The Fray - Scars & Stories

Published Friday 30th March 2012
The Fray - Scars & Stories
The Fray - Scars & Stories

RATING 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 124216-19076
LABEL: Epic 88691935482

Reviewed by Tony Cummings

"We've been through a lot of stuff personally, and as band we're still together, and I think we like the idea of scars you know, because they're healed you know. They are not like wounds necessarily, but they're still kind of a road map of where you been, and sometimes kinda point to where you want to go." So said The Fray who, of course, everyone remembers for their huge international hit "How To Save A Life". Producer Brendan O'Brien (Bob Dylan, Pearl Jam) has brought his talents to bear on a set of songs wrenched from personal experience. For instance, "Heartbeat" - inspired by their trip to Rwanda - is everything we've come to expect from the Denver rockers and is as melodic and memorable a song as anything you will hear on the radio today. The chorus's latter half, in which lead singer Isaac Slade repeats, "'Cause if you love someone/You love them all the same," will stay in your mind for a long time. "Turn Me On" features a particularly groovy drum pattern from Ben Wysocki combined with a surprisingly danceable bass line while on "Rainy Zurich" guitarist Joe King takes the lead vocals. The Fray are never going to be a favourite with the critics and some of the sneering reviews you can read online for 'Scars & Stories' say far more about the reviewers' prejudices than they do about the intelligently executed pop rock offered here. Suffice to say that though this set doesn't contain another song of the classic status of "How To Save A Life" there is still much here to commend.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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