Nickelback plays it safe on new CD

Not every band can be the Beatles. In fact, very few bands have been able to reinvent themselves on each album. The members of Nickelback don’t stretch themselves artistically on their latest record, The Long Road, but they don’t leave fans disappointed, either. The band sticks with the same combination it used on 2001’s Silver Side Up: raw emotion backed with distorted power chords. While the approach might not be new or innovative in the rock world, it’s certainly effective. Silver Side Up went multi-platinum and produced three No. 1 rock hits—“Too Bad,” “Never Again” and “How You Remind Me.” According to Billboard Monitor, the group was the most played rock act of 2002 across all radio formats. The Long Road’s first single, “Someday,” is already rocketing up the charts. After achieving success of this magnitude, it would be hard to blame Nickelback for sticking with a winning formula. While some of the CD’s 14 tracks are rather repetitive, they are not merely recycled versions of the band’s earlier hits. They all have their own style, but do tend to be predictable at times. The Long Road does feature a few surprises, such as a heavily distorted cover of Elton John’s “Saturday Night’s Alright (For Fighting)” that benefits from lead singer Chad Kroeger’s rough vocals and a Dimebag Darrell guitar solo. The reflective “Should’ve Listened” is an acoustic-tinged track that forms a nice contrast with some of the heavier numbers. While The Long Road may not have been as diverse as some critics would have liked, it is still a solid rock CD and will likely attain great commercial success. Fans can catch Nickelback when they play Assembly Hall in Champaign on Oct. 26. For more information visit

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