CD Review: Nick Riff – “Nick Riff’s Freak Element”

Musician Nick Riff was born to be a musician. He has spent the last several decades going from one rock band to another. Throughout his musical career, Riff has performed with all sorts of rock bands; some of which were straight-out rock, some were hard rock, and some were very psychedelic. With a resume that stretches back into the seventies, Nick Riff has become a seasoned professional.

And with that long of a resume, it also means that he has created quite a discography. By this point in his career, Nick Riff has amassed a collection of recordings that adds up to almost twenty-five releases, some of which were compilations on which his songs were included.

While most of Nick Riff’s discography is made up of albums that were strictly released in the U.S, some of his work has been released for consumption in England, as well. Riff’s release From The Heart of Oblivion in 1989 on English label Delirium. The label had so much confidence in Riff and his music that it also released two other albums: Cloak Of Immortality in 1995, and the album the came between the other two albums, the 1992 release, Freak Element.

Freak Element is the name of one of Nick Riff’s musical projects. The band was put together by Riff to create a certain style and feel to the music. The band only exists at certain times. When the members are available, they record; otherwise, Riff records with other musicians, or on his own.

The year 2008 happened to be one of those times when Nick Riff got together with Freak Element. For this project, the band consists of: Nick Riff on guitar and vocals, Peter Platten on synthesizers, keyboards, Kevin Hines on bass, and Rob King on drums. Together, this formation of Freak Element has created the 2008 release The World’s Alive.

The World’s Alive is a release that features a musical mixture that you don’t find everywhere: part of the music is psychedelic in nature, and part of the music has a very spaced out feel to it. Although that might seem like a very unusual combination, with the meaning behind the lyrics to Riff’s songs, the combination works in a way that seems very natural.

The songs on Nick Riff’s Freak Element album entitled The World’s Alive, the songs have a lot to do with the acknowledgement of the existence of life from beyond our planet. The album deals with existing with that life and trying to make contact.

While the majority of the material on The World’s Alive was written by Nick Riff, the band of musicians of Freak Element help to give the songs shape. Peter Platten, Kevin Hines and Rob King add the final touches to Riff’s compositions to make them full-fledged songs. And on “The Hidden Path” and “Pre-Millennium Transmission,” the band helps to compose the songs. Whether helping to add dimension to Riff’s songs, or actually helping to compose the songs, Platten, Hines, and King help make The World’s Alive an enjoyable listening experience.

The World’s Alive by Nick Riff’s Freak Element features the right amount of psychedelic rock and extra-terrestrial elements to create a unique listening experience. If you’re up for something that’s a little “out of this world,” take a chance with this 2008 release.

To experience the fascinating album of The World’s Alive by Nick Riff’s Freak Element, go to You can also find Nick on MySpace at

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1 Comment

  1. Thanks for the review. I am always looking for something new and different and based on your review I checked out Nick RIff’s Freak Element. That is some outstanding stuff! Wang!

    Looking forward to more, both from Nick and from this site.

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