The Vaselines are back; tell a friend.

The 90’s garage-rock phenomenon is back together, better than ever.

20 years later, Eugene Kelly and Frances Mckee have still got it.

Image by Sub Pop Records/Wattie Cheung

20 years later, Eugene Kelly and Frances Mckee have still got it.

by Sally Hedberg

What: The Vaselines with the Dum Dum Girls

When: Oct.27th

Where: The Varsity Theater

Cost: $18

The early âÄô90s were an important time for the charming Scottish duo The Vaselines. They released their first full-length album, âÄúDum-Dum,âÄù they were pushed into musical prominence when Kurt Cobain started covering their songs with Nirvana and then, on the brink of a promising career, they broke up for nearly 20 years.

Well, the Vaselines are back, with both a second album, âÄúSex With an X,âÄù and a tour that will carry them to the Varsity Theater on Wednesday.

âÄòIt feels pretty good to be back,âÄù said guitarist and vocalist Eugene Kelly. âÄúWe kind of know what weâÄôre doing by now.âÄù

The band forged their initial mark through the creation of simplistic âÄô60s garage-rock, made all the more appealing by the vocal dynamic of Kelly and  Frances Mckee.Draw to mind a more light-hearted and fun version of Lee Hazlewood and Nancy Sinatra, add some hook-heavy pop and itâÄôs essentially The Vaselines.

Twenty years is hardly a pause in the scheme of a musical career, but the breakup wasnâÄôt overly bitter and the musicians still maintained communication. They also kept busy with solo work and side projects âÄî Kelly even got the opportunity to tour with Nirvana for a while.

âÄúIt was very exciting to watch a band on the edge of big success,âÄù Kelly said.

After reuniting for a tour to promote their solo albums in 2006, Mckee and Kelly began to muse over the idea of a second Vaselines album and a possible reformation. Pulling from material they had already written and penning a handful of new tracks, they slapped 14 songs together and called it an album.

 With age have come wisdom and skill.

âÄúI think weâÄôve definitely got better and more confident,âÄù said Kelly. âÄúWay back then we couldnâÄôt play guitar very well and didnâÄôt know what we were doing on stage. We had a bit of a snotty arrogance to mask the fact that we were really nervous about what we were doing.âÄù

Now itâÄôs the young ones that are looking up to The Vaselines as an important rock influence. Joining them in Minneapolis will be the Dum Dum Girls, whose name explicitly alludes to both an Iggy Pop song and the VaselinesâÄô debut album. Though their influence is undeniable, the band remains remarkably humble.

âÄúWe donâÄôt even think about that fact that theyâÄôve mentioned us as an influence,âÄù said Kelly. âÄúWe donâÄôt think that we could be influential in any way.âÄù

Whether they believe it, their work speaks for itself. âÄúSex With an XâÄù is a great second album, not just because of the exciting reunion, but also because, quite literally, these musicians know what theyâÄôre doing and have created a damn impressivealbum.

Kurt Cobain may have famously put them on the map, but itâÄôs pretty evident that The Vaselines never lacked direction. Though, their experience with Cobain is something not easily forgotten.

âÄúIâÄôve asked myself this many times and I just donâÄôt know,âÄù said Kelly. âÄúI would love to know what he made of us, but we canâÄôt.âÄù