Artist: Girl On Fire
Album: Not Broken
If you have been following the site since the beginning, you’ll know that I reviewed an EP called “Revenge” on which I was a little more than critical, but all in the best interest of the band. The band that I speak of is Girl On Fire out of Seattle. Back then, I would have described the band as the new school Linkin Park. However, with their debut full-length album, Not Broken they have more than impressed me and I’m so glad they found a sound that truly fits them. This album is everything you could want in a rock album and more. These guys have come into their own in more ways than one and I think many will agree that the change was for the better. The album’s debut single “The Takedown” could stand high atop the pedestal with the likes of many of the active rock hits from the past decade. “We are not afraid to bleed, awake the strength inside, shadows come to life! Get ready for the takedown!” This track is the band’s way of saying that they’ve come to far and been through too much to just give up now. This anthem screams resilience in the deadliest of ways. For the non-believers, they know you will eat your words when you hear what’s in store. But that’s just the beginning of the album. Let’s delve in to a few more tracks and see just what makes this album so impressive.
The first track I’d like to talk about is “Losing My Identity”. The title of the track should give you a good idea of the meaning behind the song. If it’s not so obvious to you, it’s about finding yourself when you’re trapped in the darkest, deepest corners of your mind. “Who am I, I’ve been crawling through the dark looking for the answers. Who am I, I’ve been buried in the dark losing all the chances. Breaking me down, see what’s left now. Who am I? I’m losing my identity.” We’ve all been in that state of mind where we start to question who are, what we’re here for and our purpose for living. This track is about escaping that mentality and finding your true worth.
The next track I’d like to talk about is called “Monster”. This track vocally really gives me that Chester Bennington feel to it, as I mentioned before, but it’s a perfect sound for this track. It could definitely serve as another single and is easily one of the best tracks on the album. The solo in it is absolutely astounding and the lyrics are moving and powerful. Definitely a go-to track if you’re not familiar with the band.
Next, we have “Automatic Hurt”, which is the shortest track on the album, but also one of the best. It has a slight industrial sound to it, instrumentally and is pretty upbeat. It’s sure to have you up out of your seat and belting out the lyrics. I think the thing that really brings this track together is the guitar work. The balance between the rhythm guitar, the bass guitar and lead all give this track a groovy sound and makes it a fun listen.
The second shortest song on the album, and also quite possibly the heaviest, is called “Break the Chains”. This track is about escaping a relationship that you know is bad for you, but somehow it keeps you reeled in. “Throwing away the key is my last vision”. It seems as though this track particularly speaks of a woman who has lied and deceived the singer. It’s the only track to feature screams, which are heard in the background and just hits you harder than you could ever dream. This track seems like it would kick some major ass live.
The final track I would like to talk about, also the title track, is “Not Broken”. We’re lead in by a piano intro and a pretty interesting drum beat. Then the track picks up in the chorus “I’m not broken, I’m alive. I been kicked down but I’ll survive. Never give up, never hide. I won’t go down without a fight. You can drag me down til I’m out of breath. You can rip my heart right out my chest. I’m not broken, I’m not broken.” This track is about being able to survive all that life throws at you. Whether it be heartbreak, deception, loss, or whatever the case may be, we all know that we’re stronger once we come out on the other side of it. With a strong will, you can move mountains and become better than they ever dreamed you could be. Don’t let the world get you down, no matter how hard things get.
You definitely won’t hear me complaining about this album feeling generic or forced. The album is everything the band wanted it to be and they have a reason to be proud of each and every track. Not Broken is an album that will be cranked to 11 on road trips, when days are feeling bleak and whenever you feel hopeless. The songs on this album will give you a reason to push forward, give you a light in the dark and give you inspiration where there was emptiness. Each and every lyric, lick and beat on this album have been carefully planned out and you can truly feel that throughout. If you’re still a non-believer, go pick yourself up a copy of Not Broken when it’s released on July 9th through Century Media and remember; In the words of the immortal Mitch Lucker, even when things look more grim than you think you can bear, music can and will get you through anything, I promise. This album definitely proves that.