A rock band from Norway which is releasing their first album after 17 years… That’s about the story when I quickly scanned the press release of Closer to the Light, the new album by the Ricochets. I finally had a deeper look into the promo package and felt that this one is indeed an album worth sharing with you – here is my review of the 3rd February 2023 release.
Ricochets – About The Artists
The Ricochets are a rock band from Frederikstad, a city South of Oslo and close to the Swedish border. Their current lineup consists of Trond Andreassen (vocals), Knut Oyvind Olsen (bass), Svenn Poppe Jr. (piano), Fredrik Gretland (guitar) and Johan Edvarsdsson (drummer). Andreassen and Olsen have been part of the band when the band has been founded and Poppe Jr. has already been part of it when the band split up in 2009. You shouldn’t mix them up with a British psychobilly band or with a US country music band, by the way. The Norwegians have released three albums so far. So-Mo Suicide (2000) has received quite a lot of good critics after its release and paved the route for quite some popularity of the band – their 2023 tour in Norway has already been sold out. The two other releases are The Ghost Of Our Love (2003) and Isolation (2005).
Ricochets – Closer to the Light – Track by Track
The ten song album lasts 44 minutes.
1. Time to Go
The five minute opener Time to Go feels like blues and rock. The song comes with a great groove and – last, but not least – a very catching chorus. A rock blast at moderate speed as the starter to this ten song experience – it simply feels really good!
2. Backseat Drivers
The second song is a great rock’n’roll song. While the first notes could also introduce a surf rock track, Backseat Drivers has just the level of “dirtiness” to make it a treat for rock music lovers. Classic rock with a nice extra.
3. Shooting Star
Shooting Star has been the first single release of the album and teased Closer to the Light in November 2022 already. The track feels like the 1980’s, it reminds me of Billy Idol recordings, while the more angry parts could also emerge from a Meat Loaf album Lovely rock’n’roll.
4. Closer to the Light
In between the two single releases, the Ricochets have placed the title track. The song is comparably fast and is nicely driven by drums as well as lovely melodic themes from the electric guitar. That work feels to be a bit of monotonous, but it just works out perfectly.
5. Galaxies (Dead End Street)
The fifth song of the album (and also its latest single releases) is slower and rather focuses on its melodic sides. The chorus is a great sing-a-long. Overall, the song is significantly profiting from excellent work on the keys.
6. That’s How It Goes
This song is another one on my “If you like rock’n’roll, you have to listen to it”-list. The song has rather slow verses and feels like a rock ballad. The chorus, however, is taking the full speed and has a slight rockabilly touch. The most fun listen of the album, indeed.
7. Figure It Out
Figure It Out is a great listen, especially for hard rock lovers. The Norwegians do not just show their great talent on the strings, though – the song is also a treat on the strings as well. Trond Andreassen presents quite a wide vocal range as well, so that this one is one of my favorites in this collection.
8. See Me Change
The guys keep on pushing for rock power. See Me Change comes with a lot of energy from the guitars, which also have some really great instrumental parts. The chorus is simple, but gets it’s job done very decently. These Scandinavians making me smile.
The second last song adds a slow, very intense, sometimes a bit of whiny style to the album. However, Instincts also has these moments, in which the anger is breaking out. Cool listen.
10. True to Love
The ballad True to Love initially felt a bit too kitschy to me. But the more I listen to it, the more I feel it is not a bad final song at all. Nice style.
Ricochets – Closer to the Light – Spotify
Here is the album on Spotify:
Ricochets – Closer to the Light – My View
Regardless if you have some memories to the band one and a half decades ago or not – Closer to the Light is simply a really nice rock album. The songs tell different stories and come with different styles, you can just enjoy the music or listen to the tracks more deeply. It works and it is fun. Thus, I really like it – even though it lacks some very good songs, maybe.
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