HANNI EL KHATIB
Will the Guns Come Out
(out of five)
"Build. Destroy. Rebuild." off Hanni El Khatib's Will the Guns Come Out is the kind of song you put on repeat for weeks. Stout and rambunctious, it's got all the necessary ingredients for a generational anthem—primal, infectious garage riff, springing drums, and generation-defining lyrics ("Ain't no future/In the youth/Ain't no more culture/Than your crew" or "And sometimes/We're gonna make you sick/Just close your eyes/And you won't see shit," and then the chorus "Gotta build/And destroy/And rebuild/And destroy"). Just sayin'.
Born to Palestinian and Filipino immigrants, Khatib is something of an early rock-and-blues-revival renaissance man, a bridge between Greil Marcus's Old Weird America to doo-wop, R&B, garage rock, and finally to the new globalized America. If you need more evidence for that last one, the final track on the album, the cover of Funkadelic's "I Got a Thing," with its guttural blues-guitar hook, loose drums, and chorused vocals, has been chosen as the theme song for Nike's 2011 global ad campaign.