kimono, red-striped tights and Beatlesque mop of black hair she bent and swayed her body to the percussive melodies of "Dull Life." She posed and preened while never forgetting to engage her audience. Drummer Brian Chase laid down the bumpy, asphalt beats on the deliciously erratic "Bang" while Zimmer joined in on the the fray with his own twisted tale to tell.

The short "Honeybear" found it's infectious elctro-punk leave you with a mouth-watering desire for more. The anthemic "Gold Lion" had the lanky Karen O posing like Joey Ramone, with one knee bent and her body forward while keeping the other leg firmly planted on solid ground. The bleeding distortion an Karen O's siren like shrieks oozed straight from the punk infested streets of New York City circa 1976. The front rows crushed closer to her - just inches away from her potential grasp.

"Skeletons," "Down Boy" and "Dim" displayed all of the crude swagger and genre crashing of punk, dance and crunk rock without any fear of being defined by any one. Karen O's dynamic voice falls somewhere in the fertile middle ground of Siouxsie Sioux and Patti Smith. With defiant confidence and burning falsettos her feminine growl are a thing of low fi beauty and personal catharsis. The shredding chorus and Zimmer's burnt out chords on "Y Control" put it's head willingly into a guillotine while anxiously awaiting the dropping of the dull and rusty blade.

While their entire performance was littered with blood-letting abandon and pre-orgasmic pleasure it is quite interesting how the Yeah Yeah Yeahs are still able to form and maintain a unified structure without a lick of mortar.

Related articles:

Lollapalooza 2007 (Yeah Yeah Yeahs) - Concert review - Chicago, IL - August 2007
Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Concert review - Milwaukee, WI - April 2006
Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Fever To Tell - Album review

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