Nowadays rock is everywhere. Real rock ’n’ roll, however, has become a rarefied taste. It may be going the way of the connoisseur, the path of bebop and pinot noir. Meanwhile, Milwaukee’s Aimless Blades are doing their part to keep rock ’n’ roll alive and in the moment, delivered with unpretentious intelligence and grit, with their fourth CD, Rara Avis.
Released on Madison’s famed Boat Records, Rara Avis features guitar riffs of surging melancholy over solid yet forward rolling rhythms. The lyrics suggest more than they say, opening the window in the listeners’ imagination that began to close with the advent of literal-minded music videos. There are echoes of swampy Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Stooges‚ serrated psychedelia, Bob Dylan’s husky twang, even the stately folk rock of Fairport Convention.