Track By Track
Nickelback released their ninth studio album, Feed The Machine, this year. One of my favourite “modern” rock bands along Foo Fighters and blink-182, Nickelback aren’t known for being a well-loved band by people the internet but most of the time, I think it’s just bandwagon jumping.
I definitely think that this is Nickelback’s strongest album since All The Right Reasons. There is not a single weak track on that album in my opinion, from punchy rockers like “Feed The Machine” and “The Betrayal Part III” to “power” ballads such as “Song On Fire” and “Home”. Every track on this album has a different vibe.
Feed The Machine
The title and opening track, Feed The Machine gets the album off to buzzing start, Kroeger and Peake’s driving riffs along with Adair’s drumming already set the bar high, along with Chad’s powerful and passionate vocals during the chorus, far from lacklustre, I actually think the lyrics have something to do with Trump’s election. Could be wrong though. But a very strong opener, Nickelback tends to the first tracks write with “Follow You Home” and “This Means War” being other examples.
Coin For The Ferryman
An unusual title, Coin For The Ferryman is another heavy track, one of Nickelback’s best songs I would see for me, the “3…2…1” bit is awesome as well as the punchy guitar riffs. One of Nickelback’s “metal” songs along with “Side of a Bullet” and “This Means War”, it’s a great follow-up to the track to “Feed The Machine.”
Song On Fire
The first ballad of the album, Song on Fire actually got played in a shop in Germany when I was visiting Berlin. Shows they don’t just commercial pop on occasion! Song of Fire is very powerful with awesome harmonies and a brilliant chorus line. Not my favourite ballad on the album but a good song nonetheless!
Must Be Nice
One of my favourite songs on the album, it starts with an indie-esque riff, idk, it just kinda reminds me of Arctic Monkeys a little bit, but a completely different genre. I’m glad that Nickelback don’t just release their ballads as singles as “Must Be Nice” is a real hit, another aggressive song, songs like that have to have hot-blooded vocals and Chad Kroeger doesn’t disappoint.
After The Rain
Another ballad, “After The Rain” has a moral message through the lyrics, that sometimes although we don’t want to wait, life takes patience, you can’t have everything right away. A good message that, has a vibe similar to “Far Away” but a completely different theme. Still not my favourite ballad from Feed The Machine though.
For The River
We now go back to the heavier songs with “For The River”, it’s almost like each song has a mood whiplash after track 2, slow, fast, slow, fast. The song features an excellent guitar solo from Extreme’s Nuno Bettencourt. The pre-chorus is pretty cool with Chad Kroeger going into his lower register. Daniel Adair’s drumming is pretty sick too.
You know when I said Song On Fire and After The Rain weren’t my favourite ballads? Well, the reason why is because Home is. This song I feel is very unique, Nickelback have always been accused of having the same style for ballads but “Home” overpowers that. Chad Kroeger’s vocals are like nothing else in this song, you feel the pain in his voice and also Mike Kroeger’s bass in the second verse is one of his highlights on the album. Out of all eleven songs, “Home” is probably my favourite.
The Betrayal – Act III
I think it’s pretty cool that this song opens with a Spanish-style acoustic intro from either Chad or Ryan (idk who plays lead, sorry), but then goes into a punchy bass riff from Mike, Chad’s aggressive vocals/harmonies definitely have a “betrayal”. Guitars, bass, drums and vocals are all on top form on this song, a strong rival to “Home” for Feed The Machine’s best song.
Another song with a message, “Silent Majority” delivers the message of “act fast or deal with it the hard way.” Chad’s vocals are once again on the top of their game. Who said he was a bad singer? The vocals make me buy it completely, it gives you so many “what if?” scenarios. Might not be as talked about as some of the other songs on the album but another gem.
Every Time We’re Together
Now, I know this song is very similar to “Photograph” but I still enjoy it nonetheless. Gives you a sense of childhood nostalgia, the vocal melodies in the chorus are pretty magical just like “Home”. Other than that, not much else I can say.
The Betrayal Part – Act I
This track must be a first for Nickelback, having a acoustic instrumental track at the end of their album, All The Right Reasons didn’t have that, neither did Silver Side Up. In this case, Nickelback can’t be accused of playing the same music all the time here. Only one thing though, where’s The Betrayal Act – Act II?! Ask Chad and the guys then, I guess.
I don’t really see why Nickelback are so hated, this album in my opinion is one of their strongest. Every song has a different feel. Nickelback can’t be accused of sounding the same here as I feel they’ve really stepped up their game. While many similar bands have followed the pop direction, I can’t say that for Nickelback though, it isn’t them with the driving riffs, the loud drums and of course, Chad Kroeger’s aggressive vocals. One of the best albums from 2017 in my opinion so far.