HARD ACTION - Hot Wired Beat
December 6, 2017, a year ago
Fans who are still bemoaning the disbanding of The Hellacopters some nine years ago perk up your ears. Out of Finland (not too far from the latter's native Sweden) comes the second coming of the band in the form of Hard Action. The Hellacopters issued a hard hitting garage rock debut in 1996 (Supershitty To The Max!) and over seven full-lengths gradually evolved into a more polished rock 'n' roll band. Following the same trajectory, Hard Action's 2015 debut (Sinister Vibes) smacked listeners in the face with its over-the-top swagger/energy and this sophomore release sees the band adding a modicum of melody and hooks to the mix. Add that Gynstra's vocals are a dead ringer for The Hellacopters' Nicke Anderson (ex-Entombed) and there you can make the obvious connections between the bands.
All nine tracks (totaling 32 minutes) are uber quality, memorable high energy rock 'n' roll that grows with repeated listens. Highlights include the raucous "Tied Down" and "Knocked Down, Dragged Out" tandem near the tail end of the release, as well as the hooky "Running Start" that would make radio blush if it were ever given a chance. And those guitar solos - yowza. If there was a chance that a listener wasn't paying attention, these solos-on-stun will wake them up but quick. Check out the quakes on opener "Free Fall" for a good dose of guitar bliss. There just isn't enough hard rock 'n' roll doing the rounds anymore. This'll be on this reviewer's top ten list at the end of the year for sure.