#2 - Best Of 2011
Posted December 26, 2011
By Kevin_McNeese, Staff Reviewer
After a return to true form on 2009's Hello Hurricane, Switchfoot is back with yet another smashing chapter in their storied history. Could this be their best album yet, eclipsing even Nothing Is Sound? I'm not sure, but I do know it's the closest they've come yet to even having that discussion.
On Vice Verses
, the drums and the bass take center stage driving forward a relentless energy backed by Jon Foreman's signature, passionate voice and in-depth lyrics that come alive with repeated listen. And much like their live performances, you get a sense that nothing was left behind in the studio. The band put their all into every song and the audio assault is a pure treasure to listen to.
There are so many fantastic songs on this album. "The War Inside" is one of the lyrical high points of the album and talks about our "low-fi killers" (pride and "I") that are within each of us, despite our race, age or location. Every line is beautifully crafted and designed. "Thrive" is low-key but you feel the angst when Jon sings "I wanna thrive, not just survive." "Restless," possibly one of the band's best songs they've ever crafted, starts soft and crescendos into a passionate creed. The song feels like an arena event, a play with multiple acts and a huge finale, with Jon rising to new emotion in his voice accompanied by an amazing guitar line. It's a song that I simply can't get enough of. And there's a reason "Dark Horses" is in the Top 5 on mainstream rock charts. It's simple an incredible rock anthem.
Vice Verses is just as good as Hello Hurricane, my top pick a few years back, and it's great to continue to witness the latest surge of this incredible band. Hopefully they keep riding this wave for years to come.
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