27 albums, 165 tracks

Hard RockHeavy Metal



Apr 26, 2019

Gradually Progressing From Darkness To Light

Written by @Soulbyweekly from SoulByweekly  / 6 mins read

The American rock band Shinedown released their sixth studio album ATTENTION ATTENTION in May 2018. This is basically a concept album of overall fifty minutes that speaks of an individual who is haunted by negative emotions and is trying to overcome his sufferings in order to bring positivity in his life. The album has a total of fourteen tracks including a thirty-nine second intro called “THE ENTRANCE”. The album is a blend of a number of rock genres including hard rock, pop rock and some electronic music elements. The mood of the music including the genre changes significantly as the album progresses. The album received good ratings from the listeners and music critics. AllMusic rated the album 4 out of 5 stars and described it as “expertly crafted”. Moreover, Classic Rock magazine and the music community website Sputnikmusic both rated the album 4 out of 5 stars, while Rock ‘N’ Load rated it 10 out of 10. It got a decent overall rating of 75 out of 100 on Metacritic. The album also enjoyed top positions in many music charts, including US Billboard Top Hard Rock albums and Top Alternative albums. It was also featured in the music charts in various other countries like New Zealand, United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, Canada, Sweden and Czech Republic. The sound in this album is comparatively heavier than the previous album Threat To Survival. Some musical influence of Imagine Dragons could be observed in the album. The interesting concept and intriguing tracks with variation in rock and pop genres make this album likeable to the listeners, both musically and lyrically.

The ‘Devil’ Inside Our Brains

“DEVIL” is the second track of the album, and the first full length song just after the intro track. “DEVIL” is composed of pure hard rock and alternative rock elements. The music video of the song also includes the intro track at the beginning. Being at the beginning of the concept album, this song is mostly based on the negative themes. According to the front man of the band Brent Smith, “DEVIL” is about being afraid and terrified of own self and the world around us, because of so many differences in people, places and atmospheres that humans face and thus difficulties arise in every moment. The man, whom the artist is talking about, is ravaged with negative thoughts, the fear of living alone and is faced with difficult situations. The state of mind and fear is referred to as the devil. Heavy use of guitar riffs, piano, synths, percussions and strong vocal creams make it appealing to the listeners who like heavier music. Regarding the music, Loudwire describes it as “centered around a sliding guitar lick and off killer beat”, “backing choirs padding the atmosphere”, and “synth, piano and guitar textures that bring everything to a climax”. The music video is captivating enough to attract attention with vibrant colors, themes and a mood that goes very well with the track. The song was positioned at the top in US Billboard Mainstream Rock and got the 9th position in Billboard Hot Rock Songs in 2018. The song is also been included within the soundtrack of WWE 2K19 version.

A Song For His Bandmate Who Is Suffering From Clinical Depression

Get up is the eleventh track in the album, which has a pop music influence in it, rather than hard or alternative rock. Brent Smith basically wrote the lyrics while helping the Shinedown bassist Eric Bass to cope up with his problem of clinical depression, which he suffered from on a daily basis. To some extent, other than this, the song also reflects the artist’s own struggles. According to Genius, “GET UP” is the point where the person has seen the light after coming out of the darkness. This is the first stage towards positivity, and once the person goes through this stage, the world will become much brighter and hopeful. In this song, Brent urges to move ahead towards positivity despite of the problem one is going through. The track comes with a music video which illustrates a number of themes, including what mental sufferings might feel like- the feeling of being observed and judged by others all the time and the feeling of hopelessness, but gradually, it is possible to come out of this into the life one wants to live. It basically shows an woman whose husband was killed in the military and how she tries to overcome her grief. Regarding the music video, Brent said to The Huffington Post that they wanted to make the video uplifting and they did not want people to be ashamed of their sufferings. He said that one should not be defined by the failures, but by the fact that they don’t give up easily. Overall, this is one of the songs in the album that has the capability to influence the people with optimism, positivity and positive emotions.

We All Are Special In Our Own Ways

Being the twelfth track of the album just after “GET UP”, “SPECIAL” is more positive themed where it tries to advice and speak about the truth of life. This track is much softer and is more towards the pop side rather than hard rock music, with the use of soft piano tunes and acoustic guitars without any electric distortion sounds. It says that none of us are special, and we all suffer and often go through various struggles in life, and it is only us who can only get up and come out from these tough scenarios which are a part of our regular lives. This is the stage where the person has overcome their sufferings and dark stages, and has now begun to improve himself. It suggests on a catchy tune that we all are the same, go through difficult times but still try to keep going without losing hope. The lyric says, “You see life's too short to run it like a race/ So it's never gonna matter if you win first place/ 'Cause we're all the same”. The frontman Brent Smith said that the song is an example of how people are same on a lot of different levels, and remembering how to be a human being. Instead of putting others down, humans should think of how everyone can prosper together. He added that this is just about their opinions and they do not want people to lose their humanity or human connections. To me, this is one of the best songs in the album both lyrically and musically which inspires the people going through hard times with their strong opinions.

Mar 06, 2019

Shinedown’s ATTENTION ATTENTION Flips The Script On Hard Rock Banality

Written by @camjameson from Extraneous Routes  / 4 mins read

If you were born in the late-eighties or early-nineties, you’d have been alive long enough to remember the assault of Grunge & Hard Rock which ruled the Rock music airwaves at the time, including its evolution into the form of Alternative Rock during the later-nineties that saw Rap Rock & Butt Metal reach unprecedented levels of mainstream appeal; Suddenly, everyone wanted a chain-wallet, a soul patch & some JNCO’s to look as tough as possible – While sad for some, many were thankful when these genres were usurped by Emo, Electro Pop & Indie as the noughties went on, erasing every existence of these Hot Topic-adjacent bands from the market. The silence came, enveloping the industry in cheerful Folksy “HEY!” chants & stripping everyone of the brooding rage they all held inside – But then, right when you were least expecting it, Shinedown appeared with a new look, a new energy & a fierce attitude unlike any other.

Adapting, Creating, But Never Losing Their Sound

Back in their heyday, Shinedown were responsible for much of the industry’s emotional disruption, generating wild Southern Rock jams with Bluesy elements fused within Emo structures, capturing the heart & soul of the fringe-culture enthusiast at the time with songs like “Sound Of Madness” & “45,” even delving into covers with “Simple Man,” but they were always a bit too intense – & red-haired – to be taken seriously. ATTENTION ATTENTION takes this in a completely different direction, delivering a much more polished Hard Rock & Electronica sound with absolutely phenomenal production quality, attacking the senses with gigantic walls of sound & a theatricality that makes them more approachable by the mainstream listener whilst also maintaining their angsty emotional core.

Cohesive Concept Albums Are Back, Baby!

In addition to sounding absolutely beefy & cinematic, the compositions on Shinedown’s ATTENTION ATTENTION hold a common sonic theme amongst each other, carrying the listener through the record with an actual direction & purpose rather than simply being a collection of typical Hard Rock tunes – For example, “THE HUMAN RADIO” gives a brilliant account of how technology is driving our species towards its own destruction, which then carries over into other tracks like “DEVIL” & “EVOLVE” which hint at similar themes whilst also exploring how humanity has lost its way in other moral scenarios, encouraging the listener – & viewers considering the fantastic music videos which accompany these songs – to observe their own circumstances & break free of the technological prison we’ve become locked within.

Speaking Directly To Today’s Youth

Finally, Shinedown really up the ante by proving that they still have an affinity for social causes even at their age, the scraggily youngsters now parents & business-owners with responsibilities to take care of – Just as their earlier stuff centered on expressing oneself & honing up to being an outcast, tracks like “DARKSIDE” & “KILL YOUR CONSCIENCE” try to bring attention attention – pun intended – to mental instability & the nurturing of one’s own mental health, a hot-ticket topic in nearly every social circle today; Their sound may have grown up, but they’re still here to help confused teens through the most painful times in their lives & that’s something absolutely worth celebrating.

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Shinedown is an American rock band from Jacksonville, Florida formed by singer Brent Smith in 2001 after the dissolution of his previous band. Smith, still under contract with record label Atlantic Records, recruited the band's original lineup of Jasin Todd as guitarist, Brad Stewart on bass, and Barry Kerch on drums. Consistent for the first two album cycles, a few lineup changes followed in the late 2000s, eventually stabilizing with Smith and Kerch alongside Zach Myers on guitar and Eric Bass on bass. The group has released six studio albums: Leave a Whisper (2003), Us and Them (2005), The Sound of Madness (2008), Amaryllis (2012), Threat to Survival (2015), and Attention Attention (2018). Shinedown has sold more than ten million records worldwide, and has had 13 number one singles on the Billboard Mainstream Rock charts, securing a tie with Van Halen for the second most of all-time, behind Three Days Grace (14).
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