Dec 2013 24

Cat Rapes Dog - Life Was SweetCat Rapes Dog
Category: Alternative / Electro / Punk
Album: Life Was Sweet
Stars: 3.5
Blurb: With enough punk energy and attitude to put to shame any scene newcomers, these Swedish rabble rousers return after a 14 year hiatus with an expected aplomb.


Since the band’s genesis in 1984, the Swedish Cat Rapes Dog has covered a lot of ground. While periods of temporary hiatus disrupted its output, the band continued to regularly shift its musical paradigm from EBM to metal, but always retained the signature current of spontaneous, invigorating punk energy. Life Was Sweet not only marks the return of the quartet, but also a new and subtly different chapter in the act’s discography.

Gone are the heavy aggressive passages that filled the tracks committed by the band in the mid ‘90s. One would have to use the word “mature” with some restraint, though, as the unpredictable spirit of the music is still accounted for. In fact, Life Was Sweet can be easily described as an unrestrained, subversive ride through the soundscape of guitar heavy electro/rock, a ride that finds Cat Rapes Dog in a moment of creative clarity and confidence. The opening “God Hates Christians” reveals the demented zest behind the lyrical and musical layers of the album on which acoustic instruments intertwine manically with drum machines and the deep, reverberating bass. The verbal agitation is delivered through a duet of masculine and feminine voices that shout out religious blasphemies while the track intensifies, growing crazier and crazier until the lutes provide a fitting, unexpected closure. The album continues in a similar vein with “Dead Coming Back” and “Crystal Ball” both building from the same living, progressive tissue. Elsewhere on the album, Cat Rapes Dog toys with the retro groove of glittering dance floors and discotheques. “Through a Glass Darkly” ditches the weight of the rock stylization for a memorably irresistible rhythm of pulsating synths. The anarchic hymn “Vote!” is even more obviously inspired by the collages of electro-pop templates of the ‘80s, equally brilliantly incorporated into “River of Pain” and “Head Around” and contrasted on the gritty, noisy “A Thousand Years” and “Falling Apart.”

The entire record is fairly short, especially for a full-length album that is supposed to be a comeback for a group that hasn’t released a record since 1999. Still, while the listeners are not treated to an abundance of new material, the track list is jam packed with enough attitude and energy to provide a brief but satisfying encounter with Sweden’s premium punk export. Not one note on Life Was Sweet rings untrue and anyone in the market for a dosage of a raw electro/rock should be satisfied with Cat Rapes Dog’s return.
Track list:

  1. God Hates Christians
  2. Dead Coming Back
  3. Through a Glass Darkly
  4. Falling Apart
  5. Vote!
  6. River of Pain
  7. Crystal Ball
  8. Head Around
  9. A Thousand Years

Cat Rapes Dog Website
Cat Rapes Dog MySpace
Cat Rapes Dog Facebook
Artoffact Records Website
Artoffact Records Facebook
Artoffact Records MySpace
Artoffact Records Twitter
Purchase at:
Amazon CD
Amazon MP3
Amazon Vinyl
Damian Glowinkowski (DamienG)

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