The Hives - The Black and White Album Album Review
The Black and White Album
A cocky Swedish punk garage rock band, The Hives enjoyed massive success with their hit single Hate To Say I Told You So from their 'greatest hits' collection Your New Favourite Band - a ferociously hook-laden slice of attitude. Known for wearing only black and white, this fourth full-length album's title perhaps also conveys the attempt to provide a counterpoint to the usual snotty Jet sound with a song like A Stroll Through Hive Manor - all cheesy 60s organs. A band that's more akin to sweaty punkmeisters like The Mooney Suzuki, Hoodoo Gurus or Beasts of Bourbon, The Hives here have produced a stunning follow-up to 2004's Tyrannosaurus Hives.
The tongues are firmly in cheek, the guitar riffage cranked to 11, and there's not a trace of subtlety anywhere. Unfortunately, there is a misstep or two - eight track, T.H.E.H.I.V.E.S, is produced by Pharrell Williams (although he didn't mess up Well All Right!), and Giddy Up! The best two tracks bookend the album - single Tick Tick Boom (which continues the Hate To Say theme), and Fall Is Just Something Grown-ups Invented are fantastic. The Hives are certainly one-trick ponies, but the trick is pretty special.