Imperial State Electric - debut CD
Although this started as a solo project, he is joined here by Dolph de Borst (bass/vocals), Tomas Eriksson (drums), and Tobias Egge (guitar/vocals) - maybe not quite the HC's, but still a tight, rockin' combo. Plenty of guitars that sound like they coulda come from Kiss' Dressed to Kill, cool riffs and sing-along melodies highlight "A Holiday From My Vacation" and "Lord Knows That It Ain't Right" easily woulda fit on Rock&Roll Is Dead. Choppy rhythms punch out "Resign", a darker, yet still melodic number in a Cheap Trick-ish kinda way, and a simple punk-pop riff drives the frantic "Throwing Stones". Again highly reminiscent of the Hella's, "I'll Let You Down" starts out as almost a copy of one of Nicke's older songs until it turns into a bevy of Beatles/Cheap Trick melody lines and harmonies. "I Got All Day Long" is a cool, 70's pop-rocker, "Lee Ann" again is a moodier number, "Deja Vu" is a bouncy punk rocker, "Together in the Darkness" is totally 70's power-pop, then a sorta Foghat groove in "Alive", some heavier gloom in "Diseased Pieces of My Heart" before ending with the energetically rockin' "Redemption's Gone".
You can always tell Nicke when you hear him - his distinctive voice and songwriting, as well as his excellent guitar work and while I've compared these songs to other people, they all sound like Nicke. Cool stuff - I hope he continues to do more and comes back to the States sometime!