New LP by Moving Targets provides post-punk music

By Greg Dunlap

While the Moving Targets’ new LP “Brave Noise” borrows heavily from the post-punk movement, it seems that the band owes as much of a debt to Metallica as it does to Husker Du. That’s not an insult either. Combining the energy of heavy metal and the erratic song styles perfected by bands like Mission of Burma, Boston’s Moving Targets have produced a great slab of wax with more freshness and energy than pseudo-rock bands like Bon Jovi or Skid Row could ever dream of.

A great deal of credit for the band’s sound goes to guitarist Ken Chambers, who perfected his particular interpretation of the power chord while working with Bullet LaVolta. Anyone who has heard their record “The Gift” will find a lot more of the same on “Brave Noise.”

But while Bullet LaVolta seemed more intent on playing as fast and furious as possible (and there’s nothing wrong with that), the Targets seem more concerned with writing songs with a pop sensibility.

Don’t let this mislead you either, pop sensibility does not necessarily mean that the Targets use drum machines or get played at McCabe’s. What it means is that in the grand tradition of Husker Du and especially Mission of Burma (who deserve an article unto themselves), the Targets really know how to craft a great tune. A tune which not only rocks like an old lady sitting on her front porch, but also catches your attention and gets you so caught into the melody and swirling guitars that you can often find yourself forgetting what you’re doing as your brain digs into the grooves.

Ken Chamber’s guitars aren’t the only powerhouse on the record either. Pat Brady’s drums completely pummel you into submission on a song like “Things are Going By.” The rolls he hits at the end of that song are like being stuck in the middle of a thunderstorm. Chuck Freeman’s bass lines really get you moving too, making the introduction of the record’s opener “Falling” a real rave-up. And that’s just side one!

While side two mellows it out a little bit, this just proves the Moving Target’s songwriting talent all the more. A band which can write a song as mellow as “Into the Woods” while still holding your interest is a rare one.

“Brave Noise” may not be particularly ground-breaking or unique, (not everyone can write “Murmur” you know) one listen to a song like “CarCrash” or “Nothing Changes” will tell you that you’ve got a great band on your hands. If you’re into a band with a bite or you need a swift kick to get you going on the street, pick up “Brave Noise” by the Moving Targets. You can order the record by sending $8.50 to Taang! records, P.O. Box 51, Auburndale, MA, 02166.