First in Last out (Interscope/XL)
by Lex Marburger
An interesting mix of Seal, Peter Gabriel, and NIN (the slow stuff). Of course, anyone who wants to copy NIN sounds like Gravity Kills, Stabbing Westward, or Prick. Luckily, they chose Prick, the lesser of three evils. And, combining the other elements, Stroke come out with a minimum of suck. There is a track (“Sob”) that includes an homage to Coolio’s “Gangsta’s Paradise,” but I guess I can forgive that. I guess. All in all, it’s a moody album that could use a US media push. Ah, the lovely power of money… But I wouldn’t completely hate Stroke if they got the radio play. Just a little.