The Fray
How to Save a Life


1.5
very poor

Review

by chickenfish USER (6 Reviews)
November 26th, 2007 | 17 replies


Release Date: 2005 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Finding a solid and true song is impossible and unheard of on this album.

Having style and substance is quite hard in the music world. Arguing over what bands/artists have both, is practically useless. The idea of substance is thrown around so much in our society that you begin to lose focus on what is actually good. Your definition is skewed to some sort of mind controlling media … cloud should I say? Nonetheless discovering the definition, comes from digging deeper and deeper into the music, and trust me folks there’s not much to dig here.

Straight from Denver, Colorado comes the four piece alternative rock band, The Fray. Shortly after becoming an official band, the band saw immediate success. “How to Save a Life” the first single of their debut, gained much popularity from being aired on the TV show ‘Scrubs’. Second in line was “Over My Head (Cable Car)”, which found itself among top artists on the Billboard Top Hundred list. As the popularity grew, The Fray started announcing tour dates, and to this day The Fray has had huge media success, selling out shows across the world.

So all this talk of success, and popularity, you’d probably like to know what all the fuss is about. The album opens up with, “She Is” a song driven with a slow paced piano. At first the music in focus doesn’t teeter towards the dark side, it holds up till you engage into the lyrical content and the blandness of the band in general. Whilst lead singer, Isaac Slang holds a clean and true tone throughout the music, it doesn’t seem to fulfill its duty. The lyrical content is far below average, and holds little to no actual emotion. Basic angst teenage relationships are what you find here, and the words used to describe them are dry and boring.

Getting past frontman flaws, you dive into an ocean of bland and generic musicianship. When you think of The Fray, a few thoughts come up; one of those is the piano the band has. Besides the vocals it’s the most popular instrument in the band. While being merely entertaining at times, the piano lacks in style and substance. The more songs you listen to, the more you realize the piano never really leaves its ground, never does anything new. No sweeps, no tempo change, equals a bland presentation of piano.

Alongside the piano are the guitars and the drum set. The songs rely on simple guitar work that never impresses you nor holds your interest. Soft clean tones play throughout each song, followed by the same distorted power chord, choruses. Drums don’t do much different in terms of innovation. The songs are plagued with similar fills and verse beats, and ultimately never really sound good.

Billboard leaders, The Fray hold much style but show no substance. Their album lacks horribly from boring song structures, and bland writing. Finding a solid and true song is impossible and unheard of on this album. It runs for 46 minutes too long, and holds absolutely no redeeming features. Maybe their next will be something, who knows.



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user ratings (499)
3.1
good
other reviews of this album
TylerC (3.5)
...

(>dragon~guitarist<) (4)
...


Comments:Add a Comment 
botb
November 26th 2007


13817 Comments


Possibly bias, but well written. I disagree but you do prove points quite well.

roofi
November 26th 2007


959 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I like this album, but it's extremely overplayed and there isn't a chance in hell they'll ever match this.

Acre
November 26th 2007


847 Comments


Pretty good review. I've only heard How To Save A Life, and it didn't impress me at all.

botb
November 26th 2007


13817 Comments


not me, i pos'd it.

Doppelganger
November 26th 2007


3124 Comments

Album Rating: 1.0

This album is horrible.

TheStarclassicTreatment
November 26th 2007


2910 Comments


I used to hate these guys till I saw them live.
Very good singer

thesystemisdown
November 27th 2007


416 Comments


It sounds like your primary objection was that it wasn't very technical and that it was a pop album. This band is good for what they are, sort of like a less Radiohead-influenced Coldplay.

McP3000
November 27th 2007


4102 Comments


There isn't enough hate for the band in this review. :P

Totally pos'd

project86fan
November 27th 2007


26 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is a weak review. It is short and doesn't give an particular reason for the low rating. This is a nice easy listening pop/rock record, you don't buy it for virtuosity or grand lyrics.



Besides the over-the-top reviewer bias, there are also fundamental errors. The band didn't achieve immediate success, their first single was out for months and only played in Denver before it finally grudingly got picked up...



And that single was "Over My Head" not How to Save a Life... which was their 2nd single.

ohcleverhansyou
November 27th 2007


885 Comments


I didn't like "How to Save a Life" until I saw it in that Scrubs episode, quality episode. Scrubs also saved Audioslave's "Be Yourself" for me, which is one of my favorite songs. Some awkward sentences, but not enough to neg.

Pebster49
November 27th 2007


3023 Comments


This is a weak review. It is short and doesn't give an particular reason for the low rating. This is a nice easy listening pop/rock record, you don't buy it for virtuosity or grand lyrics.


so what do you buy it for, being shitty? If your going to have soft music, there better be steller lyrics to back it up. Anyone can make simple music with bad lyrics.This Message Edited On 11.27.07

astrel
November 30th 2007


2615 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0

Good review. I didn't like this album at all.

sEby146
February 10th 2010


178 Comments


I personally hate the singers voice. I just listened to Over My Head and it makes my ears bleed.

Waior
Contributing Reviewer
February 10th 2010


11682 Comments


You have very tender ears.

robertsona
Staff Reviewer
February 10th 2010


18360 Comments


waior a 4 cmon dude

Waior
Contributing Reviewer
February 10th 2010


11682 Comments


guilty pleasure with a suffocating amount of guilt

PurpleDino
May 24th 2011


3586 Comments


I havent heard the whole the album but the lyrics on the title track are good, I thought



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