NASTY IDOLS – Kalifornia (2012)

NASTY IDOLS - Kalifornia (2012)


NASTY IDOLS are rightfully considered by many as the godfathers of Swedish hard rockin’ glam & sleaze.

When the band exploded onto the scene in 1989 there were only a handful of countrymen sailing the same musical waters including Shotgun Messiah and Glorious Bankrobbers, and when they decided to call it a day in 1995 the scene had almost completely vanished.

Unlike some outfits that started out as eyeliner and hairspray junkies but made a 360 degree turn when glam and sleaze went out of fashion, Andy Pierce and his bandmates have always stayed true to their sound although they did beef it up a bit along the way.

Their 2002 quite heavy album re-ignited interest in the band which eventually led to an actual reunion gig at Sweden Rock in 2006.

Many fans of the genre were more than happy to see the guys rockin’ once again and hope grew for a new record to see the light of day. The prayers were answered with the release of ‘Boys Town’ in 2009 that saw Nasty Idols pick up where they had left of with ‘Vicious’ in 1993.

And now the guys present their latest 11 song collection entitled “Kalifornia” that falls in somewhere between 1991’s ‘Cruel Intention’ (the benchmark for Nasty Idols as far as I’m concerned) and the already mentioned ‘Vicious’ opus while there are also touches from Machinegun Kelly, the outfit formed by Pierce after the demise of the Idols.

Nucleus of the Swedish outfit since day one are said Mr Pierce and bass player Dick Qwarfort. Andy Pierce isn’t just the voice of the band but also the face and main songwriter having a hand in each of the tracks included.

The album starts off great with vitriolic opener “No Rules” that pretty much sets the tone for most of the album with its chugging riff and Andy spitting out the vocals like a rabid dog.

Up next is the ominous sounding title track that threw my right back to Machinegun Kelly’s 1995 opus ‘White Line Offside’, followed by the melodious “1969 (This Ain’t The Summer Of Love)” where guitarist Peter Espinoza delivers some fine axe work throughout the tune and the use of a Hammond organ gives it a vintage touch.

The headbangin’ “Night By Night” is classic Nasty Idols and the same can be said of the album’s finest cut “Sister Sin”. In fact both could have come straight of their early albums. Two slices of high-end Swedish sleazy hard rock with the latter being extremely intoxicating.

Other cuts worthy of some extra attention are the cowbell infested, tailor made for party “Sweet Suicide” and the ballsy, fast-paced “Jack In The Box”.

Bringing the disc to close are the subtle sounds of “Since U Been Gone”, a power ballad with a ‘Whiter Shade Of Pale’ feeling.

“Kalifornia” is a very good hard rock record that rocks from the start to finish, delivering eleven songs in the pure Nasty Idols sleaze tradition.

It is mostly oriented to the early nineties sounds, which means that it is full of pissed off and fast tracks with a couple of slower tunes including a great ballad. It’s that kind of ‘kick ass’ record which hooks you at first listen.

Nasty Idols may not be the youngest band on the current Swedish scene but with “Kalifornia” they proof that there’s still plenty of life in the old dogs yet.

Good One.

1. No More Rules

2. Kalifornia

3. 1969 (This Ain’t The Summer Of Love)

4. Night By Night

5. Nightstalkin’

6. Sister Sin

7. Pleasure Of The Pain

8. Roadtrip

9. Sweet Suicide

10. Jack In The Box

11. Since U Been Gone

Andy Pierce – Vocals

Peter Espinoza – Guitars

Dick Qwarfort – Bass

Rikki Dahl – Drums


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