Joan Jett stomped onto the stage of the Psychedeli Saturday night wearing a black spandex jumpsuit with white fringe, a black bandanna tied to her waist and black sneakers. Heavy makeup was planted to her face and she defiantly waved her jet black (what else?) hair. The effect was nothing short of, er, dippy.
Ah, but what dippiness. When Jett and her three-piece backup group, the Black Hearts, stormed into the first song, the image and sound were fused into a single, devastating force. Slashing guitars, Neanderthal drums and a thumping bass combined with Jett's pimply appeal to produce a show that was an invigorating display of roughedged rock 'n' roll.
The performance was neither fancy nor polished. Jett's husky vocals careened off of wild solos and simple harmonies, and she spat out lyrics that expressed a barely contained teen-aged angst. Bouncing about like a bunch of crazed marionettes, the group delivered raucous versions of Sam the Sham's "Woolly Bully" and the classic, "Shout" (which was, naturally, shouted above the earsplitting wall of sound). At times, the club and the crowd almost came unglued.
Joan Jett and the Black Heart's performance produced more than a few headaches (or earaches as the case may be) -- a small price to pay for hearing rock music of such obnoxiously thrilling proportions.