It’s hard to believe that its 2006 when listening to Nick James’ Into Me.
Everything about it, songwriting, production, melody, even Nick’s voice, is very reminiscent of mid-nineties radio favorites Fuel, Nickelback, and yes, even Creed. (Think Scott Stapp minus the annoying stage gestures and more talent.)
In fact, this is the first CD I’ve reviewed for The Pulse I believe would be commercially viable “as is.”
Nick’s songwriting is raw, emotional and extremely polished?John Mayer-style lyrics backed by more rock.
From the quality of his songs it is evident that he has been writing songs and playing music for several years.
The opening track “Don’t Like It” is highly infectious, for better or worse. I couldn’t get the chorus, that just repeats the words “I don’t like it” in Nick’s southern drawl, out of my head. Towards the end of the song, he goes into a hard rock “ROAR” moment, and I was extremely impressed by its effectiveness. In too many cases bands overuse the “ROAR,” throwing away actual singing for screaming mostly angry lyrics, giving me the false hope that I too, may one day be a singer if all I had to do was go onstage and scream a bunch of garbled shit into a microphone.
Fortunately, Nick used the “ROAR” in moderation and I was surprised by how it really did add to the quality of the song.
“Moment” is the album’s power-ballad.
Have you ever had a moment that you were lost in space? Have you ever had a moment that time is passing you by? Have you ever had a moment that you never erased? Have you ever had a moment . . . just stop and embrace.
With lyrics like that and such heartfelt singing, there is no doubt that this is the song that gets him the ladies. The song is so sweet it makes me want to go give him a hug or pinch his cheeks.
Self-produced, Nick evidently pays attention in his RIM classes. The recording gives a very live feel and is mixed so that the lyrics still stand out against the heavy guitar.
Into Me is a likeable album from start to finish. My only suggestion for Nick is he might want to consider changing his name on the CD. I can’t image how old and irritating it is going to be for Nick hearing “I’m Nick James, bitch!” everywhere he plays and I surely do not wish for him to have a Chappelle-style meltdown.