‘Indefinite hiatus’ is the new ‘musical differences’, and it was that phrase that Backyard Babies used for their semi-split back in 2009. But these are not the kind of people to take the nearest job in a call centre, so is anyone that surprised that Nicke Borg and co are back?
It’s still welcome, though, and the break has had the desired re-energising effect judging by the opening salvoes of Four By Four. There’s something reassuring about the arrogance of I’m On My Way To Save Your Rock’n’roll, and the hooks that wrestle each other for your attention on Th1rt3en Or Nothing and White Light District suggest it’s not just empty boasting.
There are just nine songs on this release (although what’s the betting more will show up on a deluxe reissue?) notching up just 37 minutes in total, but either side of Bloody Tears’s piano-laced power ballad, it’s itchy-footed, upbeat rabble rousers all the way, with the comfortingly familiar themes of rebel lifestyle (Piracy, Wasted Years) and joyous slackery (Never Finish Anything) to the fore once more. Not so much a hiatus as a holiday, then.