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The Hives

Veni Vidi Vicious

Release Date: 04.30.02
Record label: Burning Heart Records
Genre(s): Movies, Film Scores, Musicals, Etc.


by: bill aicher

In a new rock 'n' roll world where bands like The Strokes and The White Stripes are ushering a new wave of 60s and 70s garage rock aggression it only makes sense that those individuals eating up this direly needed return to roots music expand their search to the punk rock edge of the same era from which these other bands have been extrapolated. And for those individuals looking for a new culmination of 70s punk rock, The Hives are the answer.

Hailing from Sweden, The Hives exemplify everything old school punk rock was about. From the kitsch names like "Vigilante Carlstroem," "Chris Dangerous," and "Howlin 'Pelle Almqvist" to an ultra-swank look of black suits, white ties, and white wingtips, these Swedes positively have "the look" covered. Its the music that remains to be questioned.

Fortunately, with their debut U.S. album, Veni Vidi Vicious, The Hives manage to deliver (for the most part). Building on a steady base of 70s Detroit punk, Vicious comes at you hard and fast - and before you know what hit you it's over. It's old school punk, and fans of classic punk bands The Ramones and The Clash should be more than satisfied.

Still, even with such "get under your skin and infest you" tracks like "A Get Together To Tear It Apart" and "Main Offender," there's nothing here that truly sticks. After a while tracks begin to merge, and nothing quite stands out as something you're sure to remember. It's not a disc of hits, but rather a rather solid collection of punk pastiche. Only on the quirky off-kilter inspriational ballad "Find Another Girl" do The Hives stray from their standard formula, and it makes for the most memorable (and thorouhgly enjoyable) outing.

Fans of the new retro-rock movement will undoubtedly find pleasure in The Hives, but punk-rock afficiandos will do better to stick with the real thing. After all, Detroit punk got it's name for a reason: it's from Detroit. 17-Jun-2002 7:09PM