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NICKELBACK - THE STATE (Pre-owned CD, 2000, Roadrunner)

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NICELBACK - THE STATE (Pre-owned CD, 2000, Roadrunner) 

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Nickelback, winners of Canada's Juno Award for Best New Band and Creed's tour-mates, are heavily influenced by the anthemic and articulate soulfulness of Pearl Jam. The State is consciously dramatic--sweet strums are overwhelmed by crashing waves of distorted guitar. Singer Chad Kroeger meaningfully wails tales of small-town woe, centering on complex relationships, a claustrophobic underground culture, and the struggle between staying and leaving. Yet Nickelback are at their best when they set aside their Pearl Jam debts, as with the heavy "Deep," the grinding "Not Leavin' Yet," and the more experimental "Worthy to Say." Nickelback are good, but still growing--possibly into something great. --Dominic Wills