Captain Murphy: Human Cannonball
Captain Murphy - Human Cannonball - [Wild Kingdom Records]


Swedish hard rock is a mainstay of that country's musical ethos, and several of their bands have done well outside of the borders of Europe as well, with such as Hellacopters and Backyard Babies being good examples.

The thing with this band is, they seem to be held captive by the harmonies and some of the psychedelic elements of the 60's, something that works in certain points, but sounds contrived and a bit over-soft in other places.

The album starts interestingly enough, with "Human Cannonball", a sleazy, swaggering number which could've been born in the 70's, and the band's strengths are apparent – solid musicianship and a really good vocalist that sounds even better when he's part of the strong vocal harmonies these guys use quite often. It's in some of the tracks following the tracks that I felt a bit more aggression and a bit less swagger would've done more good for them.

Tracks such as "Sioux" bring in some much added strength to the equation, but it still feels too little, too late; most of the tracks are closer to 70's rock, but they lack a certain ballsiness that should have been infused too.

All-in-all, it's a worthy addition to the Swedish hard rock pantheon, though not its best. A bit more distortion, some heavier songs, and this can be much better.

Alon Miasnikov

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