be your own PET

The laws of music journalism state that when a precociously good new band comes along, one must harp on the members' ages. So, okay, blah blah blah, the four members of be your own PET, from Nashville, are all teenagers, the oldest just barely legal.

Great — now that's out of the way. Rock and roll arguably has always been the music of teenagers, if not performed by them and then consumed by them. But pubescent performers were also responsible for some of the genre's biggest breakthroughs. Just one example: The Kinks' Dave Davies was only seventeen when he slashed his guitar amplifier to create the signature distorted sound of the band's breakout hit "You Really Got Me." Still, the fresh-faced never fail to ignite a media frenzy, especially with the advent of the music blogosphere. The skinny teens of be your own PET have released just one full-length album, this year's self-titled debut. But they've already played several legendary UK festivals, like Glastonbury; spawned rabid fan Websites; and posed in white-hot designer duds for fawning hipster magazine spreads. But all of that and annoying band name capitalization aside, these kiddies deliver a screeching garage-rock punch worthy of a match with the heavyweights. Crunchy guitar courtesy of a love affair with the Stooges? Check. Pop hooks created with inane repetition, à la the Ramones? You got it (some song titles: "Damn Damn Leash," "Extra Extra," "Bicycle, Bicycle, You Are My Bicycle"). Then there's the firecracker of a frontwoman, a platinum-haired siren with a piercing wail and an unforgettable name: Jemina Pearl Abegg. So they're loud. A little snot-nosed. Catchy as hell. In other words, rock and roll in its purest form. — Arielle Castillo


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