Music » Music Stories & Interviews

Newborn reflexes

Brooklyn rock duo Boom Chick may be young but they channel some distinguished Delta sounds


  • Sarah Van Cor-Hosmer

Boom Chick

8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 18
McRaney’s Tavern

They’re called Boom Chick and, yes, there’s a female drummer, but the fountainhead of the Brooklyn band’s moniker isn’t so much rooted in feminine sass as it is in sonic fundamentals.

“[Singer-guitarist] Frank [Hoier] one day invited me to sit down at the drums,” says drummer Moselle Spiller. “It was in his father’s garage on his father’s old vintage drum kit, and we were just playing around. And he said, ‘Just try a beat going ‘boom chick, boom chick,’ and it was really those keywords that just made it click for me. I had never played music before.”

After performing at a loft party in the Bushwick neighborhood at which they played the only three originals they had at that point and some covers, people kept asking what their band name was. “So we decided to call it Boom Chick because it was just kind of going back to that first thing that made it click,” Spiller says.

In many ways, that simplicity reflects their stripped aesthetic. But Boom Chick’s specialty template is now part of the common lexicon. And any guitar-and-drum duo that redraws the blues and early American rock & roll in their own primal likeness will forever draw comparisons to the Black Keys and especially the White Stripes.

“That’s totally cool with us because we love both of those bands very much,” Spiller says. “And we definitely love the same things that the White Stripes take inspiration from. We love early American music and slide Delta blues and ’50s rock & roll. But I think that a true fan of either of those two bands, once they’ve heard us, would not think we were so similar to them.”

Although the comparisons are justifiable, Boom Chick is far more religious to the Delta blues, and their stomping, hot-revving slide action is more akin to Immortal Lee County Killers and the Hex Tremors, only with a hoot-howling rock & roll heart instead of those other bands’ hard punk edge. Raw sonic immediacy, however, is something they can all agree on.

“We had the opportunity to be in a very professional studio, and we had access to all the tools that could make a very polished sounding album,” Spiller says. “But we chose to record it mostly live. And so that is the reason for this raw sound. And I think because we’re a two-piece and we’re so limited with our sound, we didn’t want the album to sound different than our live show.”

Since their official 2009 birth, Boom Chick has self-released a debut album (2010’s Show Pony) and had their music featured in videos for Thrasher magazine and Element skateboards. January will see the release of a series of 7-inches and a value-priced sophomore LP. But for now, they’re in the thick of their third national campaign, and the topic of joyful energy keeps coming up, a promising omen for what they bring live.

“I don’t think you can play rock & roll when you’re not channeling a certain joy,” Spiller says. “And you have to have the energy. For me, I feel like I’m running a 5K or something. I’m just giving, giving, giving.”

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