Sharp Cut

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The song called "I Am a Demon and I Love Rock'n'Roll" should tell you everything you need to know about Sharp Cut, the debut album from Finland's Sweatmaster. But, for the sake of those devoid of imaginative functions, let's just say that the perpetually ebullient Scandinavian trio performs charged up, stripped down, electrified rock and roll right out of the Nuggets garage. Shouted vocals are delivered with soulful depravity, guitars are balanced on a tightrope between distortion and twang, drums snap and crackle and sound absolutely live, and bass does what a bass should do in these situations (stay out of the way). Think the Hives with songs and authenticity, and you'll get the gist of crotch-squeezing, booty-shaking, and, well, sweaty freak-outs like "Hold It!," the stutter-riff masterpiece "Precious," or the aforementioned "I Am a Demon...," which, incidentally, comes complete with a saucy trilling of the ‘R's. Even better, Sharp Cut's lively, perfectly condensed half-hour rarely lets up, wrapping up with additional winners like the effusive "Nothing to Do but Win," and the rowdy "Tonight." Simply put, as long as Sweatmaster's amps are giving off smoke and glowing orange, there'll be no snow too deep or winter too dark to keep Finland from rocking tonight.

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