Hypnic Jerk - The Country Dark (Humu Records)
Too much Lux is never enough for some people and Finnish band The Country Dark are clearly lifetime members of the Interior Fan Club. This is Album Number Three for the five-piece from Somewhere Near The Arctic Circle (where the fuck is Kuopio anyway?) and just like the output of The Cramps, it’s laced with humour dark enough to eclipse the sun during the depths of a Scandinavian winter.
The Country Dark play rockabilly-trash rock with lashings of twang. Appearances count for something when you mine that groove and from the cover picture of a hand with a dismembered pinkie to song titles like “Useless (Like Tits On A Boar)” and “Two Dicks In One Hole” (it’s a detective story, you porn fiend) it’s evident what you’re getting.
There’s a strong country undercurrent in these songs that lifts The Country Dark out of the swamp and drops them into the hog pen where they’re free to wallow around in the shit. “Fucked Up (In So Many Ways)” is a case in point: shiny guitar licks mix it with a sombre, Tex Perkins-like vocal delivery that recalls the Beasts of Bourbon’s first album.
If the aforementioned hoedown “Two Dicks…” doesn’t raise a smile then you’re probably a stiff.
This is great driving music..if you’re a sex offender cruising a dark and deserted highway in a hearse and looking for carnal kicks. The Country Dark are like The Flamin’ Sideburns with prior convictions.
Here's how it works: The Country Dark get in, do the job and get the fuck out. Ten songs and nine of them are originals. There’s a cover of “Farmer John” that replaces the plod of the original with a fevered psychosis and adds cool female backing vocals.
It's not a game-changer but The Country Dark play a good game, all the same.