He may be best known for his involvement with QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE, DWARVES and his own baby MONDO GENERATOR, but NICK OLIVERI has always been extremely prolific with a wide variety of projects. The notorious vocalist/bassist spit out the follow-up to “N.O. Hits at All Vol. 3” merely four months after its release. “N.O. Hits at All – Vol. 4” is the final installment of a four-part series of compilations featuring “best of” tracks, rarities, as well as some unreleased material from Oliveri‘s own projects and various collaborations—QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE, DWARVES, KYUSS LIVES! , DEATH ACOUSTIC, WINNEBAGO DEAL, ROYALE DEAMONS (with Wino and Joey Castillo)—over his quarter-of-a-century-long career.
The considerably raw, demo-like production value adequately serves the nature of the garage punk attitude prevalent on the bulk of the material. “N.O. Hits at All – Vol. 4” is short and sweet, perhaps too short, but there is no nonsense within the eight songs that span across a mere 19 minutes. The batch of manic hymns on “N.O. Hits At All Vol. 4” begins with THE UNCONTROLLABLE‘s “Walk On”. The notorious frontman boasts his impressive talents on this old school punk styled track as he handles vocals, bass, guitar and drums. Following track “Identity, Isolate, Manipulate”, by BIBLICAL PROOF OF UFOs, appropriately follows suit with its central, fist-clenching riff just prior to Oliveri‘s unplugged take on THE RAMONES‘s “Endless Vacation” (with DEATH ACOUSTIC). Indeed, also considering the gutter dwelling quality of THE DWARVES‘s “Fuck You Up And Get High” or the take on Jennifer Finch‘s “Susy Is A Headbanger”, Oliveri‘s inclination toward classic, bare-bones punk is prominent on this compilation.
The final piece of the “N.O. Hits At All” series serves to remind us of Oliveri‘s value as a modern day punk rock icon, and much more than that, as well. He is properly regarded as such in some quarters; however, he remains mysteriously overlooked by many. What’s more, Oliveri‘s involvement with KYUSS and QUEENS OF THE STONE AGE bridged the aforementioned sensibilities with the more bombastic aspect of hard rock and SABBATH-styled metal. (LOADING DATA‘s “Hanging Low” entails the most evident qualities of the QUEEN OF THE STONE AGE angle on “N.O. Hits at All – Vol. 4”.) Oliveri has already left a lasting influence upon heavier styles of music that lingers and continues today in a unique manner that resembles the more obvious aspects of heavy metal and punk rock without following the templates too closely. “N.O. Hits at All – Vol. 4” is an interesting addition for longtime fans and completists, certainly since it includes some unreleased work, as well as an adequate gateway for curious onlookers and newbies.