In eyelinered Chicago goth-pop wannabes Kill Hannah’s sort-of hit “Kennedy,” singer Mat Devine brags that he wants to be a Kennedy and, after living fast and breaking hearts and kissing the girls of centerfolds on the tongue, die young. That’s almost the same thing Jim Reid claimed in the Jesus and Mary Chain’s 1992 “Reverence,” another sort-of hit with slashing guitars and a velvet-hammer beat: “I wanna die just like JFK . . . on a sunny day.” I believed Reid then because he took drugs and was from Scotland, where I don’t think they have Oliver Stone or Abraham Zapruder; I don’t really believe Devine now, because two songs later on For Never & Ever he’s talking about riding the Ferris wheel at Chicago’s tourist trap Navy Pier.
But he’s still the star in this dope show, working a sexed-up androgyne wail that’s way more effective than that Placebo guy’s sugar-pill act. For the rest of the CD Devine sounds more like he wants to be ex-MTV VJ Kennedy than any blue blood who roasted weenies at Hyannisport; electroclash notwithstanding, Kennedy’s mid-’90s reign is the last time Kill Hannah’s airbrushed crunch-rock ruled the Buzz Bin.
Kill Hannah play Bowery Ballroom April 15 and 20.