A NOTABLE 7TH-OR-HIGHER RELEASE 2006 Award Winner!
Disciple (Scars Remain).
This is, without question, Skillet’s finest album to date [and it still is]. As great as their previous album Collide was (and it was a Best Sixth Release Nominee in our ’05 Awards), Skillet’s Comatose far surpasses it on every level. They lay down even more excellent Hard Rock, this time adding some sweeping orchestration underneath it to heighten the drama. Frontman/bassist John Cooper’s vocal rhythm is impeccably timed, and his wife and fellow bandmember Korey Cooper finally makes a prolonged vocal appearance again, as well. In short, Comatose is an excellent album.
“Rebirthing” kicks off the CD with big, epic-sounding orchestration, the Hard Rock sliding in over the top. This track is a great opener, as it showcases all of Skillet’s new-and-improved elements.
“The Last Night” begins with keyboards, the rest of the band jumping in a moment later. Its lyrics deal with the contemplation of suicide, with John and Korey singing the conversation. This track is powerful, and it gave us goosebumps.
“Yours To Hold” is actually Rock (not Hard Rock). Its lyrics describe someone trying to help, and be there for, a friend or potential love.
“Better Than Drugs” gets right back to the Hard Rock.
“Comatose” is another perfect Hard Rock track— everything about it (vocals, lyrics, music, and rhythm) draws you in.
“The Older I Get” is another Rock (not Hard Rock) track. It describes a relationship that was broken a long time ago, and the message is to not let that happen, or if it already has, to try and reconcile it.
“Those Nights” is an upbeat Hard-Edged Rock track, which shows how simply having friendships with people may in fact save someone’s life.
“Falling Inside The Black” moves back to dark, appealing, absolutely perfect Hard Rock.
“Say Goodbye” is emotional Rock, describing friends that, while still friends, are going their separate ways.
“Whispers In The Dark” moves back once more to the appealing Hard Rock, with hope-giving lyrics.
Finally, “Looking For Angels” features a new element— while the chorus is sung, the verses are lowly and darkly spoken. This song lyrically reveals how broken everything is, and what we need to do to fix it.
The Deluxe Edition includes 1 totally new track and 5 acoustic-version tracks on the CD, some free stuff for your cell phone, and a DVD.
On the CD, the totally new “Live Free Or Let Me Die” is yet another great Hard Rock track with firm lyrics.
The 5 acoustic-version tracks have all-new vocals and actually only somewhat-acoustic music. There are a neat mix of acoustic and electric elements in each, and all are great:
“Rebirthing” is rhythmic, with layered acoustic guitars, an electric bass in the background, and stripped-down synths. “Yours To Hold” is emotional and just about as good as the original; along with the layered vocals, acoustic guitar(s), electric bass, percussion, piano, and synths, there’s a hint of an electric guitar at one point, too. This is a very full sound for an acoustic song, and it’s great. “The Older I Get” features an electric guitar playing the main fill in the background, an electric bass, rhythmic acoustic guitar(s), and percussion. Again, this is just about as good as the original. “Whispers In The Dark” uses an electric bass and very cool, rhythmic and layered acoustic guitars. Finally, “Say Goodbye” uses lots of vocal layers, emotional piano and synths, a background acoustic guitar and a little percussion, and a touch of electric guitar for a lead fill.
The DVD contains Skillet’s 3 Comatose-track music videos (“Rebirthing”, “Whispers In The Dark”, and “Looking For Angels”); as well as a little featurette called “Behind The Scenes”, which is a short compilation of making-of-the-album clips set to “The Older I Get”. While only as long as that song, it’s worth it, as most of the clips are fairly hilarious.
In all, this excellent record is definitely worthy of a Notable 7th-or-Higher Release Award.