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Mando Diao - Bring 'Em In (Cover Artwork)

Mando Diao

Mando Diao: Bring 'Em InBring 'Em In (2003)
EMI Group

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:


Contributed by: maverickScott
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Odds are, none of you have ever heard of Mando Diao. They are from Sweden. They, at first glance, would probably be written off as another garage rock band. So, this is a rather loaded statement, but I fully believe Mando Diao is the mod-rock version of Swedish hardcore legends Refused. This is .
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Odds are, none of you have ever heard of Mando Diao. They are from Sweden. They, at first glance, would probably be written off as another garage rock band. So, this is a rather loaded statement, but I fully believe Mando Diao is the mod-rock version of Swedish hardcore legends Refused. This is how important I feel their music is.

While this album would be [poorly] classified as "garage rock" by most people if they gave it a cursory listen, there is so much more going on here. Calling this album "garage rock" would be like calling The Shape Of Punk To Come "hardcore." This is a record that while positioned strongly in one genre [in this case, mod rock along the lines of the Who, the Kinks, the Beatles, et al], doesn't hesitate to explore it's boundaries, and bend them in appropriate spots. Influences of classic R&B, blues, 50's pop balladry, and even funk show up all over the album and never weigh a single song down; instead they accentuate the songs to the point where each one is memorable.

While there's a lot of musical talent in this quintet, Mando Diao's real asset is their dual vocalists. Both have distinctive voices, with Gustaf sounding a bit like Julian Casablancas of the Strokes, and Bjorn having a much more soulful, robust voice. Each takes the lead for exactly half of the album's songs, and the way the disc is sequenced, you never hear one man's voice for too long. It's an easy way to keep a listener's ears glued to the speakers, and it works.

Mando Diao is better than pretty much every current band I can think of to compare them too. While the Hives have the attitude, Mando Diao has the attitude and varied musical ability. While the Strokes are excellent songwriters, Mando Diao can write amazing songs and don't have to purposely record their album lo-fi so critics will like it. Hell, even Mando Diao knows they're good. To quote their press release:

"Nothing can stop us. We honestly believe our record is better than anything by the Who, or the Kinks, or the Small Faces. It may even be better than many of the Stones' or Beatles' records. We're competing with the biggest bands in this world... So bring 'em in. We'll take 'em down."
Now as a critic, there is nothing more I wanted to do than completely tear this band a new asshole after reading that. But the album is so damn good that they honestly might be right. That scares me, in a good way.

This album will be, at least for me, the bar that any mod/garage band will need to try and pass if they want my praise. I can't highlight songs because they're all equally good. A virtually spotless debut, and worth your hard-earned money.

Stream the entire album here

 

 
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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
PsychoOS231 (February 25, 2005)

Mando Diao can write amazing songs and don't have to purposely record their album lo-fi so critics will like it

Haha so fucking true

Anonymous (August 18, 2004)

You either love it or hate it. Fortunately, most people love it. Very diverse, creative and original. Don't believe me, go listen. Great band, great album, all-around fantastic.

Anonymous (August 18, 2004)

I heard the single "Sheepdog" whlie in France, and I searched everywhere for the album. Now back home in Canada, I'm trying to get everyone to listen to it. This band deserves so much credit. They're not garage rock at all, they're totally original and incredibly talented. My new favourite band!

Anonymous (August 18, 2004)

Love Love Love Mando Diao. Best album of the year, no competition. Go have a listen...

Anonymous (August 16, 2004)

This album is the best album of 2003 and 2004 It way better than the B.S. they play on MTV

Anonymous (July 24, 2004)

Mando Diao is one of the best bands I've heard in a long time. Their music is totally original and catchy. I loved the album and it is definately not garage-rock. It has everything from slow ballads to upbeat, bluesy songs. Go listen to a couple of their songs and you'll love them too.

Anonymous (February 20, 2004)

For all you jerk-off's information, i think this band kicks @$$!!!! they rock and i think you're all freaking mad!

Anonymous (January 1, 2004)

"Nothing can stop us. We honestly believe our record is better than anything by the Who, or the Kinks, or the Small Faces. It may even be better than many of the Stones' or Beatles' records. We're competing with the biggest bands in this world... So bring 'em in. We'll take 'em down."

= This band is a bunch of arrogant cunts.

-BSD

Anonymous (October 29, 2003)

This band sucks AAAAAAAAAAASSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!

Anonymous (October 29, 2003)

... Gods with a big letter G of course, and because not becouse, but I think that you understood me anyway.
Love!

Anonymous (October 29, 2003)

This one of the worst things that ever happened to Swedish music. The music is awfull and the songs are pure crap. I mean, if this excuse for a "garage band" tries to make and promote themselves to gods, you people out there dont have to support them in doing that. Becouse trust me, they are no gods and nothing of their recording material was never, is not and never will be better than the worst shit that The Beatles, Stones or The Who ever made.
People get real!

Anonymous (September 8, 2003)

Its not garagerock at all, youve got it right Scott.If you listen to the b.sides of their singles you can hear that they are really writing beatiful ballads as well. They have got high scores in their Swedish reviews too, both live and the record. Youre opinion is nothing to be surprised about. Youre simply right.

Anonymous (September 8, 2003)

They are really great, but their brothers band Sugarplum fairy.nu are even greater. Check yourself at www.sugarplumfairy.nu.

Anonymous (September 8, 2003)

There is so much envy in Sweden, its just not allowed to succeed. This album is great and Scott is right. But once Gustaf, one of the singers said: Eithery you love us or you hate us, and he was wright. But for every hater ther are 1000 lovers. I am one of them.

Anonymous (September 2, 2003)

ohhh SAMSONITE! i was way off

-same guy as last post

p.s. there is nothing more satisfying than setting up and knocking down your own jokes

Anonymous (September 2, 2003)

scott stole haterade from that referee turned manager whose name escapes me at the moment
teddy something

501 (August 31, 2003)

you compaired them to refused...
REFUSED. Dennis would shit his pants if he read this.

Anonymous (August 31, 2003)

Oh my god... Are these guys trying to trick us into thinking theyre art students or something?... What a bunch of pussies. Posted-by: some new jersey emo fag

Anonymous (August 30, 2003)

The songs sound cool and all... But I am so damn sick of all this anti-progressive rock music. It's time to get fucking crazy with music and catch up to the insanity which has been going on in the art world in the past 30 years.

Anonymous (August 30, 2003)

seriously, fuck this band, if you thought a mike ness was a dick....

...go see this band.

Anonymous (August 30, 2003)

Haterade? hahahaha.

Anonymous (August 30, 2003)

"Wouldn't the 'mod rock' version of the Refused be the (International) Noise Conspiracy?"

(I)NC are definitely not mod rock.

Anonymous (August 30, 2003)

Don't believe the internet hype that every website owner and their mothers are creating about this album.

Its crap. It sounds like every other album by any of the billions of garage bands out there. Plus the recording is extremely toned down to sound like these guys are stuck in the fucking 60's. They obviously had the technology to make the album sound better, quality wise, but they chose to make it sound like a beatles album because they don't have a mind of their own.

If the Beatles came around as a band today instead, you'd better fucking believe they'd have used current recording technology to make their albums sound as good as they possibly could.

Going for a "feel" is ok. But this isn't a recorded "feel." The quality is actually really bad, on purpose...

Seen the videos either? These guys even have the fucking look down...

Whatever happened to creativity?!

Anonymous (August 30, 2003)

why are so many bands playing this bullshit now? this is about the 40th band like this ive heard in the past month.

Anonymous (August 30, 2003)

Mindless pointless extremely redundant drivel.

Get some reviewers that listen to music.

This shit needs to be burned, now.

maverick (August 30, 2003)

Man, someone's giving out free samples of Haterade over in Stockholm...

Chill out, duders. I think it's a really good, really diverse, and really unique album. I think more people would benefit from hearing a disc as perfected as this.

-Scott

Anonymous (August 30, 2003)

This band is horrible... Absolutely.

I've never wanted to puke listening to music till now.

Scott... why!?!

Anonymous (August 30, 2003)

haha, i bet these 2 guys are swedish too.

yeah reeko, we should tell scott to listen to p3 because odds are that he'll find 120 great bands in a few hours..

I never thought about this site ever mentioning this band.

it's just generic shit over here, everyone sounds like this, actually, if you compare genres, this band is like a 2:nd rate silverstein (not sounding like it, just the generic-factor)

but the lyrics are awesome..
yeah yeah yeah...YEAH YEAH YEAH

Anonymous (August 30, 2003)

man Scott Mando Diao suck ass... I always thought that you write good reviews but after this... I dont think Ill be able to trust your judgement anymore

reeko (August 30, 2003)

I thought at least punknews.org would be Mando Diao free but obviously not. It's now official, they're everywhere. So, what's the next Swedish band to review here? A-Teens?

reeko (August 30, 2003)

I thought at least punknews.org would be Mando Diao free but obviously not. It's now official, they're everywhere. So, what's the next Swedish band to review here? A-Teens?

Anonymous (August 29, 2003)

and yeah, they used to have a keyboard player too, he was awesome, but since they are such a big gang of rockstars they kicked him out.

i saw a set on tv once where the keyboardist did a 5 minute solo and it sounded more wacky than 4:th wave ska.

Anonymous (August 29, 2003)

oh. i calmed down now and actually read the review.

i'm not one to put down other peoples taste (after all, i like sum 41), so i won't do it.

But, seriously these dudes are very annoying, they are on every tv show possible and act like they are the biggest rockstars in the world, I can't even begin to describe it, they shit on so many bands that actually are 100 times better than themselves.

And another thing, why do you think every band in this country plays garage rock?

Seriously, that has never been, actually the last 10 years 80% of the swedish bands has sounded like this or close.

And a friend of mine kept telling me how wild & crazy these guys was live and I actually payed 20$ (lower than normal ticketprice here for a shitty show) to see them and it would've been more fun to watch a cd player on stage.

You find this original, I don't, come live here and you will understand.

/melvyl.

Anonymous (August 29, 2003)

WTF WTF WTF

FUCK SHTI!!!!!!21
THIS IS THE LAST CD I EVER THOUGHT WAS GOING TO GET REVIEWED HERE

CONGRATS TO ALL YOU PEOPLE WHO LIKE THEM, YOU'RE ALL WEINERHATS.

/MELVYL. FUCK YOU.'

wow, i was angry. no seriously, what is this release doing here? PLEASE POST MORE REVIEWS SO THIS WILL DISSAPEAR FROM THE REVIEW LIST.

if you like this, you should move to Sweden because everything and their shoes sounds like this.

Anonymous (August 29, 2003)

Wouldn't the 'mod rock' version of the Refused be the (International) Noise Conspiracy?

...evildeadalive

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