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PUSHTWANGERS (Buy CDs by this artist)
Pushtwangers Mini-LP (Swed. Blackboard & Chalk) 1984
Don't Be Afraid (Swed. Amigo) 1985
Here We Go Again (Swed. Amigo) 1986 (Relativity) 1986
Strangler from Behind EP (Relativity) 1987

Except for an awkward pronunciation here and there, it's impossible to tell that the garage this clean-sounding sextet rocked out of is in Sweden. Although the Pushtwangers use enough horns and strings on their energetic second album to do some serious commercial damage in spots, the group's roots are strictly '60s and '70s punk, something which sneery singer Nome and guitarists Gustaf-Adolf Krantz and Mike Lundborg never forget. The contrasting blend of slick production, tight playing and raunchy instincts doesn't go for max stylee, but the effect is nifty nonetheless. (As is the racy front cover: the American edition has a peel-off day-glo sticker to satisfy the curious, while the Swedish original prudishly surprints an opaque black dress.)

Strangler from Behind is a four-song 12-inch with two fine new items, "Ticket to Paradise" (from Here We Go Again) and an all-acoustic version of the same LP's "Why Are You Treating Me So Bad?," with Ms. Lisen Elwin providing guest vocals.

[Ira Robbins]