Rotten Mind – Rat City Dog Boy (2020)

FrontCover1Rotten Mind (from Upsalla/Sweden), founded in 2014; before they played in different groups like Agent Attitude, Damaged Head, Real Tears, Impo & the tents) is a typical punk band, restless youth with a background in the hardcore punk band Agent Attitude. The band is on an everlasting search away from their everyday boredom, continue living fast and in chaos to keep those voices out of the head.

Combining elements of 77’punk, post-punk and garage rock, Swedish indie- force Rotten Mind are back with their fourth full length album. With Rat City Dog Boy, Rotten Mind returns to their musical roots while embracing new influences to create an album that sounds both fresh and vintage, making the band appealing to old-school punkers as well as newfound lovers of the scene. Since the release of their critically acclaimed debut “I’m Alone Even With You”, Rotten Mind has played shows in Australia, Germany, France, Sweden, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, UK, USA, Spain and Czech Republic, and has been recognized in music magazines such as NME, Vice, Gaffa, and Hymn.

For fans of: The Vibrators, Christian Death and T.S.O.L or modern bands as Crusades, Iceage, Radioactivty, Vicious, High Tension Wires or Metz. (

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ROTTEN MIND are one of the more impressive punk acts to come out of Sweden in the last decade. In a country that already boasts a plethora of excellent punk acts, ROTTEN MIND have made a solid reputation for blending classic punk with elements of post-punk and new wave, making for a heady mix of great music that has served them well over the course of their first three full lengths. Now, with the release of their fourth album, Rat City Dog Boy, the band are not only embracing their classic sound, but also throwing a variety of new influences into the mix, resulting in an eclectic and extremely catchy album that it’s incredibly hard not to love.

City Rats starts this album with an energetic piece of solid Punk; it proves to be a brief, yet brilliant, way for ROTTEN MIND to kick the album off. Burn for You follows in much the same vein, with catchy guitars and memorable, singalong vocals creating a speed-driven classic punk sound tinged with some indie flourishes that work well together and give this song a great sound throughout. Whereas the previous two songs were razor sharp and intense from start to finish, Nothing Left to Give proves to be a much more mid-tempo affair with brooding leads, authoritative drumming and a more measured approach, which proves to be a refreshing change of pace.

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Beat of the Street makes use of more adventurous and prominent lead guitar melodies and a fast, razor sharp sound, combining the pace that defined the opening tracks with the expansive sound of its predecessor, making for an epic yet rabid piece of music. I’ve Got No Time, despite running for less than two minutes, stands out significantly, blending tight punk rhythms with a brooding, hard rock feel that not only stands out in all the right ways, but gives this album a more diverse sound. You’ll Never See Me Again is anthemic with some solid Indie elements and plenty of energetic drumming, which gives this song a really lively and invigorating feel right off the bat.

Tame Me is a brief yet brilliant blast of bombastic punk with some thunderous guitars and driving vocals. despite it’s length, it certainly leaves its mark on the album. Fyrisån blends great aspects of New Wave with a tight, rock edge. The more adventurous, melody driven leads really benefit the song, carrying the music throughout and making for a brooding and haunting change of pace. Negative Space takes the music back down a faster route, with jangling guitar hooks and authoritative drumming combining to make a lighter sound that still manages to pack a significant punch. The vocals really begin to come into their own, and the listener gets treated to some of the more varied vocal performances on the record, another element that helps to elevate this track and make it stand out.

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Not One of You follows in much the same vein as Tame Me. A solid rhythmic undercurrent provides plenty of musical weight to the mix, with the leads taking on a denser and more doom-laden sound as well. It’s a great, climactic exclamation point on this album that leads into the albums final song, And Now It’s All Gone, perfectly. This final offering is a far cry from the rest of the music on the album, stripping back most of the distortion in favour of a subdued vocal and acoustic guitars, which are the sole building blocks of this particular song. It may be a fairly minimal affair, and with a much more primitive sound than all the other tracks on here, but it acts as a nice pallet cleanser that brings the album to a close on a surprising, yet still interesting, note.

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Rat City Dog Boy is an excellent album that blends a variety of musical elements together while making sure that none of the music ends up being stale. It’s clear that ROTTEN MIND are starting to shift away from the more classic punk orientated sound which defined their first few records with the music becoming far more eclectic and adventurous, whilst still maintaining that ethereal production quality that makes their music so impressive and memorable. (by Danny Sanderson)

Punk Rock ist alive and well … Listen to this album and you´ll know what I mean

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Personnel:
Jakob Arvidsson (guitar, vocals)
Jakob Blom (bass)
Victor Nordin (drums)
Johan Sverredal (guitar)

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Tracklist:
01. City Rats 2.40
02. Burn For You 1.59
03. Nothing Left To Give 3.35
04. Beat Of The Street 3.21
05. I’ve Got No Time 1.56
06. You’ll Never See Me Again 2.37
07. Tame Me 2.02
08. Fyrisån 3.19
09. This Is My Negative Space 2.29
10. Not One Of You 4.07
11. And Now It’s All Gone 2.12

All songs written by Jakob Arvidsson – Jakob Blom – Victor Nordin – Johan Sverredal

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