Skillet Skillet has always been a band of experimentation. If you listened to their debut, Alien Youth, Collide, and Comatose side by side, it would be hard to identify them all as by the same artist. Skillet...
An expected non-progression | Posted February-22-2010
Skillet has always been a band of experimentation. If you listened to their debut, Alien Youth, Collide, and Comatose side by side, it would be hard to identify them all as by the same artist. Skillet has always been a band that changed and kept fans guessing... okay not true... Skillet has always up until now kept their fans guessing.
Skillet's lead-off singles ("Hero" to Christian radio and "Monster" to secular radio) demonstrated basically what the entire album turned out to become. "Hero" maintained the "Comatose" feel of heavy guitar riffs, strong lead male vocals, and a harsh female voice. "Monster" seemed like a fusion of "Collide" and "Comatose," with a slightly more "grungy" feel to it. "Awake" pretty much stays like that for the entire album, breaking only for slight variances from past projects (such as the intro to "Never Surrender")
Skillet demonstrates strong lyrical content as always, demonstrating why they are as popular now as ever... except for two HUGE stumbles. The greatest is their song "It's Not Me, It's You." It seems as if Skillet is trying to get younger teens to enjoy their music. The lyrics are cheesy at best and horrible at worst. While this song is an excellent concert song and a real adrenaline- boost, we all know Skillet can do much better. A smaller, but still annoying "mistake" is the bridge of "Forgiven." It says "I get down on my knees/Feel your love wash over me." Sound familiar? It is to any old-school Skillet fan. The bridge of one of my favorite Skillet songs ever - "One Real Thing" off of their "Alien Youth" project - says "I get down on my knees and I feel your love wash over me." Again, Skillet can do much better.
Now I've spent this entire review beating on "Awake." Yet, I still cannot get enough of this CD. Yes it's cheesy at times, yes it's like a carbon copy of "Comatose" with a little "Collide" thrown in, but that combination is what made Skillet popular. And that is the Skillet we all love. Skillet has encountered a winning formula. Their blend of violins and electronic rock and hard rock is incredible and a joy to listen to. As Skillet becomes a mainstream artist, it does make sense that they release an album similar to their previous efforts to let new fans know exactly who they are. And they do a tremendous job. I just hope they are able to change it up a little bit in the next album.
So... bottom line: buy it unless you hated "Comatose." This album is a must have for any Skillet fan, hard rock fan, and is also a great ministry tool (imagine giving a friend "Awake" - a fairly mainstream CD.... then giving them "Alien Youth..." an almost hard-rock worship CD...)... so an excellent CD, Skillet. Just please surprise me next time :D