Naked Raygun wore its influences on its proverbial sleeve, and then played them for its encores Monday at the 9:30 club. When the band ripped into Cheap Trick's "Surrender" and the Jam's "This Is the Modern World," it made perfect sense.
Late '70s punk, hard rock and power pop come together in equal parts in this Chicago band, but it's not as if they create music in a time capsule; on more recent songs, such as "Peacemaker" and "Dog at Large," the foursome stretches itself out in scratchy grooves that wouldn't sound out of place next to D.C.'s Fugazi and Holy Rollers. They played two brand-new numbers, "The Grind" and "Prepare to Die," that show where Raygun's heart still lies -- in the sound of early Clash and Buzzcocks, with single-note guitar lines and crashing chords from former Washingtonian Bill Stephens, and big shouted "oh-oh-ohs" from singer Jeff Pezatti.
The sound was very good, loud and thumping but still allowing the words to be heard (including "If any of you stage divers knocks my mike stand again, I'm gonna rip your lungs out," coming from bassist Pierre Kezdy). This is a great punk band whose members haven't forgotten why they started playing music, or what makes the music work.