10 Best Shinedown Songs
It's pretty much impossible to turn on rock radio without hearing one or more Shinedown songs. In the 10 years since they released their debut album, the Florida rockers have proven themselves to be one of the most reliable hit-makers of the 21st century. They've churned out hit radio tracks even as they expand their range beyond hard rock to include textured mid-tempo tracks and even tender ballads. With their latest album, 'Amaryllis,' Shinedown have continued their hit-making streak with more chart-topping singles. So, we give props to the band with our list of the 10 Best Shinedown Songs:
'If You Only Knew'
Sunny, airy acoustic guitars shimmer throughout this surprisingly lighthearted and upbeat track from Shinedown's third album, 2008's 'The Sound of Madness.' If it weren't for the pounding drums, you could almost call this an adult contemporary ballad, what with the epic proclamations of love, the strings, and, wait, are those bells?
There was plenty of aggression bubbling over on Shinedown's 'Amaryllis' album, beginning with the lead single, 'Bully.' The issue-oriented track dealt with some of the troubles going on in schools these days, with singer Brent Smith taking the opportunity to encourage those being bullied to stand up for themselves. The anthemic track is quite empowering with a sing-along chorus as well.
'The Crow & the Butterfly'
Guitarist Zach Myers' epic, melodic lead guitar work further ratchets up the intensity throughout the second half of this already stormy song from 2008's 'The Sound of Madness.' Reportedly, the song is about a mother whose young son dies, but the lyrics also mention the pair "getting high as outer space" together, so let's hope this is a friend they're talking about.
'Fly From the Inside'
You never get a second chance to make a first impression, and that's especially true for rock bands. So, the opening song on Shinedown's 2003 debut 'Leave a Whisper' needed to kick some butt and tell people what they're about quickly. The band wastes little time doing just that here, mixing hard rock riffs with a heightened sense of dynamics and a huge, anthemic chorus.
Eschewing their more recent tendencies towards more dynamic music, Shinedown let it rip old-school style on the double-barreled opening track and first single from 2008's 'The Sound of Madness.' Reportedly an anti-love song to then-president George W. Bush, the track features lead singer Brent Smith railing against a clueless leader who is suffocating his own empire due to his own greed.
What better to work out your aggressions than in song? That's the path Shinedown followed with 'Enemies,' an in-your-face confessional between warring sides. Not only does the track rock, but there's a certain amount of swing brought to the track by drummer Barry Kerch as well. This one's great to get your blood boiling.
Supposedly, Shinedown themselves weren't very big fans of this tune, the appropriately titled second single from 'Sound of Madness,' when they first wrote it. Luckily, they gave the track a -- wait for it -- second chance, as it ended up being their biggest hit to date, a platinum selling smash that reached the charts on a wide variety of radio station formats.
Shinedown sing of a drug addict looking for salvation on this, the first single from their 2005 sophomore album 'Us and Them.' The repetitive, somber opening bass line helps to capture the mindset of a junkie living in day after day world of pills, needles and spoons, unable to muster the strength to break free on their own.
'The Sound of Madness'
Shinedown breaks out their best Metallica impression on this riff-heavy slice of metal, which served as the title track to their third album. Lead singer Brent Smith, in particular, drops his voice down a notch and adds some menace, sounding eerily like James Hetfield as he calls out self-pitying so called "rebels" who really are just avoiding responsibility.
Even if you ignore the fact that this song was the band's first major single, and therefore an important introduction to their brand of drama-filled melodic hard rock, this tune's powerful message about living each day to the fullest makes it one of the top Shinedown tracks. There was some controversy about the song's gun-related lyrics, but if you listen they hardly glorify violence -- instead using the weapon as a metaphor for a person staring down big changes in their life.