Review Summary: Still good, creative enough to keep you coming back for more. There is better, but still worthwile and up there with most successful bands.
The year is 2001. The band is Breaking Benjamin. Having two guys leaving a band (Lifer) that was starting to have some mainstream success, and then joining Breaking Benjamin turned out to be good, as Breaking Benjamin has evolved since releasing this as their debut album.
The riffs are good on this album, and the first song shows some promise to set up the album. It may not be mind blowing, but still a good job done by Aaron Fink on guitar. The sound of the guitar is similar throughout the album, but having the dual guitar played by Ben Burnley (who is also the singer) also helps a lot, as it adds more harmony to the album, and gets stuff accomplished with two guitars that you couldn’t normally get done with a single guitar. Examples of this are Sugarcoat
and No Games
The bass is done well, and Mark James makes it very audible, as throughout the whole album I can hear is deep, chunky riffs, driving the songs along. He is a crucial part to the sound of the album, mainly because the dual guitars are so loud, and he can cover some ground, making for a good mix of guitar and bass.
Drums appear to be the only issue with this album for me, as he starts to bore me by the end of the third song (and there are 12). He (formerly Jeremy Hummel) is now not in Breaking Benjamin. Jeremy does some decent work, mixing it up a bit, but it still comes down to the same drum patterns with a few twists and turns, but still not smoking the cigar, if you catch my drift. Ben does some good vocal work, having the good mix of screaming and singing. There is not too much of one or the other, as I can get through the album with a good balance of both. He does a decent job playing the rhythm guitar, just adding to the music.
As many of you may think, it is that Breaking Benjamin can be unoriginal in lyrical and musical structure. I can prove you wrong, and show you that they have some creativity. It is nowhere as good or imaginative as System of a Down for that matter, but still takes a gut or two to do it. The song Home
, a bit different lyrically from the album, as it is basically telling the story of The Wizard of Oz
. Personally, I don’t think SOAD could pull that off. It was done very well, and I listened to this and then watched the movie. It was pretty cool how it sounded.
Musically, listen to the song No Games
as it keeps modulating keys. The intro is odd, and the clean guitar is different from the rest of the album, but it stands out from the rest of the album. Both of these ways of being creative on the CD save it from being a pretty boring CD.
The band shows some Tool influences, along with Nirvana. The bass and guitar are Tool-esque, and Ben and Jeremy with the vocals and drums, respectively, can do a pretty decent Nirvana sound. Some good songs with both influences are Phase
and Natural Life
. Although most of the album shows bits and pieces of both bands.
Overall, I would recommend you to listen to this album. It is different than most mainstream music, as it possibly stands out above the rest. There is a good enough mix up of the songs to make me listen for more. A good listen for anybody.
I Wish I May