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coverpic flag Norway - Full Moon 209 - 09/19/13

Death By Unga Bunga
You're An Animal
Jansen Plateproduksjon

It's not difficult to enjoy Death By Unga Bunga's third album. It's a short (clocks in at less than 36 minutes) and sweet demonstration of 1960s flavoured classic pop and garage rock with a little something extra. Here are fuzzy Farfisa, ditto and confident guitars, but also more clean-cut songs. It seems the band is about to leave the garage soundwise. At least half the songs sound closer to a well equipped studio than the garage. Which means the songs are not as linked to the 1960s as on the band's previous albums. Closer to contemporary pop. That said, I like my garage rock to be rough and ready. Occasionally, You're An Animal is about to be too polished for its own good. It's compensated by some great pop songs and production that suits. And from the latter perspective the album doesn't sound polished at all.

Personal favourites comes from the extremes on offer here. The full throttle of "Suspicion" with fuzzed out guitars and dynamic horns. The title track with fascinating Farfisa-runs, a heavy guitar groove and a matching riff that sort of combines The Clash with early Kinks. Whereas "Abba" is another dynamic with some a bit calmer parts in between the Farfisa and guitar cascades and passionate shouts. It's the only cover version of the album, from a quite obscure single released in 1967 by a band from North Carolina, USA called The Paragons. It has very little to do with the Swedish pop quartet established a few years later, to say the least. "I'm Not The One" starts with a little psychedelic-alike intro (backwards guitar and a piano alike keyboard that evolves into a pretty and catchy pop ballad that fits all seasons, the present decade and the previous five. "Lesson Learned The Hard Way" manage to combine the power with great pop sensibility. Another favourite.

I guess I'll prefer the wilder, noisier and shoutier Death By Unga Bunga alive and kicking to the studio version if the surroundings are right. I'd recommend the new album anyway. It shows, to some extent, a subtler side of the band that fits your living room, kitchen, sleeping room... whatever and probably a stroll out in the autumn rain, too!

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