Review Summary: Nickelback's eighth full-length effort finds the group taking otherwise boring and familiar lyrics and bringing them to life. A pleasantly surprising album, the group finally manages to make something of the cards they're dealt.
We all know it's easy to hate on Nickelback. Granted, the criticism is warranted by familiar and formulaic lyrics about missing our significant other(s) and other themes that make their music so radio-friendly. On the other hand, the hate won't do much considering all of their albums have gold and platinum certifications to their merit, and the success of songs like "Photograph" and "How You Remind Me" will remain as a nice cushion for them to lay on.
"No Fixed Address", believe it or not, is more than just an accessible and listenable radio-rock full-length. On the contrary, a lot of these tracks have more depth than what one may predict at a glance. The album is far from a classic, but certainly is far from being an abomination. The album has its share of tracks where it feels like they're not even trying. Other tracks, however, they go all in and actually put their strengths to good use.
This Canadian post-grunge quartet opens up "No Fixed Address" with "Million Miles an Hour." A listenable enough song, frontman Chad Kroeger, who co-penned the track, does a solid job in having the hooks move the tempo along. Lead-off single "Edge of a Revolution" is, to my surprise, a standout track. A lyrical igniter for fans of bands like Three Days Grace and Flyleaf, Kroeger does a great job bringing these otherwise contrived lyrics to life. (We won't give up/We won't go away/Cause we're not about to live in this mass delusion/No we don't wanna hear another word you say) "Miss You", lyrically, is a song we've heard on rock radio a million times. Just the fact that we've heard songs like this goes without saying. Kroeger's vocals are solid and the EDM influence on this track and the album altogether, helps create something more cohesive than what the band typically brings to the table.
The group feels relaxed and not in the trying mood on tracks like "She Keeps Me Up" and "Satellite", but thankfully, for Nickelback, they finally produce an album with enough good tracks to keep the listener around for the whole go-around.
All in all, a solid effort, especially when compared to their last handful of projects. Nickelback proves they can be more than a radio-friendly, listenable rock band that everyone can hate it. They prove that they can back up their talk once in a while. If only they were more consistent on this matter.