Here And Now review by Nickelback

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  • Released: Nov 21, 2011
  • Sound: 7
  • Lyrics: 6
  • Overall Impression: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 6.7 Neat
  • Users' score: 5.4 (226 votes)
Nickelback: Here And Now
7

Sound — 7
Over the past several album releases, Nickelback has become the band that everyone loves to hate. Maybe that reputation is deserved for their songwriting which is almost a caricature of formulaic songwriting, or possibly even for the repetitive lyrical themes: sex, strippers and drinking. I'll admit that I was definitely in that category of music listeners who looked at Nickelback with almost disgust, but I've been trying to listen to "Here And Now" with fresh ears. Back in the day, with the release of their first albums, "The Curb" and "The State" you saw a different band, or maybe just the same band without the preconceived notions going in to listen to them.

Nickelback was formed in 1995 by three Kroegers (Chad, Mike and Brandon) and Ryan Peake. They released their first album almost immediately ("Curb"), almost immediately after the release of their debut EP, "Hesher" in 1996. Brandon Kroeger left the band in 1997, replaced by Mitch Guindon who was replaced by Ryan Vikedal in 1998. Ryan Vikedal was replaced by Daniel Adair in 2005 and is still with the band. The other three members have stayed with the band since being founded. Chad Kroeger began, reputedly in 2001, dissecting all hit songs on the radio to understand the formula for creating hit singles. Since then, Nickelback has had numerous hit singles and earned the enmity of a large portion of music listeners for what is seen as formulaic songwriting and insincerity.

"Here And Now" is mostly heavier rock, or alternative metal with a few softer songs. The album clocks in at just under 40 minutes with 11 tracks. The riffs are very catchy, and being completely honest, if these came on the radio I would not turn the station. If I was going out partying with friends then I might want the album as our traveling soundtrack. Formulaic? Yes. Repetitive lyrical themes? Yes. Rockin? Yes. The songs on "Here And Now" seem to be consistently good, musically. There are a few tracks that are a little bland, but for the most part the riffs are powerful. The soloing isn't extensive, but in good taste and adding to the overall song. At the end of the day, taken as a single work and not part of a collective of albums, "Here And Now" is a solid release and is a very fun album to listen to.

Lyrics — 6
I've kind of grown to look at Nickelback the same way I looked at Poison back in 1992 when I was first really getting into music. Poison made some good rockin' tracks, then made some tracks "for the ladies", so to speak. Nickelback does the same thing. Poison used blatant metaphors for sex and came off as just trying to chase hit songs. Nickelback does the same thing. I'm not sure if I can really blame Nickelback for this while their songs are formulaic and have the same themes recycled over and over, the members seems to have a good time playing and when it comes down to it that is what a band is all about (and maybe all a rock band should be about).

As a sample of the lyrical content, from the track "Midnight Queen" you have "she's my midnight queen/ I'm locked and loaded and ready to go/ she's gonna lick my pistol clean/ she's got a hold of me and she ain't lettin' go". And then you have lyrics from "Trying Not To Love You" such as "you call to me and I fall at your feet/ how could anyone ask for more/ our time apart like knives in my heart/ how could anyone ask for more" then finally going into the chorus "Trying not to love you/ only goes so far/ trying not to need you/ is tearing me apart" and so on. For the ladies and such.

Overall Impression — 7
Nickelback hasn't skyrocketing into being one of my favorite bands with the release of "Here And Now", but I have to admit it isn't a terrible album. This isn't an album that I would be listening to on a regular basis on my mp3 player, but again I wouldn't change the radio station either. I guess my overall feelings towards the album are lukewarm. Not even lukewarm some of the riffs I really dig, but on the other hand the formulaic quality and the lyrical themes I almost detest. Very hot and cold mixture of feelings with this album and with Nickelback in general. My favorite songs on the album are probably "This Means War" and "Kiss It Goodbye". There are a few songs that I feel like are rubbish specifically "Don't Ever Let It End" and "Lullaby". The remaining songs are pretty much radio fodder. It is not a bad album, not a great album and not an especially sincere album.

66 comments sorted by best / new / date

    grohl1987
    I want to know, out of everyone that gave a user rating, how many people actually listened to a single song from this album before giving it a 1.
    EpiExplorer
    Samhuinn wrote: Instead of hate, please let us all just post lyrics which do mean something ^-^ 'Why pamper life's complexities when the leather runs smooth on the passengersseat?'
    I'd agree, but what you just said doesn't f**king mean anything.
    Jesse Clarkson
    I listened to a few tracks from this album. 'Gotta Get Me Some' stood out, nothing revolutionary, but a good rock song. I didn't pay attention to the lyrics but they probably wouldn't appeal to me. It's a shame songs like 'Follow You Home' from All The Right Reasons never got much attention. I know metal musicians who love the intro to that song. Maybe if people heard that they wouldn't be so quick to criticise the band. Their drummer (Daniel Adair) also plays with Dave Martone. If you enjoy prog/fusion then you should give Martone a listen. B52 is a good song for those interested. Unfortunately some people may struggle to accept that a Nickelback member has talent.
    Mainer
    Well, All The Right Reasons was great, Dark Horse was kinda blah. Hearing the first three tracks off of Here And Now, I already like it way better than Dark Horse Can't wait to hear the rest of it!
    I Thanatos
    anshul678 wrote: this message is to the one who posted the review first thing is that you dont know what music is about and i guess you are just a idiot who only listens to metal and that kind of stuff and the second thing the songs which you hated most are the best ones maybe you did't like them because u dont know to play them at all.
    Too bad you don't know how to avoid using run-on sentences.
    JimBonJovi
    I feel bad for this album review because people are coming here and giving it a 0 or 1 rating just because it's Nickelback. Oh well.
    TheAmenCorner89
    I imagine a great deal of the users rating this album negatively haven't even heard it yet. Personally I never understood the hate for Nickelback, they write catchy, anthemic rock songs that actually stick in your head in a good way, They rock harder than most bands that gain radio airplay. For those of you being elitist and think this is a comment from a radio-friendly rock fanboy, other bands at the top of my favourites include Opeth, Nevermore, Marduk and Devin Townsend. Chill out with the hate, and enjoy more than a narrow-minded view of what you think music should be.
    Battman1993
    You know how with some bands their singles are the best songs on their albums? With Nickelback, it's reversed. The songs that AREN'T singles are the best songs. For example, Because Of You from The Long Road, Good Times Gone from Silver Side Up, Side Of A Bullet from All The Right Reasons, and Just To Get High from Dark Horse. The first two Nickelback albums Curb and The State are just great all-around.
    haz_uk
    this album rocks man. take it for what it is - fun. they know how to write tunes.
    Mcjimmy
    The review may as well of just said, "this is Nickelback." I think that statement in a review would be self-explanatory.
    Cresspo
    mssrulez wrote: I never gave up on these despite my hatred for Dark Horse. Now, however, I'ma have to accept they've changed since The State...
    It took you 10 years to figure that one out? Their sound hasn't been the same to the state for 5 albums now. That happens to a lot of bands anyway. I've heard the album. Yes, it is generic, yes it is the same crap over and over again and so: if you liked any of their albums, you will probably like this one too. Don't come down telling people that it isn't good because it's the same kind of music over and over again cause that goes for most metalbands (and most artists for that matter) too.Doesn't mean that it's bad music. I'm not a big fan, I'm not a hater either, I just think that most arguments for dissing Nickelback are quite weak.
    umbrella666
    My musical taste is pretty diverse I would say. I'm completely a metal head but I change up a bit. I'll go from bands like Whitechapel to Lady Gaga and defiantly the classics. I must say though I don't mind Nickleback whatsoever and I'm not ashamed to say it at all. They have some MAJOR potential to become something more.
    LeakyFlask
    Samhuinn wrote: Instead of hate, please let us all just post lyrics which do mean something ^-^ 'Why pamper life's complexities when the leather runs smooth on the passengersseat?'
    Nice try, but how about this one: "And if you must go to work tomorrow well if I were you I wouldn't bother for there are brighter sides to life, and I should know because I've seen them, but not very often"
    godisasniper
    I agree with whoever it was above that posted that Nickelback's singles are usually the worst, most annoying songs on their albums. Their "filler" tracks are actually their best, because those are the ones where they don't sound like the same exact songs they've done over and over for years.
    Killswitch097
    In my opinion this album is one of the best ever written. Why ? Because it's Nickelback, and they are my favorite band. I grew up with their music and for that reason they mean a whole lot more to me then al the bands al these self proclaimed music critics are opting to be better then Nickelback. Sure I will get flamed for this comment and al these Nickelback haters won't take anything I say seriously anymore, but guess what... I don't give a flying shit ! And to top it all of: I would buy Chad's sig Les Paul. There suck on that trolls.
    Patrijz
    Great review. Honest and describes my opinion of every other Nickelback album to date:
    This isnt an album that I would be listening to on a regular basis on my mp3 player, but again I wouldnt change the radio station either. I guess my overall feelings towards the album are lukewarm. Not even lukewarm some of the riffs I really dig, but on the other hand the formulaic quality and the lyrical themes I almost detest.
    JimBonJovi
    I Thanatos wrote: Char2000 wrote: Cue the hate from the metal heads. Actually, anybody who has the slightest knowledge of music hates Nickelback.
    Music is subjective you moron. Why are you here talking about a band you hate?
    lpwjbklyn
    Superperfex wrote: I'm not a hater, I just find it insulting to see a band have such a similar formula for every album they've produced over and over and over again.
    I think it's a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" scenario. Look at Linkin Park. They repeated the formula that made them popular on only a single album (which, in and of itself, was much more varied than its predecessor) and then attempted to broaden their sounds on the next two records...and got absolutely crucified for it. Look at any comments section on a Linkin Park article around the time either of the last two albums was released and you'll see a thousand comments like "This new stuff is garbage. I want more of their old sound." You take a band like Nickelback that repeats the same formula on every album...and THEY get blasted for doing THAT. It's a simple formula, true, but it works nonetheless. Our society is spoiled by the sheer plethora of music and its instant availability, which has given many the sense that they are wannabe music critics. Most are just following the popular trend (in this case hating Nickelback...like this guy:
    cole.trickole wrote: Dear Nickelback, That's enough. Sincerely, The World
    and yet, at the end of the day, they're just making music that their fans enjoy. If you're a fan and you enjoy it, then great. If not, why even bitch about it? Focus on the bands that YOU enjoy instead of regurgitating the same trite "Nickelback sucks" mantras that most of the sheep bleat out.
    triface
    I'm not even sure why I'm writing this as a comment to an album review, but here goes.. If Nickelback changed their lyrical themes I'd say they would be quite an enjoyable band. Sure, catchy and generic music, but there is always a time for that. However, they're not doing that, which, in my opinion, makes them look like oversexed immature teenagers. Until the pistols in their songs refer to actual guns and not as euphemisms for the male genitalia, nope, not gonna happen.
    I Thanatos
    Char2000 wrote: Cue the hate from the metal heads.
    Actually, anybody who has the slightest knowledge of music hates Nickelback.
    RichieJovie
    As I actually have this album and have listened as opposed to random trolls just talking crap on here, it's ok, it's not as good as the last one , but it's quite listenable.
    thebigredjj10
    How many of the classic bands from back in the day released albums that sounded pretty formulaic back in the day, (No not Led Zepellin or the Who) such as AC DC, KISS, ZZ Top, Motorhead. But do people give them shit? (KISS yes.) I think part of it is the internet wasn't available or else some other bands would have gotten the hate too. I'm not a large Nickelback fan, but I admit they put on a good show and their albums, albeit formulaic and at times kind of stale, are pretty solid aside from that. But to those who don't like them. Fair enough, but easy tip, don't buy their CDs and most of you will do fine. Except for those who are punished by the radio, but I wouldn't blame Nickelback so much for that, blame the station for being a douche and overplaying shit.
    MegaGreg
    I hate Nickelback, though this album was passable at least. But It's still not so good as well. When a band gets a basic formula going on, it's gonna sound dull after a couple of albums. To me, they're just trying too hard and they should at least change something. I swear, I listened to this album twice, and it almost sounds like the same. Though Nickelback isn't the worst band out there. At least Nickelback can play music, when there's probably tons of bands with no talent or true structure.
    Paroxysm
    To me, Nickleback always write some good songs with a bunch of bad ones. The good songs are rocking though.
    alestorm666
    LeakyFlask wrote: Samhuinn wrote: Instead of hate, please let us all just post lyrics which do mean something ^-^ 'Why pamper life's complexities when the leather runs smooth on the passengersseat?' Nice try, but how about this one: "And if you must go to work tomorrow well if I were you I wouldn't bother for there are brighter sides to life, and I should know because I've seen them, but not very often"
    ''You shut your mouth how can you say I go about things the wrong way I am human and I need to be loved just like everybody else does''.
    alestorm666
    Samhuinn wrote: Instead of hate, please let us all just post lyrics which do mean something ^-^ 'Why pamper life's complexities when the leather runs smooth on the passengersseat?'
    Why would you quote The Smiths on a nickleback article?
    ninfan200
    formulaic or not this album still kicks more ass that a lot of music at the moment
    Battman1993
    Anybody else think Nickelback is the new Kiss? Generic as hell hard rock, simple lyrical themes almost exclusively about love and sex, and tons of records sale? I'm still a fan of Nickelback, but I'm holding out for a return to the Long Road/Silver Side Up days.
    Superperfex
    I'm not a hater, I just find it insulting to see a band have such a similar formula for every album they've produced over and over and over again.
    Bananafish003
    Nickelback, in some ways, is like hair metal: Big, dumb hard rock. But there's something that sets hair metal apart that makes it enjoyable for me: it never seems to take itself too seriously, which makes it fun . There are many reasons I won't listen to Nickelback, but the easiest to explain is that they think that they have to be "deep" or "sensitive" in some way, too, even in their, ahem, "heavy" songs. At least hair metal bands saved that shit for the awful ballads they wrote...
    JimBonJovi
    Curb and The State were superb organic records. I hope one day Mr.Kroeger & company may feel like going back to their roots as they'll have all the money in the world to do what they want. Hmmm This album has a few good songs but not as good as Dark Horse.
    RocknRory
    grohl1987 wrote: I want to know, out of everyone that gave a user rating, how many people actually listened to a single song from this album before giving it a 1.
    I haven't listened to a single song off this album, but I'm giving it a 3. It's a little better than a 1 (:
    slash.r0cks
    Inb4 haters hating Nickelback for being Canadian. Seriously though...yes, Nickelback is probably one of the cheesiest rock bands around these days, but they do write good music. Maybe it's not the rock music we're used to hearing from bands like Stone Sour, Rise Against or Foo Fighters these days, but they have proven time and time again that they are their own kind of rock band. I used to be a pretty big fan of these guys. I'm not as big a fan anymore, but I still like their music. Reading the review, I'll probably have a listen to this and get my own opinion.
    ninfan200
    I Thanatos wrote: JimBonJovi wrote: I Thanatos wrote: Char2000 wrote: Cue the hate from the metal heads. Actually, anybody who has the slightest knowledge of music hates Nickelback. Music is subjective you moron. Why are you here talking about a band you hate? Because their fanboys get butthurt so easily should anyone DARE to criticize their idols. That's why.
    dude every music fan since the dawn of music got butthurt when people criticized their fav groups, in laymans terms nobody can handle criticism at all
    Countsluggo
    i totally agree about the 2 sides of nickelback, they got some great riff driven tracks, and then also some really lame stuff the ladies eat up. I've grown to like some of nickelbacks stuff, especially off Dark Horse. They have incredible production and some of the best sounds recorded onto an album.
    FlyingPirahna
    "Nickelback's 7th studio album, though formulaic and with repetitive lyrical themes , is very catchy and at moments really great." I don't think a bit of catchiness can really make up for being beaten over the head with the same formula they've been using for years.
    mssrulez
    I never gave up on these despite my hatred for Dark Horse. Now, however, I'ma have to accept they've changed since The State...
    biff022
    Poison were terrible... but still far better than Nickelback. This pile of dog excrement here, smells a tad less like rotten peanut butter than that pile over there that's been sitting there for 25 years or so...
    codyjt5150
    Samhuinn wrote: Instead of hate, please let us all just post lyrics which do mean something ^-^ 'Why pamper life's complexities when the leather runs smooth on the passengersseat?'
    it's kinda obvious it's talking about sex. i'm pretty sure they've said that same expression of "animals" and i hate that song so much also. their songwriting sucks, the guitars sound the same on all the songs, and chad kroeger's voice is obnoxious like two turtles having sex.
    Vyden09
    Have you guys heard that one Nickelback song? Its the same song they put on every album