Sep 14, 2010

Unbreakable by Fireflight Review

 image from Amazon

Artist: Fireflight
Album: Unbreakable
Release Date: March 4, 2008
Tracks: 10
Runtime: 34:49


Track Rundown:
(All ratings out of 5 *'s)


1) "Unbreakable" - The first single of the album that I discovered on Pandora when looking for similar artists to Paramore. While Fireflight doesn't have the same attitude as Paramore, they're pretty close in terms to sound and quality. This song rocks pretty hard and is fully deserving of 5 *'s since it was strong enough to get me to buy their album.

2) "You Gave Me a Promise" - A really cool opening guitar riff kicks this song off just right but things get a little lighter and pop-punk from there. During the chorus I sometimes think I'm listening to We The Kings, which is no insult because I enjoy that band as well, it's just something that stands out. Not a bad song, but missing a little something special to make it a truly memorable song. Particularly toward the end of the song I feel I can only give 4 1/4 *'s because that extra passion and "it" was there, but it was a shame it wasn't there the entire song.

3) "Brand New Day" - Very unlike the previous two tracks in the sense it doesn't feel like a "rock band" is singing the song. It feels more like a pop-country singer, or someone just off of American Idol was given a big production budget and told to let loose and rock out. Compared to Unbreakable, it doesn't feel like the band is really cutting loose but if this were the first song I had ever heard of Fireflight, I'd still probably fall in love with them. 5 *'s.

4) "The Hunger" - I typically love songs about insatiable hunger, desire, lust, etc. but this one I'm on the fence about. It's either a pretty decent song on the topic or overtly preachy on how to live your life. It does have a pretty heavy guitar riff at the very end though. 3 1/2 *'s.

5) "Stand Up" - This song makes me sad, but not because of the message. It saddens me because the music is so awesome, and the performance has the "it" factor, but the lyrics are so painfully "blah"! It has a great guitar riff in particular, backup singing by the band members, and if it were about something else it would be a 5 * song. Unfortunately, I can only give it 3 *'s.

6) "Forever" - Surprisingly not a single from the album but totally deserving to be. This is what we call a hidden gem! Great all around. 5 *'s.

7) "Go Ahead" - Pretty strict filler here. Not the worst thing I've ever heard but absolutely drudging compared to the other tracks. 2 *'s.

8) "The Love We Had Before" - An original concept for the album - a duet between the lead singer and one of her male band mates. Great concept, great singing by both, great delivery, but the message of the song isn't as cool and gritty as it had the potential to be. First thing I thought this song was going to be about was a relationship on the rocks. Instead, it's more along the lines of Black Eyes Peas' "Where Is The Love?" talking about world peace. ... No. 2 *'s. Moving on.

9) "So Help Me God" - I really liked this track. Another hidden gem that didn't get turned into a single but had all the tools to get popular. It actually touches upon the topic I thought the previous track would hit. 5 *'s.

10) "Wrapped In Your Arms" - STRAP IN KIDS! WE'RE GOING ACOUSTIC! Until about 2 minutes in, then we get a full orchestra of sound. Not a bad song. She has a very pretty singing voice and carries this very gracefully. It didn't have the same relatability and "it" factor in the verses, but the format and flow of the music was amazing. 4 *'s and a great way to close out the album on a positive note.


My Highlights:
"Unbreakable", "Brand New Day", "Forever", and "So Help Me God". Do a little digging and see if like the way these songs sound because they're the tip to an iceberg of awesomeness.


Overall Rating:
Averaging all the ratings to these tracks, the overall rating for this album is an impressive 3 3/4 *'s out of 5, or 7 1/2 *'s out of 10. On occasion I'll give or take a little bit of a rating from an overall rating due to matters like run-time, number of tracks, impressibility, etc. but I think this is a very accurate rating for the album Unbreakable. Very little is known about this band in the mainstream, and I'll let you in on the dirty little secret why. First off, did you listen to the links in My Highlights? Have an opinion formed of their music? Alright, here's the kicker.

They're a Christian Rock band. Now off name-value of the genre, if you had known that before-hand you may not have given them the same chance. The South Park episode "Christian Rock Hard" comes to mind, where all of the Christian Rock bands are mocked and made to look silly and overtly preachy and wimpy. Tying yourself to religion in today's modern age can give you a great niche audience ("You can go double Myrrh!"), but, it can isolate you from other fans.

Some bands that I discovered a love for before knowing how they defined their own genre - Reliant K, Thousand Foot Krutch, Switchfoot, and Stryper. Don't get me wrong, there's the softer side of Christian Rock that just sing hymns with the volume turned up, but so long as a band isn't hovering over you thumping a bible, talent = talent, and can't be ignored! And Fireflight is talented.

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