Waaayyyy back in the mid eighties there was a Friday teatime metal show on Channel Four called ECT; Each week, three or four bands would play two or three songs each, filmed live in an old warehouse in front of a rabid audience of young headbangers – sometimes as many as fifty. Due to the exigencies of cost, most of the bands featured would be the sort of bands you’d see at London’s Marquee club on a cold Tuesday night, with the occasional addition of bigger names like Heavy Pettin or even Motörhead or Venom. Even my local heroes Persian Risk got a look in. It soon became cult pre-pub/rock club viewing.

I’m telling you all this because one week there came, unannounced, a Swedish band called Trash who were, to all intents and purposes, AC/DC in club form. And they were roundly laughed at down the pub that night; Fast forward nearly forty years and here we are with a new group of Swedes landing, unannounced, in my inbox. And guess what – they sound like AC/DC in club form!

However this time there’ll be no laughing, round or otherwise, because Vaxjo rockers Ström are rather good. Very good, in fact. And, though there are huge amounts of the ‘Dacca in their sound – vocalist Zdravko Zizmond has a howl on him that is a marvellous reproduction of Brian Johnson in his prime – there is an awful lot more to enjoy about this band than mere good-time plagiarism.

For instance Katapult and Ensam ar Stark – everything here is sung in Swedish, by the way – are both covered in Turbonegro‘s fingerprints, but to reduce this to just another game of spot-the-influence would be to do a massive disservice to what is, at it’s most base level, simply a thunderously good hard rock record. If you can stop worrying about the fact that you can’t sing along to Ungt blod (genom ett gammalt hjarta) for a second and just hone your air guitar skills instead, then the way lies open for an awful lot of fun with Ström.

Talking of air guitar, Calle Sjöquist and Johan Siljedahl will have your fingers twitching within nanoseconds of opener Tiden Sjunger crashing into your consciousness with it;s promise of low-slung six string excitement; they’ve got the perfect tone for this style of music, and their attention to detail throughout in the way they build their unashamedly retro sound is another reason why you’re going to love this album. This is an album that you feel as much as hear, and the way this pair works together has a lot to do with that.

Great stuff then – certainly if you like the idea of something that is simultaneously very familiar yet quite different. Give Ström a go today!

Ström releases on September 23rd.