Los Valientes del Mundo Nuevo

Chances are if you think a song must sound good to be good, you will absolutely loathe every frantic second of the Black Lips’ aural trashing of this Tijuana bar. The band has assembled its incendiary live set from its brief and storied history (most songs culled from last year’s brilliant Let It Bloom), and this may be the best live recording since The Kinks’ ’80s double LP One for the Road. Black Lips have stumbled upon the tried-and-true formulas of garage rock (with a nod to The Seeds and 13th Floor Elevators) and injected them with their own myth-making madness swimming in reverb and a ramshackle recklessness that enamored fans of The Replacements. Strangely enough, Los Valientes del Mundo Nuevo may be the only documented instance where a band’s live album surpasses the production and fidelity of its studio output. Buy this for the questionable parenting fable “Fairy Stories” and the sordid pop wad “Dirty Hands” with singer Cole Alexander asking, almost as a warning, “Do you really wanna hold my dirty hands?” Black Lips are the best at what they do—and the scary thing is, as this snapshot proves, they are only getting better.