Much like the demons and monsters inhabiting our overactive imaginations, the marriage of horror and rock ’n’ roll is one that simply will not die, with these two eternal forces united in blood against adversity, common sense and the fickle mistress of fashion. What’s more, looming through the mist from the sleepy Swedish town of Bromölla, The Dahmers – named, naturally, after one Jeffrey – have carried out one of the most pulse-racing rejuvenations of this unholy alliance in memory either living or undead. Savage, wild and thoroughly compulsive, their second album ‘In The Dead Of Night’ is a platter o’ splatter ready to take on the world.
Staying true to the adage that talent borrows while genius steals, the band have created a mighty conflagration of mayhem from the amp-cranked clangour of ’60s garage rock, the high-octane energy of punk and even the disarmingly catchy melody of ’70s glam rock- the result is a mutant whole that effortlessly escapes the trap of overly studious retro pastiche, commandeering razor-sharp song writing nous and almighty chutzpah to revelatory ends. Influential touchstones and tombstones may be manifest on ‘In The Dead Of Night – their second album following hot on the heels of their 2014 debut ‘Demons – from the bawdy ramalama of The Hellacopters to the devilish glint of Misfits, and from the melodically infectious powerpop of Redd Kross to the hard-assed swagger of The Hookers. Yet The Dahmers transcend all these component parts in the creation of a sound possessed of a joie-de-vivre paradoxical for ones so death-obsessed.
Spinal Tap hit on a universal truth when they invoked the ‘fine line between stupid and clever’. a trajectory that a great deal of rock ‘n’ roll will walk along perilously from now til the earth is the smouldering husk of an apocalyptic B-movie. This fine line is The Dahmers’ natural habitat, and ‘In The Dead Of Night’ is both the most idiot savant record of the terrifying present and the most high-IQ work of gloriously dunderheaded riff magic that the average freak is likely to stumble across in the early days of this benighted year. Join ‘em on their pathway to oblivion and conquest.