Payin’ The Dues - The Hellacopters (Sweden)

Label:White Jazz Records
Sup Pop Records
Highlights:You Are Nothing
Where The Action Is
Twist Action

Rating: 9/10

Payin’ The Dues is the second album by Swedish punk rockers, The Hellacopters and from the opening thunderous chords of You Are Nothing, this is one kick arse record. It benefits from having a cleaner and stronger production than their debut Super Shitty To The Max, which gives the band a more powerful presence. Quite simply is one of the finest punk rock albums that I’ve heard in a long time that mixes the non-compromising nature of bands like Stooges and Sonics Rendezvous Band with the sleaziness of the New York Dolls without sounding retro or derivative.

Payin’ The Dues is dominated by guitarists Nicke and Dregen Hellacopter, who are everywhere playing numerous impressive solos and screaming wah-wah duels, especially in songs like Hey!, Soulseller and Where The Action Is. Perhaps more importantly, the songs are also well written to back up their over-the-top playing. However, the most impressive aspect of Payin’ The Dues is the band’s restraint - the average time of each song is under 3 minutes and the lack of bullshit and unnecessary wank is really one of the albums keys. For plugged in, psyched out, fuel-injected rock action, you have to check out the Hellacopters.

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