Record Reviews

Album review: Sator “Return of the Barbie-Q-Killers”

Swedish punk rockers Sator are back with a follow-up to their 1994 covers album.

Sator is a Swedish garage-y punk-rock institution. Founded more than 40 years ago, the band went from underground favourites to mainstream success with their 1988 single “Oh Mama” (a cover of a pop hit by sisters Lili & Sussie). More than anything, they established themselves as a helluva live band. For many years they were the de facto house band at Hultsfredsfestivalen, a legendary rock festival in the Swedish countryside. Since then, they have just kept going with record releases, gigs and plenty of collaborations with other artists. Although they have a vast catalogue of terrific original material, well-chosen cover songs have always been a part of what Sator does. Now we get “Return of the Barbie-Q-Killers”, a massive CD release consisting of 24 cover songs (and the vinyl version comes with five bonus tracks). The new release is a follow-up to the band’s 1994 covers album “Barbie-Q-Killers” on which the band did their own versions of more or less obscure punk and garage rock songs. The new album is a tribute to bands such as Redd Kross, 999, The Waves, The Undertones, The Boys, The Last, Unnatural Axe, Långvård, White Flag, Screamers, Pointed Sticks, The Go-Go’s, The Young Lords and more. The album kicks off in style with the excellent “Get Out of My Way” (originally performed by British punk band Blitzkrieg Bop). The songs on this album are short and full of energy. Another Blitzkrieg Bop song, “Mental Case”, is an obvious highlight on this album as is the Zero Boys track “Vicious Circle”. There are for sure some real gems here, such as the fantastic “Out of Time”, a track by Los Angeles punksters Darby Crash Band. Devo’s “Shimmy Shake” gets Satorised and turns out very well. Four decades on and Sator is as good as ever. The band consists of Kent Norberg – vocals and guitar, Chips Kiesbye – vocals and guitar, Hans Gäfvert – keyboards, Heikki Kiviaho – bass and Mikael Solén – drums. It’s time to fire up the BBQ in the garden and put some beers on ice because this is your garden party soundtrack.

“Return of the Barbie-Q-Killers” will be out on 29th July via Wild Kingdom Records/Sound Pollution Distribution.