Black Belt Theatre: Superbitch
Hooray for hard rock that summons gumption and fortitude. With roots in the kind of metal that predates any need for qualifiers (e.g., speed, power, death, crust, et al.) and the harder edge of power pop exemplified by fellow Midwesterners such as Cheap Trick and Off Broadway, Milwaukee’s Black Belt Theatre concoct a welcome tonic countering the emotional direness of current commercial radio hard music.
And commercial they are, offsetting vocal hooks and harmonies with an instrumental attack heavy enough to satisfy air guitarists who can appreciate crunchy riffs without technical self-indulgence. And though the quartet has roots in local bands who were post-grunge purveyors and would morph into emo-punk innovators, Black Belt Theatre’s lyrical outlook evinces a refreshing dearth of the self-pity so prevalent on any given episode of Nikki Sixx’s weekly rock radio countdown in recent months.