For all I know Austrian rockers Mädhouse must be keen grave diggers by day – because at night their skill in exhuming the corpses of various eighties metal bands is absolutely unrivalled…

In the context of a magazine like Sentinel Daily this needn’t be an obstruction to adulation, and it has to be said that if you were around in the late eighties and are still listening to melodic metal in 2022 then there’s a fine old time awaiting your ears on D’N’D. The first two tracks – the title track and Hard Luck – set things up nicely, but by the time the lads get to track four – the absolutely immense Passionkiller – they are nigh on unstoppable.

Taking the modern heaviness of a band like Sweden’s Sister, sandblasting the rough edges and then throwing it in a pot with names like Kix, Cinderella and Skid Row, Mädhouse know a winning gang vocal when they hear one, and one the delirious, dervishlike rocker This Is Horrorwood they throw about thirty of them at the listener with precious little care for the consequences. It’s genuinely exciting stuff – if Alice Cooper had been cryogenically sealed into a recording studio in 1989 and only released now the result would sound pretty much exactly like this – infectious in all the good ways that word might imply and heading straight to this reviewer’s best of ’22 lists already.

In The Doghouse is downright sleaze incarnate, sassy, swingin’ and aimed straight at the groin, propelled forwards by some loose-limbed wizardry from Casey Jean Eiszenman behind the kit and the proud owner of some scintillating guitar courtesy of Mikky Stixx and Thommy Black. And then there’s the sandpapered vocal charm of Tommy Lovelace

Lovelace has the perfect throat for this kind of music, with a range that can handle the tender (if bombastic) ballad You And I Against The World just as well as the balls out rock of any of the tunes already mentioned. He’s got it all,  and he doesn’t care who knows – swagger in spades, in fact…

In real terms if you ain’t already a fan of this type of music there’s nothing here to change your mind; but, as already noted – cowboy booted dustcoat devotees the world over are going to lap up every drop that’s put in front of them, because this is very much the real deal!

Down ‘N’ Dirty releases on July 29th.