Scandinavian cool is laid out for the world to take a bite, bare its fangs and groove.
Jyrki Linnankivi hasn’t been procrastinating since letting his solo debut “Helsinki Vampire” out in the streets in 2017, yet the Finnish artist’s latest escapades saw him embrace rockabilly more eagerly than gothic gloom of yore, so, getting back from THE 69 CATS’ strut to THE 69 EYES’ danse macabre, the veteran must feel not only invigorated but also comfortable. Hence, the international shift of his nocturnal shuffle in the company of fellow ghouls who contributed their talent to haunt the “American Vampire” originals alongside choice covers. The result is as entertaining as any death disco should be – and as infectious as hell as well.
Although the edge of “Deviant Carousal” that’s bared closer to the album’s end may summarize its XIU XIU-outlined defiant spirit most eloquently, as the booming vocals are drenched in the glacial electronica, the menacingly cooing Jyrki doesn’t take his sweet time to unleash “SexDrugsRockn’Roll” upon the listener to the heavy riffs supplied by SHOTGUN MESSIAH. These cuts’ choruses carve a nice niche in one’s psyche, which is why the singer’s triumphal take on JEFFERSON’s “White Rabbit” – where translucent strum and the soaring of Steve Stevens’ six strings aid and abet his attempt to feed the fans’ head – or his and Tiffany’s duet on THE HUMAN LEAGUE’s “Don’t You Want Me” are bound to stay on many a playlist.
There’s a great bass-spanked twang to the record’s title track that Sköld’s guitar licks spike here and there, and the dry “Dreamtime” will find the Suomi musician dominating the floor that ROSETTA STONE help pave, yet his punk vim on GG Allin’s “Bite It You Scum” is emphasized thanks to LEÆTHER STRIP’s industrial ivories. Still, while THE KVB’s smooth backing on “Decision” render Jyrki’s delivery quite delicate and vibrant – although not to the extent of the folk-informed “Clover” – “Last Dance” which Sköld’s NOT MY GOD infuse with sonic dread seems too disturbing for the album’s finale. Stopping before this piece would make the record bleed effectively enough, because “American Vampire” has a great tang to it.