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Friday, Nov. 4, 2005


(International) Noise Conspiracy: "Armed Love"

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After two acclaimed full-lengths, (International) Noise Conspiracy decided their politically driven anthems would have a better chance to "Smash It Up" by signing with Warner Bros. imprint American Recordings. Compromising their beliefs by working for a multinational conglomerate hasn't benefited the Swedish communists yet, as their new bosses shelved their third album for over a year. "Armed Love" plays out exactly like you'd expect a major-label debut to -- the production is slick and although the music is solid, it doesn't stray too far from the band's previous energetic, '60s garage rock and punk sounds.

This isn't to say that the dozen manifestos totally rehash (I)NC's earlier work. Organist Sara Almgren's abscence is filled by the addition of small doses of harmonicand saxophone to the mix, and the new instrumentation provides even more of an old school rock feel to the act's soulful, hand clapping rhythms.

While the group's political agendas remain at the forefront of their compositions, frontman Dennis Lyxzen's lyrical content has softened slightly -- the emphasis is placed more on examining emotions than calling folks to arms. But Longtime fans will be pleased that intelligent, yet highly danceable tracks such as "Like a Landslide" and "Communist Moon" stay true to the band's rebel rousing past.

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