We’re not going to pretend that music industry icon Chrissie Hynde needs a huge introduction; the world is all to familiar with the commercial success of her long running rock group, The Pretenders. Now at the tender age of 62, Chrissie is set to release her debut solo album, Stockholm. It is not unknown that for some time throughout the career of The Pretenders that Chrissie was pretty much running the show, but this time she is on her own for real, and with guest instrumentalists such as Neil Young and John McEnroe we should be in for a hell of a treat.
It’s a mellow opening for the album with the soft rock vibe that is You Or No One, that cliche track about that one love you want to spend the rest of your life with. The riff that carries the edgier Dark Sunglasses is forever being followed by your mind, and there’s something vintage about the atmosphere of the alternative rock number Like In The Movies. Down The Wrong Way may have missed the mark, it just didn’t really seem to stand out from or as much as its predecessors; You’re The One also didn’t really take off to places unknown. A Plan Too Far demonstrates more of that classic Hynde voice, that low and edgy tone that sends shivers up your spine, and during the choruses she comes across as sweet.
In A Miracle is dark and serenading all at once, don’t ask how, just have a listen to the different tones and energies you experience upon hearing the track; House of Cards also has some highlights about it, Chrissie’s vocal is as strong as ever. The most down key track on the album is Tourniquet (Cynthia Anne), it has a nice melody and rawness to it; it isn’t long however before we see the guitars and drums make a comeback with Sweet Nuthin, just as catchy as the bulk of Stockholm. Hynde’s solo debut comes to a close on a lighter note, Adding The Blue is another track that shows us that raw side to Chrissie’s contralto vocal.
It is better late than never, that’s what they always say, and this case refers to the amount of time that has passed before Chrissie Hynde decided to release a solo album. At the age of 62, Hynde proves she still has what it takes to make music and she will continue to do so, whether that be on her own or with The Pretenders. Stockholm is a collection of the lighter feel of rock, it is a project that Chrissie should be proud of and will hopefully satisfy existing followers of The Pretenders and establish a new legion of fans.