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The Script - The Script (COMEBACK!!! Album Review)(Part 1 of 2)PhenomentalOne I'm back, yet again, for real. And you still won't care.
So, I thought to myself - how should I celebrate my return? And the answer was loud and clear - REVIEW AN ALBUM!!! (which, obviously, no one has heard.)
I've had a pretty solid relationship with The Script, Irish pop rock band formed in Dublin, consisting of frontman and keyboardist Danny O' Donoghue, guitarist Mark Sheehan and drummer Glen Power. They've notched a few hits in the U.S. and have a knack for great songwriting and catchy melodies. But all of that came tumbling down in 2017 (which, well, we'll talk about it in some other post, maybe) and now I really don't know what to do with them. So I decided to review their entire discography (which, yes, I will do), starting with this - their self-titled, major label debut.
Now before I jump into it, there's still a question left - what was my first exposure to the band? Well, Hall Of Fame. Yeah, pretty generic and obvious choice, right? I know. But here's the thing - I didn't exactly have this choice. It just played at my school, I asked someone which song was playing, I went home and searched it, and here we are. And one more thing, this is going to be a track-by-track review. So hop on, if you want to.
1. We Cry
The album starts off with their debut single and wow, it did set up their standards pretty well. The slick guitar melody, the sharp drumming, some pretty strings and violins, the occasional peeps of the bright piano and an ACTUALLY DISTINGUISHABLE BASSLINE (trust me, you'll be having a hard time identifying those in this album, let alone separating them), you know they've got some amazing producers behind them. And as for the lyrics, the verses describe the lives of 3 people, namely Jenny, John and Mary, pressured by society to do something good (and even ambitious to do so) and yet unable to, because of the same society. Nothing much complex but definitely something to think about. And the 3rd verse also features Mark sing-rapping, so there. My only problem with the lyrics would be that the 'girl/world' rhyme is used a little too much. But other than that, its a fantastic opener and really sets the tone of what's to come. (8/10)
2. Before the Worst
Now here's a single that's underrated, even by the band's standards. The production here's fantastic - a solid and moody piano chord progression, some great percussion, touches of the acoustic guitar and then the AWESOME bridge. I still don't get why isn't this more popular in the fanbase. And the answer comes within me. This song takes a long time to really grow on you, in terms of instrumentals. The lyrics describe a lover trying to piece up the things that went wrong in his relationship and trying to relive its memories and make his beloved do the same, before both of them try to move on. It's the kind of desperation that really wouldn't keep the relationship alive, but its also kinda beautiful and far more mature than most guys right now would do. So yeah, great song and I hope that the fans remember this if they look back at the band's history. (9/10)
3. Talk You Down
Of all the songs on this album, this is probably the one that shrunk on me the most. As such, how does it hold for me in the present? Well, the instrumentation's alright, but that's about it. There really isn't any edge to set it apart. But what really catches me off-guard is Danny's change to falsetto at the end of the chorus. And he pulls it off so well! I mean, there really isn't any denial that Danny O' Donoghue is a great singer - he's probably one of the main reasons why The Script became so popular in the first place. And as for the lyrics, well, it almost fits the same vein as the previous song, except now that the break-up is being potrayed as a firefighter situation - which it really isn't. So, that's that. (7/10)
4. The Man Who Can't Be Moved
Oh man, this will be really hard to talk about. See, I've tried to expand my horizon across multiple genres. I've listened to R&B (my personal favourite), emo, alternative rock, pop punk, synthpop, hip-hop, jazz, funk, country rap, EDM, very little metal and so much more; not enough to consider myself as a master of any of these, but enough to know what I'm dealing with every time I pick up a new record. So what if I told you that a pop rock song of all things is my most favourite song, OF ALL TIME?!
Yes, this is almost FLAWLESS in my eyes. The acoustic guitar tabs, the slow-paced drumming, the harmonious strings, the sharp percussion and ESPECIALLY Danny's singing, which almost covers all ranges he's ever sung in. And then comes the bridge, where the electric and bass guitars are introduced, giving the song a new kind of melancholy, before exploding into a final chorus with multi-tracked vocals and DAMN, it's so potent.
But if you've heard the song, you know that the production isn't the main reason why this song is outstanding. It's the lyrics, telling the story of a lover visiting the place he and his beloved first met, and vowing to stay there until she comes back. He is visited by policemen, people talk about him, he's famous, but he doesn't want any of it if it can't win back his girl for him. And you get why this story is only in a song and probably not in real life. Society would laugh at such people and tell them to move on, but that's what gives the song its earnestness and sincerity and it really makes the line "I'm the man who can't be moved", sung at the end of the bridge, all the more meaningful if you think about it.
So yeah, outstanding, great, excellent, unreal, no words can describe this song, for me at least. (11/10)
So remember me talking about this band notching a few hits in the US? Yeah, this is one of them, their highest-peaking song on the Hot 100 till date. And how is it?
Well, the production is all kinds of tense, with the acoustic guitar strumming in the intro (and post-chorus), which segues into screeches of the electric guitar, some REALLY FAINT piano and some subdued bass. The drumming is pretty stiff here, sometimes even getting militant. And that's not even touching the chorus, with the synth reverbs and multi-tracked vocals from all members of the band (Did I mention that all members of this band are multi-instrumentalists?).
And what about the lyrics? Well, it's kind of a generic breakup song, where Danny states that both lovers don't feel the exact sadness from a breakup. One feels it more than the other. One moves on faster than the other. And psychologically, that might be true. And yet, it still has some clever lines ("They say bad things happen for a reason, but no wise words are gonna stop the bleeding"; "You took the suitcase, I took the blame"). And that's also one reason why this band will never completely self-destruct - the songwriting is always on point (and it has to be). So yes, this works out very well. (9/10)
Next part of the review will hopefully come out under this week. I'm sure this much is enough to show how I've been doing. Thanks for your time.
5. Talk You Down
4. We Cry
2. Before the Worst
1. The Man Who Can't be Moved
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