CD Review: ‘Shake Electric ‘ by Spiders

Scandinavia is a hotbed for vintage rock music as of late. Swedish rock outfit Spiders keep the rock coming on its sophomore effort, Shake Electric. The album kicks off with the hard boogie of “Mad Dog,” that instantly recalls The Stooges with its primal ferocity. The title track blends subtle psychedelia with crunchy riffing with nice results. Vocalist Ann Hoyles has an urgency in her voice that compliments the celebratory nature of the lyrics. The hard hitting “Bleeding Heart” is simple rock n’ roll done right as guitarist John Hoyles throws out some thick riffs. There is a punk attitude on this track that is every much New York Dolls as it is AC/DC. The grooving “Lonely Nights” has a catchy, memorable riff that hooks the listener in. The wah heavy guitar lead is the icing on the cake. This track is sure to be a fan favorite. The band even speeds things up on the manic “Control.” It is not a speed track, but there is a proto-punk vibe to this track.

Producer Mattias Glava masterfully captures the lo-fi production heard on Seventies punk records, but the quality is top notch. The sound is not muffled and each instrument is present along with Ann’s vocals. There is a nice thickness to the guitar and bass, giving the songs greater punch.

Shake Electric is a great rock record, that further cements Scandinavia’s reputation for producing strong rock music. The band gives ample tribute to its influences in bands like The Stooges, Kiss and The Ramones. Yet, it also holds its own among contemporaries like Queens of the Stone Age and Witchcraft. Modern rock fans may not appreciate the group’s vintage sound. However, fans of old school rock will certainly like this record for its musicianship and production.

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