Music » Critics' Picks

Detroit Cobras

9 p.m. Saturday, September 20. Off Broadway, 3509 Lemp Avenue.

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Flea market crate-diggers have many admirable qualities, but torrid, guttural and sexy are not among them. In their heart of hearts, the Detroit Cobras are obscure soul and R&B geeks; in its collective loins the band is a bunch of rock & roll primitives aping nothing. The group plays what it feels when it mainlines the adrenaline of history, an approach that's the polar opposite of "retro." In lead dominatrix Rachel Nagy the Cobras have the cougar-purring apotheosis of a rock singer; in its rhythm section it has the casting call for Night of the Living Stooges. The band reaches for the basest of sources, evidenced by the recent Munster collection Original Recordings 1995-1997, a lo-fi, uncouth set of early singles and rarities that spits the bubble gum onto a junk-strewn garage floor and grinds it under a boot worn from kicking and shaking your ass.

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