Review Summary: While it can be debated that this is their most mature work to date, Life Starts Now proves that 3DG can make a better record than One-X and add a few new elements to their music. On some tracks, it’s successful, but it’s still suffering similar flaws
Three Days Grace has always been a hit-or-miss band. Plain and simple, they are modern mainstream rock. Adam Gontier’s voice has been very accessible to a lot of people, and it shows in the fact that their songs are all over the radio every day nonstop. As a result, almost everyone knows who they are. Their records, though there are few, compose of Adam singing lyrics that repeat the same subject on almost every track, a group of guitar chords with metal-like distortion to keep things rocking with bass lines to back it up and a steady drum beat to keep it all moving along. One-X would have been a pretty fun record, and it was for a while, but the radio just killed it. Almost every other time I turned on a rock station I heard “Animal I Have Become”, “Riot”, “Never Too Late”, or “Pain”. The amount of times that these songs were played just made the record unbearable to listen to after a while. I found myself wondering if they could ever make a record that would both be consistent and would actually withstand the test of time. In 2009, 3DG return with a new record of tunes for us to listen to. It’s up to you to decide if it is an improvement, a failure, or a rehash of everything they’ve already done. At least they’ve added some new stuff this time around.
You might get a hint that things are slightly different this time when you hear “Bitter Taste”. It has a similar lyrical theme to some of the songs found on the previous record, but it features a good main riff and an actual guitar solo. It works pretty well and is a welcome addition to the song, as it would otherwise be a boring copy of something off of the last 2 records. Sadly, some of the songs on here are just that. The lead single, “Break”, features what might possibly be the best bass line they’ve ever put in a song next to the one in “Goin’ Down”. It drives the song and is quite groovy, but the chorus kills it. It tries way too hard to be a great rock song when it’s just ok. “Lost in You”, as cheesy as it might be, might be considered a standout track. It will no doubt become one of the songs played on the radio sooner or later, but the clean guitars and great melody matched with Adam’s more tolerable vocal moments make it a catchy and good track. “Goin’ Down” is one of the heavier, more rocking tracks on the album and has great bass and guitar work with effective use of a wah-wah pedal by Barry Stock. In “World So Cold”, the whole band pulls through in an attempt to make one of the best songs on the album, and it manages to sound ok after a while, but I sadly fear it will be overplayed as well.
The lyrics on this album might be seen as a weak point to some. Adam can sing, that’s for sure, but unfortunately he repeats his lyrical themes too much. Almost every song on here can be compared to a song on the previous 2 records as far as what the song is about and what message he is trying to convey. He has yet to prove himself fully. Check out the title track, “Lost in You”, “Bitter Taste”, or “Last to Know” for examples of how well he can sing. The use of piano on “Last to Know” is actually quite nice, but the lyrics bring the song down completely as the worst on the record. Guitarist Barry Stock tries a few different things on this record. He can solo, as he finally shows on some of the tracks here, and he adds some great effects on some of the tracks. The guitar work is a strong point for this band and it really shows on this record more than the others. Bassist has some moments to shine on here as well, giving his best performance to date. As I said before, “Break” and “Goin’ Down” feature some of the best bass lines he’s written so far. They are audible and help drive the songs. Drummer does nothing stellar to stick out on this record, he mainly backs up everything else with a good beat, and that seems to work best for the music 3DG makes.
In all, Three Days Grace are trying to break from what they’ve been doing on their previous records, but it isn’t entirely successful on Life Starts Now. They have yet to show they can really make a consistent record, and sadly this might not be possible seeing as the radio will surely devour everything they ever make and overplay it. That is another thing that will surely make this record grow off a lot of people in the end. I have a soft spot for this band, so I can see myself throwing this album on every now and then, but probably nothing more. It’s not that bad and if you are a fan you will enjoy it for sure, but if you can’t stand them then do not check this out. It won’t do anything for you.
I used to love this band until i beat them to death, stopped listening to them, then years later went back to them, and discovered how much they really suck. you have to be 12 years old to like this band, honestly.
I Hate Everything about Them! Now is their Time of Dying, but perhaps it's Never too Late for them to Break from Goin' Down before It's All Over.
No, I don't really hate them but this album doesn't catch my attention. I'll hand it to them for trying to go somewhere further with their sound but the only one I actaully liked was "World So Cold" but the riffs on "Bully" were cool. Other than that, an average album...
Oh no... I've pre-ordered this album about three weeks ago and when I heard the song (well part of it) 'Break' I thought it was not very good. And if the rest of album is crap then I'm going to be pissed. Well at least there's the new Arch Enemy album coming out in 2 weeks that will be far better than this (I hope) : /
First, to the write and so called "fan" of TDG, shut up.
Second, I don not know where you live or what radio station you listen to but in Australia we hear nothing of TDG on the radio. I'm a huge fan of theirs and am really proud of the music they have produced in "Life Starts Now". Sure, there are some songs that are not as easy-listening as others but still has that music quality which TDG has managed to maintain in ALL of their songs. It is something we, as listeners, are accustomed to hearing. For a band that no one here in Aus knows about they have out done themselves again by introducing new sounds with Barry showing us what he is really capable of on guitar and hearing Adam experimenting with different vocal styles.
To Three Days Grace, I say well done!
For all the other people who decide to bag out TDG then get lost and get a life. When it comes to music, I listen to the quality and musicality of songs. This means I love music ranging from Classical to Bosanova, Pop to Death Metal. E.g. in the classical piece, "Adagio in G Minor" by Tomas Albinoni there is a great sense of sadness and beauty which can be mirrored in the metal song "Snuff" by Slipknot (from All Hope Is Gone album).
Alize, you should practice what you preach. I'm pretty sure I wasn't the only one who cringed while reading through your rant.
Beyond that, there is a significant difference between keeping an open mind, and simply accepting everything as is - the good and bad. Let's be realistic; Three Days Grace is pretty damn generic at its core and they haven't really changed much from their debut. It isn't the most god awful music I've ever heard, but it's pretty uninspired stuff.
And posting your credentials really doesn't make you the ultimate decider of good and bad music.
BassDemon333, solid review. I think someone already mentioned it, but just watch out for comma splicing. Some of your passages are a little awkward to read. Pos'd.