307. Comatose – Skillet
Skillet remains one of the consistent bands in Christian music, by being completely inconsistent. Ranging from garage tinged grunge to a more keyboard driven electronica and industrial leanings to anthem rock with string arrangement accompaniment, the band has changed with the times unlike any other. And on “Comatose” it works.
Many earlier fans were disappointed with the shirt from the heavier sound to the more commercial feel, but it appears to be a better fit overall. The songs are big, wall of sound anthems that are concert ready. The themes of despair and reconciliation run throughout the entire project. Loneliness, depression and juxtaposed against hope and grace. This tension works as a running theme quite well.
Musically bombastic and diverse, the band fuses fully orchestrated rock songs with distorted and crunching guitars with soft acoustic piano. The songs are all about the hooks in the choruses. You get the impression that the band want everyone to sing along in concert and them-like approach is used consistently throughout.
I have always wondered why “Those Night” wasn’t picked up by mainstream radio as it would sounded quite natural on a playlist of The Killers and All-American Rejects. Not that it sounds anything like those bands, just that it seems to work well within a similar format. The theme of friendship is repeated here.
The lead track, “Rebirthing,” is the best example of combining the classical string arrangement and heavy rock guitars while “The Last Night” is by far the most memorable and strongest lyrically. The vocal interplay between male and female work as the message of a prayer and reconciliation for the lost and hurting shares a similar interplay.
A strong record from a band that appears to have its stride.