I loved and still love the first album by Sweden’s Bombus, The Poet and The Parrot. To my ears, it was an instant classic. A mix of old school thrash, modern metal, AC/DC and Motorhead, all thrown together in a pot that produced a spectacular soup. Well, now they’re back with album number three — their second for Century Media Records — and I’m thrilled to report that the third time is a fucking charm. No slumping around here. Not at all. On the contrary, the band has grown even better, perhaps drawing on some different influences. On this album, they remind me of The Wildhearts, Baroness and Eagles of Death Metal. They’re still heavy as hell, but the arrangements are tighter and the songs are catchier. I’m not saying that they’ve gone pop, just that they’ve grown as songwriters. I’m sure they could still make another album like The Poet and The Parrot, but I find it admirable that they didn’t, that they’ve dared to try on some new shoes instead of taking the easy way out. One of the album’s strongest tracks is the opener, “Eyes on the Price.” “Just do it wrong to get it right,” sing co-lead vocalists and co-guitarists Feffe and Matte and it’s contagious enough to have you singing along as you bang your head. As the guitars chug along, crunching away, they even remind me of Queens of the Stone Age now and then. “Deadweight” starts off with a Motorhead-style riff then shifts into something that’s more Overkill. But even though the guitars (and bass and drums) are killer, it’s the chorus that grabs hold of you. It’s totally singable, too. I might as well call these songs arena rock because I can totally see an arena full of metalheads headbanging, moshing and generally going crazy while the band plays these songs. And they’ll probably be even better live, although the album is so fucking strong that it might not be possible. In any case, any self-respecting metalhead should love this blazing album. Like The Poet and The Parrot, it’s got big balls. It just happens to have fantastic hooks, too.
Century Media Records