Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Graveyard: Hisingen Blues (2011)


Even if Sweden doesn't have a total monopoly on the retro metal fad, they have all the biggest names, with Ghost, In Solitude, and Portrait being among the best. Graveyard goes even further back than Ghost, to the proto-metal bluesy hard rock days of 1968.

I'm a little late to Graveyard's party, as they had their debut in 2008 and the follow-up Hisingen Blues was released all the way back in April. Around the time this came out I was digging into Blue Cheer and the first four Led Zeppelin albums, but this would have scratched that itch just as well. In fact, the Swedes sound a lot like those bands, from the fuzzy guitars down to the Robert Plant-like vocals.

The music is just as catchy as anything Zepp has done, too, or virtually so. Song-for-song, this is just as good, although purely based on timing it's not as essential. People forget there were a lot of duds on those timeless albums. Highlights for this one include the title track, closer "The Siren", and especially "Buying Truth (Tack och Förlåt)". The only weak number on here is "Uncomfortably Numb". And, like many classics, they throw in one curveball: the spaghetti western soundtrack of "Longing".

The Verdict: This is one kind of retro that I can get. It's true in spirit and sound to the glory days of rock and roll--i.e., 1968 through 1972--without sounding derivative. I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars.


  1. I found this really boring to be honest. Porridge rock. I was really disappointed, which is funny because I don't mind a bit of proper rock.

  2. That's kind of how the Decibel review saw it. But it just rocks me.