The Cribs, Gibson ES-335Listen to the Cribs' "Men's Needs!"

Now here’s a band who knows how to put on a decent live show.

The Cribs heckle their fans, set off riots on a whim, and don’t think twice about engaging in the kind of deranged behavior that leads to serious, often life-threatening injuries, all in the name of entertainment.

At one show, the entire front row turned around to protest the greasy British pop-punk trio’s unruly behavior. At another, lead singer and guitarist Ryan Jarman took off his shirt and dove headfirst into the pit where he was promptly mistaken by the venue’s bouncers for a rabid fan, causing quite the impressive tussle.

We’ll have the chance to witness the riotous trio from Wakefield, England in action next month, as they bring their brand of unmitigated chaos back to stages across North America in support of their excellent third release, Men’s Needs, Women’s Needs, Whatever (Warner Bros.).

That is, assuming there are no more surprise emergency room visits: Just before the group was scheduled to set off for the trek, Ryan was knocked unconscious during a show in Birmingham while his twin brother, bassist Gary Jarman, suffered blood poisoning two days later following a show in Sheffield.

Originally dismissed as hapless Strokes imitators with the release of their unrefined 2004 self-titled debut, all that hazard-prone time on the road somehow helped the Cribs solidify their musical chops and strengthen their songwriting skills in time to make Men's Needs.

The Cribs

Produced by Franz Ferdinand’s Alex Kapranos, the disc is packed with knockout tunes like “Our Bovine Public” and “I’m A Realist,” which see the band grounding their caustic punk urges (NME said it best: “there isn’t a melody on this record that Abba, the Beatles, or Sugababes would have turned down”).

Ryan Jarman’s angular work on an ES-335 and the group’s holler-along verses have drawn comparisons to the Libertines and Ferdinands, but get past the sound on the surface and the Cribs’ true spiritual forebears are the Replacements, another band that could not only make snotty punk anthems sound like desperate emotional missives, but also knew a thing or two about keeping a crowd on its toes.

THE CRIBS ON TOUR

November 2007
12 - Montreal, Quebec - Cabaret
13 - Ottawa, Ontario - Capitol Music Hall
14 - Toronto, Ontario - Horseshoe Tavern
15 - Boston, MA - The Paradise
17 - Brooklyn, NY - Music Hall of Williamsburg
19 - Cleveland, OH - Grog Shop
20 - Chicago, IL - Double Door
21 - Minneapolis, MN - Varsity Theatre
23 - Edmonton, Alberta - Starlite Room
24 - Calgary, Alberta - Hi-Fi Club
25 - Vancouver, British Columbia - Plaza Nightclub
27 - Seattle, WA - Neumo’s Ballroom
28 - Portland, OR - Doug Fir Lounge
29 - San Francisco, CA - Popscene

December 2007
1 - Los Angeles, CA - El Rey Theatre