Here we go. NICKELBACK, people. One of my favorite bands for 14 years now, they have never failed to inspire me, make me laugh, cry, and hoist many a shot and beer with my crew back in New York. I really don’t give a shit what your stupid and infantile reasons may be for hating them; I will love them till they give me a reason not to. All the Right Reasons and Dark Horse were out of the park home runs, and 2011’s Here and Now was more of a triple, at least to me. So where does that leave new album No Fixed Address? Somewhere between a triple and a homer. This marks the first disc for their new label Republic Records, and it’s got tons of stuff we know and love from them, but at the same time there are a few departures.
Opener “Million Miles An Hour” about one hell of a hallucinogenic-infused night is right up there with “This Means War” and “Something In Your Mouth” as classic NICKELBACK party-starters. This is immediately followed by the politically-charged “Edge of a Revolution” which I was a fan of from day one. “What Are You Waiting For” is a song that had to grow on me. The ladies will love it right from jump, while this will be just another reason for insecure guys to hate them even more. One of the biggest surprises was “She Keeps Me Up,” though. A funky, stick-in-your-head ditty, it may or may not feature AVRIL LAVIGNE on part of it. Honestly, not knowing is driving me bonkers! “Make Me Believe Again” is an okay song, but really not much more.
One thing NICKELBACK is great at though, is love songs, and “Satellite” is no exception. If this isn’t a single at some point then someone at Republic is dropping the ball big-time. It even managed to melt some of the ice around The Maestro’s heart, believe it or not. But the one that I have the most fun with is definitely “Get ‘Em Up”, a song about a bumbling bunch of wanna-be bank robbers who can’t get out of their own way. I’ve been singing it non-stop since I got the record and I hope they do it live on tour. A broad, sweeping feel encompasses “The Hammer’s Coming Down”, one of the more ambitious numbers from these guys, and one that’s very impressive in its arrangement. Another ballad shows up in “Miss You”, a song I was prepared not to like, but goddammit the chorus wormed its way into my brain!
Speaking of departures, “Got Me Runnin’ Round” starts out innocently enough, and we even get some horns (I hate horns), but then the most grievous sin is committed…a rapper. Flo Rida guest stars with some nonsensical crap that I would really like to just forget, honestly. This tune will be skipped on all future listens. If there was one throwaway, this would be it. Don’t worry though, because “Sister Sin” is a dirty, muddy, sexy, swamp boogie tune that closes things out in fine fashion. Once again NICKELBACK deliver a great album that longtime fans like me will really dig, ladies will love, and guys who say “bro” way too much will hate. No Fixed Address is out now worldwide, so pick up a copy and rock out!
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Get ‘Em Up”, “Satellite”, “Edge of a Revolution”, “Million Miles An Hour”, “She Keeps Me Up”, “The Hammer’s Coming Down”