by David Hawkins
Few bands in the rock genre have the staying power of Skillet. The band began with their self-titled debut album in 1996 and have been going ever since. After several changes in both line up and style.
Unleashed marks the band’s tenth album release. This album brings both new and old songs. Luke Whiteaker, sophomore, says that the fourth track “I Want To Live” reminds him of older albums. This song has a violin-led intro that is a callback to their 2006 release, Comatose. On the other end “Feel Invincible” opens up the album with some techno elements. “Feel Invincible” was Grace Vandegrift’s favorite track of the album. Vandegrift described this song as having an “industrial metal sound with the heavy drums and guitars.”
One of the songs on this album with the most mixed reception was “Stars”. Jose Gutierrez criticized this song due to him not enjoying soft songs. He enjoys harder rock songs such as “The Resistance” and “Feel Invincible.”
With this album, Skillet also introduced newer sounds which can be found in songs like “Lions”, “Famous”, and “Watching for Comets.” My favorite of these three songs was “Watching for Comets” because it can be interpreted in so many ways. I see it as a story of lost love, a chance that could have been but passed you by. Grace Vandegrift says, “there’s someone or something that gets you through the day. When you find it, it’s like everything has color. Never let it go.”
She also points out that “Watching for Comets” is probably the most mellow song on this album. That is one of my favorite things about this album. It is able to blend sounds and switch between tones without losing that feeling of all of these songs tying together. When I listen to Unleashed I listen to it in the tracklisting’s order. All of the songs fit together under the overall theme of being empowered and living for more throughout all struggles.
I recommend this album to anyone. It has both rock songs and pop songs. No matter what music you are into I am sure there will be a song that you can connect with. It may be “Lions”, a song about strength. Or it may be “Out of Hell”, a song about looking for help in your darkest moments.
This tenth album shows us why Skillet has lasted and I definitely anticipate their next project.