Pushing Scandinavian Rock to the Man! – Vol. 2 – Review

Pushing Scandinavian Rock to the Man!

Vol. 2 (Bad Afro)
by Jon Sarre

I took some time off a while back (due to burnout, lifestyle change and the pressure of havin’ somethin’ new to say everyonceinawhile). I didn’t really worry about missin’ out on the deluge of Scandinavian rock’n’roll bands… Quite the opposite. I thought I’d heard all the Swedishcidal, Finnskirific, Norsaholic’n’Denmarkofthebeast stuff I was gonna hear. Much like thinkin’ I could live without free stuff comin’ to me in the mail, I realized I was sadly mistaken. So here’s the second volume of Bad Afro’s Pushing Scandinavian Rock to the Man!. There’re some familiar names, most of ’em, tho’, are not too well-known to me. The invasion continues, but I think it’s a friendly one. Just supply plentya vodka and they’ll probably leave ya be.

Royal Beat Conspiracy kicks the thing off with “Here Come the Girls,” it’s a little too slow, but at the same time, as singleminded’n’direct as anything on the Back From the Grave comp, tho’ the glamminess factor updates it to at least 1973. The Chronics‘ cut, “Rub Off,” was probably supposed to be “Buzz Off,” cuz that’s where they seem to be goin’, and I like how the drums sound like monster garbage cans. The Maggots sound like the Mighty Caesars fronted by the Detroit Cobras’ Rachel Nagy’s younger brother, so take that as you will. The Flaming Sideburns are fuckin’ great: New York Dolls with tongue-in-cheek Kissian (or mebbe Turbonegroean) pretensions to rockdumb, yet as grimy as the Stones at their dirtiest. Mother Superior do “Have You Seen that Cat,” doubtlessly inspired by an early take of “TV Eye,” yet almost taken literally (tho’ it’s about some guy, not a pussy). Most everything else seems inspired by DMZ hi-jackin’ a Wailers tune. I fugget if the Burnouts think they’re doin’ psychobilly, but it sounds that way and their “No Erection, No Love” gets points for sheer obviousness. The Rockets ain’t that band who usedta pal around with Neil Young (see Neil’s “Running Dry (Requiem For the Rockets)” offa Everybody Knows This is Nowhere), cuz I doubt those guys sounded like AC/DC (or will, once they blow out some more brain cells). Branded Women cut down on the way-more-than-USDA-recommended dosage of testosterone that this record provides, but their Crampsy blues give ya a little breather… Ready… breathe!

That over with, the Festermen are real messy, so messy it’s annoyin’, but when they do the chorus to “Satan Found Out,” everything clears up and the drums sound h-u-u-u-u-u-g-g-ge and the way-too-fast slide guitar solo is great. Next the Royal Beat Conspiracy come back as Sam & Dave in whiteface, so that’s pretty weird. The Colombian Neckties have some members who usedta be in Shake Appeal, so it makes sense (to me, anyway) that they sound a bit like New Bomb Turks. The Peepshows are loud’n’fuzzy like they’re The Hellacopters’ little punk rock brothers. Mother Superior come back with “Stand Up and Be Counted,” which sounds like The Rolling Stones coverin’ the MC5, but it isn’t as stupid as that would appear. Also reappearin’ for another quickie are the Burnouts, who this time sound as much like New Bomb Turks as New Bomb Turks do (and much more than the Colombian Neckties do). Comin’ off that, the Dial TonesDestroy-Oh-Boy garage rock ain’t as fun as it could be, and the Chronics end the whole shebang (until the inevitable volume three) with “Shine On Me,” a radio listenin’ song like “Roadrunner” or “Rock’n’Roll” that ya should be able to listen to on the radio. We’ll see, but don’t hold yer breath.