It’s been years since Nelson has released any new material and even longer since they’ve had a radio hit (1991 to be precise). So, why would the band think that after all this time, they would be able to release a brand new album that fans would find relevant and want to add to their music collection? The answer is simple. Nelson still has talent. They proved that with their new release, Lightning Strikes Twice (due out in February in the US, available now in Europe). Lightning Strikes Twice is the perfect complement to After The Rain, even though it is several years (and several albums) removed from the Nelson debut.
Matthew and Gunnar Nelson are still a talented pair of twins with their father’s (Ricky Nelson) blessed ability with the gift of music. After several years away from the studio, the twins decided that it was time to record some new material and release it to the public. Whether they’ve been sitting on this material for years, or recently wrote it with a new album in mind is hard to tell, but one thing’s for certain – the material is excellent.
Officially billed as the sequel to 1990’s After The Rain, Lightning Strikes Twice is a true return to that era of good time, happy, rock and roll. It’s a return to a style of music that didn’t take itself too seriously and only cared about having a music party with a great groove. Lightning Strikes Twice has accomplished this feat with relative ease. Both Matthew and Gunnar sound incredible. Their voices have not aged over the years and there is no hint that either of them lost their ability behind the microphone.
Gunnar’s talent with the guitar is still fascinating. The solos on Lightning Strikes Twice are rich and deep, and while the basic structure of the songs can sometimes be “cheesy,” it’s that kind of corny that we are looking for to rescue us from the layered, over thought, overly produced hard rock of today. Gunnar and his guitar bring it back to the simplicity of yesteryear.
Thematically, Lightning Strikes Twice builds on the similar ground that produced Nelson’s chart topping debut album. Broken hearts, lots of parties, and the chivalrous, “boy rescues girl from bad relationship” are all present and accounting for. Sappy, romantic lines textured with high wailing guitar solos drench this record throughout. Boy meets girl, boy falls for girl, boy wants girl in the worst way, boy doesn’t know how to tell girl he loves her… the list goes on and on. If you enjoyed (or still enjoy) After The Rain, then you are going to love Lightning Strikes Twice.
While the album is not groundbreaking by any stretch of the imagination, Lightning Strikes Twice is more about the fun factor. If you want to revisit the late 80s/early 90s without having to get nostalgic or find your own flux capacitor, listening to Lightning Strikes Twice is the best way to do it. Chock full of nothing but fun and happiness (even on the sad songs), this is a terrific album that you should get your hands on.
- Call Me
- Day By Day
- Ready, Willing, And Able
- How Can I Miss You?
- You’re All I Need Tonight
- To Get Back To You
- When You’re Gone
- Take Me There
- In It For The Money
- Change A Thing
- Kickin’ My Heart Around