Author: Jan Jakobsen
Band: The Good the Bad and the Zugly
Album: Hadeland Hardcore
Label: Fysisk Format
I am by no means a hardcore punk expert, I wouldn’t even go as far and say I’m a particularly big fan of hardcore punk, but I know what I like and The Good the Bad and the Zugly is definitely one of my favorite bands within the genre. Their music is firmly rooted in hardcore punk, but they’ve also got some hard-rock influence that’s very noticeable on certain tracks on this new album, Hadeland Hardcore and their discography in general. In many ways I would say they’re Turbonegros more chaotic and heavier little brother. Their 2013 debut full-length Anti World Music was a celebration of catchy and fun hardcore and they have since then changed vocalist, but their sound is very much in the same vein. What I mean by catchy and fun hardcore is not to be taken the wrong way, their sound is still firmly rooted in the old-school.
The opening track of the album Who Will Save Scandirock? is of course a rhetorical question and the lyrics in general on this album is meant to either be taken ironically or humorously. “Drink beer, feel fine, take drugs, fuck life, I live, you die” is sung on the opening track and in many ways serves as a motto for the entire album.
The tracks differ in sound from the more classic hardcore punk sound on Hate Will Get Us Everywhere and Natural Born Nettroll to hard-rock inspired riffs on Partyfest & Apathy and the opening track. There is no time for breaks on this 33-minute neck breaker, but that doesn’t mean it’s particularly difficult on the ears. The riffs are so catchy that you won’t be getting bored anytime soon. In addition to the great riffing, The Good The Bad and The Zugly use samples of some notable phrases said by Yngwie Malmsteen and Dave Mustaine on How Can Less Be More and Jag Är Inte Bitter. The last one translates to “I’m not bitter” and I’ll leave it up to you to guess which of the two is sampled on this track. The intro to Death to Firesouls sounds like something straight out of the second wave of black metal that Norway has gotten so famous for but the song quickly changes into standard hardcore punk.
Like I said in the opening of this review, I don’t listen to that much hardcore punk so it’s difficult for me to give this a rating because I don’t know how it holds up to other modern hardcore punk albums. In general, I enjoy almost everything on this record and especially the hard-rock inspired stuff. I leave with a piece of wisdom. Oil is thicker than blood. Welcome to Norway, bitch.
- Jan Jakobsen