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coverpic flag Norway - Full Moon 226 - 02/04/15

Darn Those Rebels
A Lifetime Of Resistance By Far

After spending 11 years in prison for importing herbs and challenging the tough Norwegian gardening laws, Rebel Kjell is back in music with Darn Those Rebels and a brand new album suitably titled A Lifetime Of Resistance By Far. He is no newbie though, in the 90's he was the singer for the hardcore/metal experimental outfit Farout Fishing and the punk/hardcore band Bøyen Beng. Darn Those Rebels is also rebel rock at its core. And at its finest. The majority of the tracks here are good old basic hard-hitting rock with a punch, with some punk and a bit of metal added to the mix, metal as in NWOBHM. Or let's just call it rebel rock. The opening "Free 11" celebrates the obvious and the lyrics doubles the impact, effectively setting the framework for the rest of the album. "Weed Bob'n Lula" sounds a bit like a Billy Idol song, while "Victory (Generation Y)" is bluesy and would not have been out of place on a George Thorogood album. "Rolling Stoner" is a highlight, catchy enough to make you want to play it over again instantly. The album ends with another bang, "You'll Never Walk Alone" is an upbeat sing-a-long catchy hard rocker which makes everything feel good, and almost makes me wants to dance.

But there is more to this album than energetic rockers. "Beat The Clock (Time Is Now)" calms things down, based on a loopy bass-walk rotating around a steady rhythm while a keyboard adds lush tones reminiscent of The Doors and their "Riders on the Storm". "Awake (Generation Y)" spins up something entirely else, moving towards the psychedelic and tribal, not that far from what the Swedish band Goat are up to these days. Two of the songs on the album are in Norwegian, "Løfte" ("Promise") is a darker affair, with a guitar that sounds more post-punk like, stretching it a bit I can hear similarities to The Birthday Party. "Stille" ("Quiet") also works fine although it is basically a very simple hardrock ballad.

The A-side ends with extracts from president Kennedy's "free and independent" speach, with these three words repeating in a locked groove. Which leads us to the included booklet. It contains the lyrics for only one of the songs, and feels more like a small zine of anarchistic and anti-authoritarian ramblings, spiced up with a little conspiracy theory and fight-the-power type slogans. Whether all this adds up I don't know, but I do know that the powers and authorities in society needs to be challenged, continually. Rebel Kjell is here to help, god bless his rebel soul.

A Lifetime Of Resistance By Far comes on vinyl of course, in a nice deep purple color, and can be ordered from the Oslo record store Tiger, they also ship internationally.

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