The Fray offers nothing new on ‘Scars and Stories’
Pop-rock foursome The Fray are undeniably good artists. But their new album, “Scars and Stories,” unfortunately sounds just like every other album the band has released. There is nothing new.
This album and the past albums, such as “The Fray,” “How to Save a Life” and “Reason” all have similar songs with similar meanings. The songs’ are dedicated to love, whether good or bad, and what it has to offer in every way. But how many times can a band keep coming out with songs that sound so similar before fans get tired of listening?
The album is boring. “Scars and Stories” ultimately serves as a lullaby, as it is dull enough to put the listener to sleep.
There are few tracks that standout on the album – the first song on the track list, “Heartbeat” and “The Wind,” which has an upbeat rhythm, but still bears that familiar sound.
The Fray were among the first bands to combine an influence of British neo-stadium acts and American pop. Their music came from that of the retro-AOR bands of the mid-90s, such as Counting Crows and Wallflowers and American emo-pop bands like Jimmy Eat World. The piano and wavering choruses are much inspired by the famous British bands.
Lead singer Issac Slade has such a familiar voice it has to be hard to change the tone of the songs or even the style. “Scars and Stories” is simply an album for The Fray’s most loyal fans; the ones who would love the group no matter what. The Fray are not trying anything new, nor are they attempting to evolve their sound.
So even though the album is not very exciting, the songs are still uplifting in message. The melodies of the soundtrack are still very beautiful and pleasant-sounding, but so is Sunday morning Mass music. And both serve the same effect: they put their listeners to sleep.