Pretty Wild: ‘Interstate 13’

To be released on May 31, 2019 (Sound Pollution)

Embarrassingly I must admit that I had never heard of Pretty Wild until a few months ago when Sleaze Roxx posted a news article about the band’s pending album release. The article also contained a link to the video clip for the song “Break Down The Walls” which was originally released as a single back in 2016. From the moment that I heard the intro riff and high pitched vocals, I knew that this band was definitely going to be one that I would be adding to my music collection.

After doing a bit of research, I was surprised to see that Pretty Wild have been around since at least 2006 and have released an EP titled All The Way in 2008 and a self-titled debut album in 2014. Like many other bands, Pretty Wild appear to have faced their own trials and tribulations along the bumpy road to rock, with line-up changes and stagnant musical releases, most notably with Interstate 13 originally being slated for a 2017 release. However, I can happily confirm that the wait was definitely worth it and Pretty Wild’s Interstate 13 is a blistering slab of ’80s inspired arena rock guaranteed to get you head banging and fist pumping.

“Let’s Get It Out” opens the album with a short intro that has a Bon Jovi “Lay Your Hands On Me” type vibe mixed with something that is a bit more tribal. We are then thrust straight into the body of the song with a great riff that brings on the previously mentioned ’80s feel, with a big commercial sound full of vocal harmonies, keyboards, high pitched lead vocals and a memorably chorus. “Meant For Trouble” follows with a great chunky riff that reminds me of something that Zakk Wylde would have played around the No Rest For The Wicked period, though Pretty Wild sensibly choose not to add any form of pinch harmonics to the riff. Overall the song feels really inspired by Crashdïet, with another big chorus and some great outro screams culminating to great affect. Next is “Superman” with its lullaby vibe intro that quickly transitions into a full on rock assault. Song wise, the verses sound a lot like Hammerfall whereas the chorus sounds like Reckless Love. This may seem like a strange combination with both of those bands coming from different genres, but that’s just the impression I am getting. Either way, everything fits nicely and the song is great.

“Wild And Free” is very ballad-esque but does not travel down the typical ‘I love you — I can’t live without you’ route. It is predominately an acoustic song, broken up with big power chords during the choruses to add some intensity, and lyrics about living your life on your own terms. “Give It All Tonight” follows and is another great rocker. An extremely ’80s fashioned metal riff and drum build up takes us on an enjoyably fun journey, with background keyboards holding up the verses. One criticism I do have about the song is that it seems to rush into the chorus leaving things feeling a bit flat instead of bombastic. Next is the excellent “Stand My Ground” which is basically a fusion of punk, metal and commercial rock. The start of the song sounds something like Hardcore Superstar, but when we get to the bridge, a flurry of underlying keyboard notes takes us to a big build up and chorus which would fit nicely into an arena rock type situation.

The great ’80s inspired tunes continue with “The Way I Am” which is another great rocker with a big commercial feel. I can just imagine this song having a video clip of the band’s exploits on the road whilst also showcasing their interactions with their fans. It feels like that type of song. Vocally, Ivan Ivve Höglund is on fire. All over Interstate 13, he sings to perfection and with great ease, but it is “The Way I Am” where I feel we can really hear how good he is, even in subdued moments, where his voice retains a high pitch with little to no effort.

“Thanks To You” follows with an acoustic guitar arpeggio intro and underlying orchestrated notes added for atmosphere. Unfortunately for me, the song is a full on ballad, yet it does throw up some unexpected instrument sounds and transitions along the way. It is a good show of how versatile the band is, but overall, the song is maybe too corny to have even been a hit during the ’80s, though no doubt the female fan base will love it for it’s sentimentality. Next is “Shot Me Down” which returns us to great energetic rock. A common theme on most rock albums containing a ballad is that the follow up song is a return to what we come to expect from the band. I take this as the band apologizing to me for making me endure the ballad. “Shot Me Down” is no exception, and I happily accept the band’s apology.

“Walk The Edge” has a great melodic intro and I really love the verse and bridge riffs. It also contains a great guitar solo. Structure wise, it is the perfect example of how to let a song breathe before entering the chorus, something that would have served well on “Give It All Tonight.” “I Love It” follows and is another rocker, this time utilizing an all too familiar blues based rhythm. The song bounds along with energy, fun lyrics, an explosive guitar solo and maintains the ’80s vibe. The last song on the album “Break Down The Walls” really solidifies what Pretty Wild is all about. It is a culmination of everything you will find on Interstate 13 –– big riffs, high pitched lead vocals, great gang vocals, driving rhythms, shredding guitar solos and busts of keyboards. It is the perfect song to conclude proceedings.

For fans of Pretty Wild, it has been a long wait between releases, however Interstate 13 is the type of reward that makes it all worthwhile. I would anticipate that considering the Interstate 13 material was completed back in 2017, the band may already have sufficient material written for a follow up release, ensuring that it comes sooner rather than later next time around. If you are into bands such as Crashdïet, Crazy Lixx and Reckless Love, then you are going to love Pretty Wild.

Track List:
01. Let’s Get It Out
02. Meant For Trouble
03. Superman
04. Wild And Free
05. Give It All Tonight
06. Stand My Ground
07. The Way I Am
08. Thanks To You
09. Shot Me Down
10. Walk The Edge
11. I Love It
12. Break Down The Walls

Band Members:
Ivan Ivve Höglund – vocals
Axl Ludwig – guitar
Kim Chevelle – bass
Johnny Benson – drums

Produced, mixed and mastered by Ivan Höglund

Band Websites:
Official Website

Reviewed by Daz for Sleaze Roxx, May 2019

Pretty Wild’s “Meant For Trouble” video:

Pretty Wild – Meant for trouble

Meant For Trouble by Pretty Wild from their third album Interstate 13.Releasedate May 31st 2019.Get Meant for Trouble from album Interstate 13 on:Amazon Link…

Pretty Wild‘s “Superman” video:

Pretty Wild – Superman (Official Musicvideo)

Official Musicvideo Superman by Pretty Wild from their third album Interstate 13Releasedate May 31st 2019.Get Superman from album Interstate 13 on: https://o…

Pretty Wild‘s “Break Down The Walls” video:

Pretty Wild – Break Down the Walls (Official Video)

Get Break Down the Walls on:…