Not only do they make killer music, as evidenced on their just-released album Lex Hives, but they rocked when they played the recent Coachella Music Festival in California. Not only was the band dressed in tails and top hats during the steamy, outdoor festival but they are used to the chilly climate of their home land Sweden.
"That's part of the fun," said Hives' front man Howlin' Pelle Almqvist of the attire. "We want to do things that are completely unexpected at our shows."
|Where: 9:30 Club, 815 V St. NW|
|When: 7 p.m. doors, Tuesday|
|Info: As of presstime, the show is sold out, but tickets may be available through online resellers; 930.com|
That's also true for their recorded music. Although the Hives made a name for themselves as one of the best live garage rock bands in the past decade, their latest release has them high on critics' buzz worthy lists, too.
"Lex Hives picks up where 2004's brain-bashing Tyrannosaurus Hives left off, cutting a broad swath of destruction through proto-punk and garage rock on the way to achieving arena-sized glam," wrote a critic for Spin magazine. "The Hives rarely break from the celebratory gut-rippers that made them famous."
Perhaps that's because the band recorded the album live. They also took their time, in this case five years, to make an album they thought could be a masterpiece.
To hear Almqvist talk about it, creating the album was something of a gut wrenching business. The band had more than 150 songs -- or parts of songs -- through which they weeded to find the very best. Culling them down and then fine tuning the arrangements, the instrumentation, the lyrics and every nuance was a painstaking process. But that was the only way Almqvist said he knew the band would be satisfied.
After all, the five-piece band is in it for the long haul. They formed almost 20 years ago but didn't really make a name for themselves until about 10 years ago. In fact, the band's greatest hits album "Your New Favourite Band" is what boosted them into international consciousness due to the release of two singles "Main Offender" and "Hate to Say I Told You So."
Now with the critical raves from Coachella and about the album, Almqvist thinks the band's time has finally arrived.
When asked what he would talk to reporters about next year, he could hardly contain his glee: "We will be talking about our world tour. Our very surprisingly successful world tour! And probably new music."