Imperial State Electric's third installment Pop War firmly establishes this Nicke Anderssonn led band as a sonic tour de force to be reckoned with. ISE's current members are Nicke Andersson: vocals, guitar, Dolf de Borst: backing vocals, bass, Tobias Egge: backing vocals, guitar Thomas Eriksson: drums, percussion. This line up deliver's a slab of slick 70's styled smokers which hits on all proverbial cylinders. This slab of 70's hard rock is served with plenty of great guitar work, harmonizing vocals, sing along choruses and a true album vibe that's hard to capture.
The CD opens with the power pop track "Uh Huh" which delivers the goods in a mere 1:44 seconds, track two "The Narrow Line" is a 70's hard rocker with killer riffs and bass too, track three "Can't Seem To Shake It Off My Mind" is a 70's pop tune with harmonizing chorus's and vocals, track four "Back On Main" is a shredder of the highest quality with great lyrics and some cool background vocals; this is a true highlight of the song writing ability of this band, track five "Waltz For Vincent" is a slow bass driven, gloomy tune which picks up on the chorus and drops back into the eerie gloom quite nicely, track six "Sheltered In The Sand" is another power pop tune with catchy chorus that will have your head nodding along, track seven "Empty Hands" reminds me of the Copters Rock N Roll Is Dead, it's a straight ahead rocker, track eight "Monarchy Madness" picks up the tempo again with a bit harder edge to it with some excellent riffs and vocal work, track nine "Deride and Conquer" is another excellent 70's rock fest, track ten "Enough To Break Your Heart" rounds out the disc with another power pop tune with some anthem lyrics and finishes out in instrumental fashion.
I want to point out that while I believe this is a another cracking release by a Nicke Andersson led band, some Hellacopter fans and even ISE fans may find some of the pop writing and sound in some of the songs a bit too much for their liking. There is plenty to hear on this CD from the guitar, bass and drum work, to some real different song writing. Keep in mind Nicke Andersson has always changed a bit from release to release and Pop War is no exception. This may divide some fans but there are some truly great songs on this Disc - Great Release 4.5/5 stars bumped to five on Amazon's rating scale.