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Album Review
Senses Fail - The Fire Album Cover

Senses Fail - The Fire

Reviewed by
8.4
Senses Fail - The Fire
Record Label: Vagrant Records
Release Date: October 26, 2010
Senses Fail seems to be the band that has no middle ground with listeners (especially on this website). You're either completely sold with the band's often repetitive, cliche sound, or you think the band is a really bad display of post-hardcore thanks mostly to vocalist Buddy Nielsen. I've always sat on the former side of the fence finding Nielsen's vocals interesting more than irritating; pain-filled instead of painful to hear. With their last release, Life is Not a Waiting Room they had good intentions, but were overshadowed by the still wonderful Still Searching. With The Fire their newest release, they take the good intentions of LINAWR and the grand display of SS and mix it with the early intensity of Let it Enfold You to create perhaps not their best album to date, but at least their most mature and finely tuned release.

In the heavy department, this album blows their last two releases out of the proverbial water. Songs like "New Year's Eve", "Coward" and "Lifeboats" are some of the heaviest tracks the band has ever laid down on record, most notably is "Lifeboats" a song of raw emotion on a grand scale. Nielson's vocals have also improved greatly, especially in the screaming area. He's come a long way since the almost unbearable screams on LIEY. "Nero" is a good delivery of clean vocals, mixed with a catchy chorus that translates into one of the highlights of the album.

Lyrically, this album has really only one difference from previous attempts in the fact that along with the dark and depressing lyrical overcoat, there's a deeper layer of hope found within, like on songs such as the wonderful "The Fire" where Nielson optimistically states "It's okay to feel lost/It just means you're alive." In fact, on previous attempts where Nielson talks about pure hopelessness, here he juggles between a dark and light tone, desperately trying to find meaning in his life. "Landslide" is a perfect example of this theme, where Nielson claims "I was born into a landslide/Now my heart's a perfect stone" and later contains the defining lyric "I've got to stop living like a tornado/Uprooting everything that gets too close before its roots get to grow". Say what you will about the creativity of such lyrics, but the passion behind the delivery is something to be experienced.

From a musical standpoint, nothing has changed or developed. This is not a bad thing by a long shot. The band's consistency in sound helps root them into a more comfort zone, which should please fans greatly. Make no mistake, though, this album will not win over new fans. If you hated Senses Fail before, odds are you'll still hate them after listening to The Fire. Even fans of their EP From the Depths of Dreams only may not find much appealing about this album. As for the rest of us, this an exceptional release that works far better than its predecessor because of its successful mashing of all their earlier LPs into one heavy and catchy release. Grade: B+

Solid TracksThe Fire, Lifeboats, Landslide

Recommended If You LikeSenses Fail... I mean, really now.

Senses Fail's Myspace
Buy It
This review is a user submitted review from Corey Hoffy. You can see all of Corey Hoffy's submitted reviews here.
 
Displaying posts 1 - 10 of 10
02:25 PM on 10/31/10
#2
j1887m
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Love this album. Good review
02:50 PM on 10/31/10
#3
BitterShweet
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Recommended If You Like:
Senses Fail...I mean, really now.

omg <3333333
03:45 PM on 10/31/10
#4
Psib
When I get home I'll get high alone
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kinda biased review, but i liked it and i love senses fail
05:08 PM on 10/31/10
#5
roche
You think a pirate lives in there?
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I've always found myself to be a middle ground Senses Fail listener. Still Searching impressed me, but every other release since then has only contained one or two standout tracks. I find their lack of growth a little discouraging as each release is comprised of tracks that sound more like B-sides from the last.
05:46 PM on 10/31/10
#6
suicidalmoose
Lindsay let me kiss your forehead!
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I've always found myself to be a middle ground Senses Fail listener. Still Searching impressed me, but every other release since then has only contained one or two standout tracks. I find their lack of growth a little discouraging as each release is comprised of tracks that sound more like B-sides from the last.
Agree in everything you've just said.

I have always wondered why there seems to be such a difference on the sound itself between Still Searching from LINAWR and The Fire. It looks like the quality of the sound has changed for worse or something. I don't know if it's the production or whatever. The sound just isn't so clear :|

Nice review anyway, I think the essentials have been said.
01:13 PM on 11/01/10
#7
Corey Hoffy
I refuse to spend life on my knees
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kinda biased review, but i liked it and i love senses fail
I completely agree. When I originally wrote it, it was extremely biased. I tried to write it as objectively as possible the second time through.
01:15 PM on 11/01/10
#8
Corey Hoffy
I refuse to spend life on my knees
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I've always found myself to be a middle ground Senses Fail listener. Still Searching impressed me, but every other release since then has only contained one or two standout tracks. I find their lack of growth a little discouraging as each release is comprised of tracks that sound more like B-sides from the last.
Interesting point of view. I'd never actually considered that. Thanks for the feedback.
04:16 PM on 11/19/10
#9
BrandonDrake24
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Great band. Miss the old material.

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