RED "Release the Panic" Review
Posted March 29, 2013
With RED's 4th studio album, Release the Panic, RED have changed their sound quite drastically, even though they still rock hard. They teamed up with producer Howard Benson, who's worked on other records for Christian rock bands such as Five Score and Seven Years Ago by Relient k and Awake by Skillet.
Howard Benson seems to have done a few things to RED's sound. For one, he's made their songs alot shorter. There's only one song that clocks in the four minute range (not including the deluxe edition tracks)), which is somewhat of a rareity for RED. Most of the songs are in the 2-3 minute range. However, the quickness of the songs does not detract from the quality. They are still able to say what they need to say in the short amounts of time. The songs also include more synths and less strings. I can tell they're moving from the metal stuff to more mainstream hard rock stuff. The album is still however, very enjoyable.
The album opens with the hard hitting title track, which is my favorite song from the album. It has a slowly building drum and bass intro before the guitars come crashing in. I really enjoy the screams from Michael Barnes on the chorus, and there's some great guitar and drum work courtesy of Athony Armstrong and Joe Rickard. The first single "Perfect Life" is next. This is one of the more pop-oriented songs on the album, and I defintely seeing it doing well on radio. I love how the drums start the song off and really help the song crash in on the chorus. This is one song you're sure to get stuck in your head! "Die For You" is a dance-rock song with heavy guitars and a dance beat. This is another highlight off the album. "Damage" took a while to grow on me, but now I'm starting to enjoy the song, especially the main guitar riff. "Same Disease" is an enjoyable song, but not a stand out of the album. The first ballad on the record, "Hold Me Now" comes next, and is the best ballad on the album. It reminds me alot of "Not Alone" off their last record Until We Have Faces.
"If We Only" picks up the pace and sounds like an old school RED song. This one also took some time to grow on me, and now I really like it. The last three tracks are power ballads. "So Far Away" and "Glass House" are not bad songs, but probably my least favorites on the album. Album closer "The Moment We Come Alive" is very good, however, and I think it's a great album closer. It reminds of "The Best Is Yet To Come," also off Until We Have Faces
I do have the deluxe edition of Release the Panic, but it doesn't make the album way better or anything. The two original songs, "Love Will Leave A Mark" and "As You Go," are actually pretty good and I'd definitely reccomend getting those two songs. The remixes weren't necessary, and although I like the acoustic version of "Breathe Into Me," I think they could've done without the remixes.
Overall, I enjoyed Release the Panic very much. This is RED's best album to date, and I'm interested to see what they do if they continue this new sound. While diehard fans of their last 3 records might not enjoy it that much, hard rock fans that don't like the heavy, lots of screaming stuff RED has done in the past will enjoy this album. Pick up the album today! So far, it's my #1 Christian album of 2013!
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