From page 75 of Classic Rock Magazine October 2003
‘The Red, White & Black’ (Poptones)
Hrumph. That’s what I said when someone said that the BellRays were meant to be “like the Stooges fronted by Tina Turner”.
Straight off the streets of Detroit, The BellRays have a lot going for them: stripped-down, amphetamine, angular garage chops lifted inches above the flow of the gutter by Motor City’s other great export, a gurly soul chick with rockin’ dopsy vocals and big, big balls.
The BellRays play fast and tight, and this Anglo collection of their first two domestic releases will have you gasping for air like fish in an almost dried-up river bed. The production is flat, as claustrophobic as ‘Raw Power’ or ‘Songs For The Deaf’. There are only short passages of respite. In a million or so years, these boys might just catch up singer Lisa Kekaula and evolve some funk.
The phosphoric acid queen blanks out at 180bpm, towed into the fast lane by men in devil capes doing their redneck hamfist darnedest not to play gospel blues. Hrumph: they call it maximum rockin’ soul.
★★★★ ★ Derek Hammond