Three decades after Switzerland’s Krokus broke big worldwide with its 1983 epic, “Headhunter”, that classic line-up returns with the band’s 17th album, “Dirty Dynamite”. After a stunning return in 2010 with “Hoodoo”, vocalist Marc Storace, bassist and producer Chris von Rohr, and guitarists Fernando von Arb and Mark Kohler have proven that the there’s still plenty of boogie in their blood.
Drummer Freddy Steady stepped aside for the new record, but longtime guitarist Mandy Meyer has returned to the fold. Von Rohr has once again handled production duties, and the band sounds tighter than ever. The album will be released February 5 on The End Records.
From the opening growl of “Hallelujah Rock’n’Roll”, Krokus is back to its bad boy riff and roll roots. A sound that once pegged the band as the Swiss AC/DC. A catchy rolling guitar line struts on by big harmony vocals. It’s good old down and dirty rock and roll.
The toe-tapping groove continues on with “Go Baby Go” before the tempo drops into the bluesy romp of, “Rattlesnake Rumble”.
The album’s title track and first single, “Dirty Dynamite” has that boogie woogie strut in full swing, complete with tack piano.
As Krokus so often does, they put their own spin on a rock and roll classic. This time they offer up a gritty and emotive take on The Beatles‘ “Help”. This is a gratifying rendition that breathes new life into the vintage hit.
More great swagger and roll follows on cuts like “Yellow Mary”, “Better Than Sex”, “Live Ma Life” and more.
The guys close it all out with the Southern-tinged “Hardrocking Man”, complete with slide guitar. Like so many other tracks on “Dirty Dynamite” this song makes you want to get on your bad motor scooter and ride: Hit the open road and let the wind blow your hair back!
The entire album has that comfortable, beer back, smoky club vibe that makes one feel good with every snare snap, bass rumble and riotous riff. There’s nothing new here, and that’s what makes it so enjoyable. “Dirty Dynamite” is everything we love about hard partying rock and roll boogie and blues.
Marc Storace sounds as powerful as ever and Krokus has delivered an album as solid as anything else they’ve done previously. For those who long for Bon Scott era AC/DC, pick this up. You won’t be sorry.
Subscribe to this column to stay up to date on all things rock and roll.
Music is the universal language: Speak it loudly!
Rustyn Rose is a veteran music journalist who owns and operates Metalholic Magazine and Metalholic Radio.