Nickelback are back with their 9th album Feed The Machine.
After the disappointing No Fixed Address album, fans will be hoping this returns Nickelback to their best. Unfortunately, despite an improvement this album falls short of Nickelback’s best. I am a fan of Nickelback and have not bought into this movement of hating them because it is cool, but for a life long fan I have to admit No Fixed Address and Feed The Machine are a big let down.
Musically the band have returned to heavy rock music with their standard songs that will be released as singles as they appeal more to the masses. However, the content of the songs has drastically changed. From great songs such as Animals, Figured You Out and Rockstar among others their songs are now very political. This is a marked departure from their earlier albums.
The choruses do not have the sing along sound and catchy beat that Nickelback at its best could deliver on most songs in an album. The heavier sound and darker content of the songs do have their merits and Feed The Machine is a great song to listen to when driving. But the core Nickelback fan base will be disappointed in the change in tone and content of their songs.
Ryan Peake and the rest of the band members are given chances to shine in some instrumental songs. This is something never done by the band previously and is great to see them demonstrate their underestimated talent. But this is fleeting and we quickly return to the political songs that dominate the album.
Overall I would give Feed The Machine 2.5 stars. For die hard Nickelback fans it is an improvement on their previous album but does not return the band to their best albums. For individuals who are not Nickelback fans there is some new themes and experiments in new genres. However, the stigma attached to listening to Nickelback will reduce there ability to reach a new audience.