Oh yeah, I'm down with the Hives all right. Way down. But Veni Vidi Vicious is not my favorite Swedish rock album of 2002. That honor goes to this red-hot little number right here.
Like Mick and Keith when they were young and spry, the men from Division of Laura Lee strut, slither and prowl with their sexuality on their sleeve. They play raw and rugged, with the Stones, the Stooges, Sonic Youth and Primal Scream all looking over their shoulders like proud parents. And proud they should be. The band's heavy-hitters, like the tightly cranked "Access Identity," match the Hives chord-for-power-chord. Best of this tremendous lot is "Number One," which smokes with a clever blend of girl-pop and Seeds-style garage roar. But DOLL also prove themselves masters of the haunted-yet-masculine ballad --- "I Walk on Broken Glass" recalls a very young Aerosmith, while their ode to isolation, "Trapped In," takes cues from Stone Roses and Joy Division.
If there's a bad song here anywhere, I've yet to find it; Black City is undoubtedly one of this year's swankest platters. But I suppose DOLL say it best themselves: "You need to get some."
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