The Hellacopters

June 22, 2006

Rock & Roll Is Dead

I’m waiting for someone to explain to me why Sweden can turn out kick-ass rock bands, while here in the States we crank out the likes of Kelly Clarkson, Staind, and any number of very un-rocking people. I’m sure there are many answers why this is the case, but for now, I’ve got the Hellacopters. Over the course of ten albums in as many years, the Stockholm-natives have always championed an MC5-type fury with their live shows, being equal parts kick-out-the-jams hellaciousness and rock and roll revival. But empty rock strut and swagger they’re not, because the Hellacopters have the musicianship—as well as the hooks—to back it all up. Rock & Roll Is Dead sports excellent performances from guitarists Robert Dahlqvist and guitarist/singer Nicke Andersson, as they lay down the rock with authority, all without the use of saccharine-laced layers of distortion (gasp), over-effected vocals, or de-tuned riffs. Hell, they even rip a Chuck Berry riff here and there. The amazing thing is, it all sounds way fresh and powerful. Rock and roll may very well be dead, but hey, that doesn’t mean we have to stop liking it and give up all hope. (Liquor and Poker).

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