Mando Diao

The Swedish cats in Mando Diao have spent a long time with their British Invasion albums. On Bring 'Em In, their debut salvo, their Beatles-meets-Yardbirds take on Brit pop combined an uncanny gift for melody with a fuzzed-out twin guitar attack. This time, the influences are more diverse, but the hooks and high energy remain. The aptly named "Down in the Past" is a bluesy, quasi-Motown rave-up with a snarling vocal from Gustaf Norn that echoes the squall of the young Eric Burdon in the Animals. "Annie's Angle" calls to mind Ian Hunter fronting -- you guessed it -- the Fab Four. "If I Leave You" has hints of the Dave Clark Five, but it swings harder and drops a hint of ska into the guitar rhythms. Mando Diao makes the old cliché "Beatles or Stones?" irrelevant, with the melodic smarts of the former and the cocky attitude of the latter in full effect.


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