Life Starts Now – Three Days Grace

One early morning in 2003 while heading home from work in a company cab, a colleague introduced me to the music of Three Days Grace via a couple of mp3s on a mixed cd. Soon I became a casual fan of the band while watching their music videos to their hit songs like Home & Just Like You. That casual fan status would continue however I must admit that some of their songs are just fabulous like the anti-suicide / child molestation single Never Too Late. I’ve got all their albums including the one reviewed here in this post, Life Starts Now.

This is the 3rd album of the Norwood, Ontario quartet, released on September 22, 2009. It is the band’s second album produced by Howard Benson. After being on the road for five years with Three Days Grace, bassist Brad Walst stated, “We all came home and got a hard dose of life,” which the band then used to create a more “musically in-depth and personal album”. He describes Life Starts Now as a record about “confronting life and how fragile it can be”. Opening track Bitter Taste is evidence hinting that the band haven’t changed too much from their previous releases – a simple riff starts the song, and singer Adam Grontier follows with a typical verse and chorus structure and delivers a hook.

In a similar vein but with a lot more radio friendly tune is Break, the first single off the track, which peaked at #1 on the Billboard Rock Charts. Catchy guitar riffs and a thumping drum beat sets this song apart. It’s about breaking free from the situation that you find yourself in and one you do not like. World So Cold is next; a typical 3DG song about a bitter & unfriendly world after a heartbreak. Lost In You is probably going to be a single for the reasons that it’s radio friendly, appeals to multiple listeners, is the obligatory, catchy song of affection, and has a certain degree of repeated listenability. The song sounds a lot like Default to me. We get back to harder riffs in The Good Life.

No More is a good song and should have been released as a single; lyrically it’s a vulnerable look at living in fear and stating that its not the kind of living we should live. The piano led Last To Know is a ballad about broken love and is a moving song. Someone Who Cares is a song about the desperate longing for people to care about each other in a bleak looking world. I really like Neil Sanderson’s Freese-worthy drum performances throughout this album and on this track he lays down a strong groove. The eerie sounding Bully has “creeping-up-behind-you” kind of vibe that cunningly carves out a perfect setting with Grontier’s distorted vocals for the verses. Without You is the protagonist wondering what life would be without the person he is singing about. Walst’s best work on the bass comes in Going Down,  and we end the album with the title track Life Starts Now – which is about starting afresh and removing all the negativity. Guitarist Barry Stock who does a bang up job all over the cd, pays homage to the Jerry Cantrell / Alice In Chains sound in his rhythm guitar and lead breaks. Overall a very solid album although it doesn’t beat it’s predecessor.

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