Rollins Band is one of those rare groups that plays its guts out night after night, leaving nothing onstage but sweat and maybe a little blood.

Rollins Band is one of those rare groups that plays its guts out night after night, leaving nothing onstage but sweat and maybe a little blood. The over-caffeinated rants of frontman Henry Rollins and the savage riffs behind him create a piston-fired frenzy of released aggression as direct and to-the-point as a kick to the head. The Only Way to Know for Sure, a double-disc live set recorded in Chicago in March, captures the band in its most natural element—guns blazing. No overdubs or fancy edits here, just bone-crunching rock and plenty of lyrical bile. As relentless as Rollins is, guitarist Jim Wilson, bassist Marcus Blake, and drummer Jason Mackenroth keep step with muscular rock that's smart enough to sidestep the format's typical clichés. Especially ferocious is "Gone Inside the Zero," disc two's leadoff track, and the follow-up, "Nowhere to Go But Inside."—JDF

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboard

Print