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In Pure Spite

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Album Review

Veteran Swedish band the Maharajas offer a competent high-energy mix of garage rock with hard rock and punk rock influences on In Pure Spite. American 1960s garage rock does seem to be the primary influence, though these recordings, perhaps because of inevitable changes in technology, sound a little slicker than those Chocolate Watchband and Sonics vinyl relics of yore. Tunes sullenly sung with crunching elemental riffs, garnishing pile-driving guitar chords with garage organ. In other words, it's not much different either from '60s garage rock itself, or from the many other bands around the world in subsequent decades that have taken that genre as their launching point. Within those confines, it's well done, not tilting too much toward either the brutish simplistic side or the hurt adolescent posturing so common to the form. They have a decent knack for using minor chords and bittersweet melodic chord progressions, best heard on "On Hold (For Too Long)." And while "The Boy Inside"'s lift from the famous Larry Williams-by-way-of-Beatles rock & roll classic "Bad Boy" isn't striking, it isn't cringe-inducing, either.

In Pure Spite, The Maharajas
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