Overall Score: 6.5/10 Fun: 8/10 Originality: 6/10 Punchiness: 7/10 Pros: Fun | Short, and punchy Cons: Derivative both compositionally and lyrically without finding its own style
Save the Nation the second release by Swedish Hard Rock band Royal Republic takes a derivative hard rock formula into which a heady sense of reckless fun is enthused.
Songs like the title track ‘Save the Nation’ will plaster a huge grin on your face with its anthemic chorus shrieking “a vote for me is a vote for you” backed up all the time by a relentlessly driving rhythm section whilst ‘Everybody Wants To Be An Astronaut’ will get you singing along on first listen.
Save the Nation also remains relatively concise and punchy with most songs rarely venturing over the three-minute mark meaning the album clocks in at only half an hour, helping make sure ‘Save the Nation’ does not overstep its welcome. Yet, despite its undisputable fun and punchiness ‘Save the Nation’ is not without flaws. Riffs and vocal patterns that we’ve all heard before from The Darkness – coupled with current oversaturation of such straight-down-the-line hard rock is ‘Save the Nation’s’ downfall.
It’s not that ‘Save the Nation’ is a bad album by any stretch, it’s not. The problem is that this variety of fun, cheesy and hook-filled hard rock has already been mastered by ‘The Darkness’ on ‘Permission to Land,’ an album that will be ten years old next year. This album could have been churned out by any number of bands who’ve had a childhood filled with KISS, Def Leoppard and AC/DC. This is no bad thing however, just take a look at Black Spiders and you’ll see that this particular style can still carry some weight if some original ideas are developed alongside the conventions of the genre.
Ultimately Save the Nation is fun enough and has some very catchy moments but suffers from cliché-plagued lyrics and a distinct lack of originality in composition. Yet, much like their peers in ‘The Darkness’ you may know they’re pure cheese but you’re still, ultimately, going to find yourself singing along no matter how hard you might try not to.