This Beautiful Republic Even Heroes Need A Parachute
Artist Info:Discography Album length: 11 tracks: 38 minutes, 33 seconds Street Date: April 3, 2007
In 2002, a small band from Toledo, Ohio called Sanctus Real exploded onto the scene, and rapidly became as staple in Christian rock music.
Five years later, another band hailing from Toledo has emerged, and appears poised for similar success with their release
Even Heroes Need a Parachute. This Beautiful Republic may not have quite the same catchiness on their debut as
did Sanctus Real, but they still display serious talent.
The band is careful to craft an album that will appeal to many different audiences; "Going Under" is turning heads on rock radio,
while "Jesus to the World," despite its somewhat trite title and lyrics, is doing fairly well on Top 40 stations thanks to a likeable
sound comparable to some of Starfield's work. Singer Ben Olin's powerful vocals sound edgy on heavier songs, yet polished on the softer
ones. Another album highlight, "Black Box" has an eclectic mix of sounds that come together to create a fun rock song that should sound
There are very few weak points musically on the album; every song can hold its own and I never found myself reaching for the skip
button. Yet, perhaps only half of the songs stand out as truly excellent. The rest are all done well, but some feel slightly
overproduced, and after a few listens, can grow redundant. The album starts out so well with "Casting Off" and the standout track
"Going Under" that it sets a very high standard that isn't quite met by some of the other songs. Nevertheless, it's all great music
that's a cut above the standard.
Lyrically, the album is a cry for help, as its title might suggest. Olin's words are creative at times, a bit cliché at others,
but always honest, and the band's message is clear throughout, as in "Fears & Failures" ("Questions are not easy / when nothing can
satisfy / and life is more than these fears and failures / fame is just a lie"). They offer the hope of Christ to everyone in need,
from hobos to heathens to heroes.
Only a few years ago, ForeFront Records was home to many of the giants in Christian music including DC Talk, Audio Adrenaline, and
Bleach. ForeFront's decision to sign a band as skilled as This Beautiful Republic may be the first step toward recapturing their status
as one of Christian music's top record labels. The band will be a top contender for New Artist of the Year, and deservedly so - they show
signs of becoming a premier band in the very near future. Even Heroes Need a Parachute may develop a few small holes on the way
down, but still manages to pull off an impressive landing.
- PReview date: 3/15/07; Review date: 3/31/07, written by Spencer Priest
Record Label: Forefront Records
Album length: 11 tracks: 38 minutes, 33 seconds
Street Date: April 3, 2007
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