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I have waited for this album for months now, I adored his first album so lets see if this one can live up to expectations:
Who is Daughtry?
Formed by Chris Daughtry, the band Daughtry is formed by 5 members. Lead singer Chris Daughtry rose to fame on the fifth season of American Idol, and most famous for only coming fourth, and being beaten by someone who wasn't very good. The rest of the band consists of two guitarists, Josh Steely and Brian Craddock, Bass player Josh Paul and drummer Joey Barnes:
Track 1- You Don't Belong
The first song on the album starts off with quite a heavy sound, but then Daughtry's voice joins in and it becomes a bit softer until the chorus. This is not my usual kind of music, but of course Daughtry can sing anything and make me love it, this is another song that after a few listens I have fallen in love with. I have to say I can't hear myself listening to it a lot, I know there are lot of better and more listenable songs on the album, however this is great song.
Chris Daughtry's vocals are fantastic as always, I don't think I've ever heard him sing off key or anything like that, his voice is just fantastic, this song does have a bit of a Nickelback feel who are definitely and influence on Daughtry's music. This song is very good, very strong, it makes you listen right from the get go and it's well placed at the start of the album, it starts things off with a bang and it really is a great start to what I hope is going to be a great album.
Rating: 8/10 (A fantastic track, not as listenable for me as some of the others on the album however)
Track 2- No Surprise
This is the song that I first heard from this album, I was planning on buying it anyway, but this track put it in stone for me. It's fantastic. I first heard Daughtry perform it on American Idol's latest series of the show, it's such a fantastic catchy song and I think it's one of the best produced songs on the album. Daughtry's voice sounds fantastic and it's just a brilliant song.
The song has amazing lyrics, it's one of the things that drew me to the song in the first place, it has a more poppy feel than the previous track, the guitars are heavy and Daughtry's voice is strong, but it doesn't have the edge that the previous track seems to have. This is more my kind of music however, 'soft rock' I believe the appropriate name for this type of music. Daughtry managed to do 'soft rock' so well, his voice always works better with heavy but not too heavy guitars in the background and fantastic and almost love song, song. This is his niche in my opinion and this is the sort of music that really makes him shine.
I adore this track, it really is truly one of the best that I've heard from this band, he manages to create quite a catchy soft ballad type of song, however at the same time, it's very rocky and you won't find yourself turning over the radio station when this comes on. It apparently was co-written by the brilliant Chad Kroger, so that is where the Nickelback feel to this song comes in.
Rating: 10/10 (Just perfection, one of my favourites from this amazing artist)
Track 3- Every Time You Turn Around
Like quite a few of Daughtry's tracks the song starts off very heavy, but then becomes a bit more quiter to make room for Daughtry's very rocky and edgy voice which sounds just amazing in this track. At the moment after a few listens of this song, I do love the song, it does have it's weaknesses however, there are a few times where some voice goes 'woo hoo' and that just ruins it for me, it's a rock album not some little poppy album.
Chris's voice is very good, he has produced another brilliant and diverse track which really sounds very good, especially on a great pair of speakers, turn up your stereo for this song, it'll make your house shake, but you'll still find yourself bobbing your head along with it. A fantastically sung track and is brilliantly accompanied by very talented musicians.
Rating: 8/10 (A fantastic track, there are better on the album however so that is why it might seem like a lower rate)
Track 4- Life After You
Unlike the previous track this one starts off almost acoustically sounding, and then Chris's voice joins in and you can tell automatically that it's going to be a very good song from this brilliant band. The chorus is quite heavy however at the same time you still can find yourself singing along to the chorus.
I did have this song on repeat for 8 times according to my Itunes account, and the chorus does drag a little after time and it does become slightly annoying and almost repatetive sounding, but other than that it really is a fantastic song sung beautifully by Chris. It shows just how diverse this album is, the first track was very heavy, and then this track is slower, but at the same time you still have the rock sound running along the base. Brilliant.
Rating: 8/10 (It did get quite annoying after lots of repeating the song, but it is really a good song)
Track 5- What I Meant To Say
This one does sound very familiar, I think another song from Daughtry's debut album sounds very familiar to this. It's again a lot more upbeat than the previous song and the rockiness is back and runs all over the song. Chris's voice is brilliant as always, he doesn't seem to command this song as he does the others though, I think maybe they played the music a little too heavy, it could have been pulled back and made Chris more promenant.
It is probably the weakest on the album so far, but it's still a very enjoyable track to listen to. It's brilliantly put together, but in my opinion it over powers Chris's voice a little, it doesn't take anything away from the enjoyment for me, but I think it could annoy some people.
Rating: 6/10 (A good song, but probably the weakest on the album, the least memorable)
Track 6- Open Up Your Eyes
It starts off quite slow sounding, and then the sound that I always associate with Daughtry, the guitar strings ringing out quite loudly. The first verse is not that brilliant however, it's almost boring which doesn't usually come with Daughtry, however in the chorus, everything builds up and it becomes a lot louder and lot more emotion is put into the lyrics and his singing becomes a lot more raw.
Of course however that's just for the chorus, the verse comes back again and it just doesn't do much for me at all. His voice is not as strong in the verse that it is in the chorus and it doesn't really make the song stick in your mind. I think however, this track is a definite grower and I think in time I'll look back on this review and go, why the hell did I say I thought the verse was weak, it's fantastic. For that, I'm giving it a little higher rate than I think it deserves at the moment, because I'm sure I'll love it down the line.
Rating: 7/10 (A good song, nothing special, but it seems like a grower)
Track 7- September
This is the song that seemed to be the most talked about before it was released. I'm not sure why even before anyone had heard it, they were talking about it but they were really right. I have recently just written another music review, and in there have moaned about all of the little unnecessary extras that, that particular artist had included in their songs. Daughtry has included things like wind chimes, but it just seems to work with this song.
This song was the sort of song that made me fall in love with his debut album, with songs like Over You and Used To, he managed to draw me in and I think before David Cook's album it was my most overplayed album. This song is just fantastic, it's very soft, I don't think you could really even call it rock as it doesn't have the edge that you usually get with Daughtry until part way through when they bring in the heavy drums, it works fantastic and brings a little bit more rock into the song, however it still stays almost a ballad, it's really just a very nice song.
The lyrics stick out for me with this song, you will find yourself singing along to the chorus, they are so nice and are just perfect for this song. The guitar riff that they have used is fantastic as well, I'm sure I'll be attempting to learn it down the line.
Rating: 9/10 (The best song on the album so far, just fantastic)
Track 8- Ghost of Me
I love the beginning to this track, very heavy but it does have quite an eery feel to it. It's perfectly sung by Chris Daughtry, again with no mistakes to his voice, it always sounds raw and powerful and really makes this song stand out from the rest. It's not the best on the album, I'm afraid I think so far that No Surprise and September take those awards, however it is a brilliantly put together song.
I seriously think the best thing to ever happen to Daughtry was NOT winning American Idol. He came fourth and was beaten by probably the worst winner in Idol history Taylor Hicks. I've not heard anything of him since and would not go looking for it. The reason why I say that the best thing to happen to him was him not winning was because he wouldn't have made songs like these, they are commercialized and controlled, you still have Simon Fuller in the credits of quiet a lot of the songs, however they are not as controlled as say Jordin Sparks whose songs just don't suit her.
This song is fantastic, very catchy and works so well with a brilliant pair of speakers, especially in the car. Unfortunately my speakers in my car are pretty awful so I'm sticking to listening to it at home.
Rating: 8/10 (An amazing and powerful song, one of the best on the album)
Track 9- Learn My Lesson
Another very strong track from this brilliant band, this sounds a lot like the style he did with his debut album, it seems to have a lot more about it thought than this sort of song did on the previous album. It's a lot more raw and a lot more rocky and just seems to work fantastically well with Chris's voice and the rest of the bands abilities.
The song is quite slow, it's more of a ballad than a rock song, but it seems to work fantastically on the album and it just seems to fit with Chris's voice which is very strong in this track and it just seems to get better and better with each track I hear. Even though he may sound a little like Kroger, his voice is still very unique, he has amazing pipes and there will be no doubting that it's him singing something.
Rating: 9/10 (A very strong song, beautifully sung by the brilliant Chris)
Track 10- Supernatural
This is not really usually my kind of music but I have to say I adore this song. It really is very catchy and Daughtry's voice is just brilliant, very strong and very powerful. I love the lyrics and you will probably find yourself singing them down the line, however the biggest problem with this song, is you'll probably find yourself singing the lyrics, but not remembering where the lyrics come from. It's a brilliant song, but not as memorable as I think it could have been.
A very strong track however, Daughtry's voice carries it and I think it's very well produced, the musicians really work well with Daughtry's voice and they hardly ever are able to out power his very strong voice. Josh Steely gets in some lovely little riffs during this track, it is a very good song and one that I would recommend to everyone, however I'm not sure that I'll remember it in a few years time.
Rating: 8/10 (A fantastic track, but could be a lot more memorable)
Track 11- Tennessee Line
This song goes back to Chris Daughtry's roots, it's got a bit of a country feel to it, without being annoyingly 'strong' country. It still has the rock feel to it, but Daughtry's voice shines through, when he does more acoustic songs, his voice really does seem to shine, it becomes a lot more rawer as he can't hide behind the heavy guitars. The backing vocals are a really nice addition as well.
This is probably one of the best tracks on the album, again due to Daughtry's voice. It's so raw and powerful and the whole song just seems to suit his voice. They have kept it slow and have not added anything that is not necessary to the song. It's brilliantly produced and is one of the strongest tracks on the album and one I must have passed over on my first listen as I didn't realise that there was a song like this on the album. Just brilliant and really beautiful. Everything works so well together. The ending is a little bit of an annoyance but you can ignore that bit, just a little too country for me.
Rating: 9/10 (A gorgeous song, one of my favourites from Daughtry)
Track 12- Call Your Name
It sounds like another slow track, a gorgeous acoustic intro with Daughtry's voice shining through again, if it's possible his voice is stronger in this song as it is in the rest of it. We even get to hear a bit of Chris using his falsetto which is always nice to hear. The song pretty much stays just almost acoustic throughout and it is just beautiful. I'm now kicking myself for giving such high rates to previous songs, this is one of the best on the album.
It won't be everyone's cup of tea, the reason why I love Daughtry is he is very diverse and gives us songs that we comes to expect from the likes of Nickelback however brings in his own brand of rock as well with tracks like this and Tennessee Line which are still rock, but are just so soft and sweet at the same time. This in my opinion works the best for Daughtry's voice, it's a lot rawer and on show more, and it just seems to work. Steely provides us with another brilliant riff which works fantastic with the song.
10/10 (An absolute fantastic track one of the best on the album)
I had this pre-ordered from the moment that Play.com had it available, it was however a present for my birthday, as a family member struggled to get me anything, so I said just give me the cash for this, I had to wait two days before I could open up this CD and listen to it, but it was worth the wait.
There are no weak songs on the album, some of the songs are not as good as others but I would not call them weak and all of them, I'll willingly play over and over again. It's such a nice album; the songs are all strong and all listenable. It's been quite a long time between his debut album and this one, but it was worth the wait. I loved his debut album, I know a lot of people didn't, saying it wasn't original enough, but he has his own style and I love his debut album and now this one.
Is this album as good as his debut album? I think yes it is, there is a lot more diversity here on this album compared to his debut album. I think he concentrated too much on the Nickelback sound in his self titled album, however in Leave This Town; he has stuck to his own sound and has created something just amazing, something really powerful and something well worth the money that you pay for it.
Okay, this is always a sore point when it comes to Daughtry, he was really the first 'real' rocker to go onto American Idol, I know they had Bo Bice and Constantine the previous year but they weren't really rock, they were more poppy than anything, but Daughtry blew everything out of the water and he produced some amazing songs and really made me listen. I think I had his first album on pre-order for months before it came out and I was pretty much blind to what would be on there; however I had faith that he would deliver and he did.
He may have comparisons to other bands out there, but his voice is very unique and the songs he produces are just as unique as well, they stand out, mainly because of his power house vocals. They may not be the most original band, but boy are they brilliant.
Chris Daughtry is the guy that 'makes' this band. Without him there wouldn't even be a band, yes the rest of the guys are great musicians but without Chris's pipes then this band would 'suck'. His voice is not the most unique voice that you'll ever here, he does sound quite a bit like Chad Kroger from Nickelback, however, he maybe, just maybe might even be better than Mr Kroger himself. He manages to project his voice like no other singer, his range is just amazing and with his pipes, he towers of the brilliance of the rest of his band and becomes just even more fantastic.
I love Daughtry's lyrics, he's a huge fan of clichés and talking about pretty little rainbows (I'm exaggerating here, a bit) but it just seems to work.
With songs like No Surprise he delivers some amazing lyrics, he's talking about letting his feelings out due to the fact that he's finally realised that his relationship ending was no real surprise:
"It came out like a river once I let it out, I thought I wouldn't know how, held onto it forever just pushing it down, felt so good to let go of it now"
Some amazing lyrics there, but I think the one that really is the most talked about for beautiful lyrics is September, even more the song was actually released, people were talking about how beautiful the lyrics sounded and how they imagined Daughtry would sing it.
"Of all the things I still remember, summers never looked the same, the years go by and time just seems to fly by but the memories remain, in the middle of September, we'd still play out in the rain, nothing to lose but everything to gain, reflecting on how it could have been, it was worth it in the end"
With Daughtry, you can't help but find the automatic comparison with Chad Kroger. He's obviously an Idol of Chris and it's where a lot of his music stems from, Kroger even co-wrote No Surprise the hit of the album, however I can be pretty sure that Daughtry will never write a song called 'Animals' which talks about sneaking a girl out of her house, driving somewhere and getting busy and acting like their animals.
Daughtry has a more clean sense about him, I think you could compare some of his music to Jon Bon Jovi, whom I'm not a huge fan of, and I think Daughtry's music blows his out of the water, but there is a little comparison there. Daughtry may not be the most original band out there, but boy do they produce some amazing tracks all of which are worth listening to.
_Leave This Town_
The album is all about leaving a town and moving to another town in search of something else and something better, something I'm sure a lot of us can relate to. The album cover is pretty brilliant to look at, the main cover is a highway with faded pictures of Daughtry almost faded into the sky. Very nicely done. If you look through the sleeve you'll see some brilliant drawings of a man walking with a guitar in his hand, obviously leaving this town to search of something better, just like Daughtry did when he went onto American Idol.
_Value for Money_
I got this free in the end as it was a birthday present, however it would have cost me £8.95 at this present time on Play.com and amazon. This is well worth the money in my opinion, the album is just fantastic and I'm sure it'll become one of my favourite albums that I own. I know his first album is. A fantastic album, each song has something special and it is now very rare to find an album without a bad song on it. From what I've been listening to lately, it's hard to find an album with more than 2 decent songs on it.
I really do love this album; it's so strong, so powerful and just works so well. Daughtry is on top form in each song, none of them seem rushed, they all seem like a lot of time and effort has gone into every little bit of the track. Chris's voice is just a powerhouse throughout the whole album, from heavy songs like Ghost Of Me to slower songs like Tennessee Line, he delivers something new, something fantastic and something worth listening to.
One of the best albums I've heard this year, very well put together and maybe just a little bit better than his debut album. If you like soft rock or even Nickelback then I'm sure you'll love Daughtry. If you want to hear how talented this guy is check out his songs on YouTube, and while your there, check out Chris Daughtry- Poker Face. Yes you've got it right. A rock version of Lady GaGa's- Poker Face. It truly is brilliant.
(C) Kirsty 2009
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 You Don't Belong
2 No Surprise
3 Every Time You Turn Around
4 Life After You
5 What I Meant To Say
6 Open Up Your Eyes
8 Ghost Of Me
9 Learn My Lesson
11 Tennesse Line
12 Call Your Name