Skillet, ‘Unleashed’ – Album Review
Skillet have been one of the most commercially successful hard rock bands of the past decade, with two of their past three albums going platinum and 2013‘s Rise hitting gold status.
They have had a string of hit singles on both Christian and rock radio, and that shows no signs of abating with their latest album Unleashed.
Album opener “Feel Invincible” sets the tone, as it's a dynamic track that builds to anthemic proportions. Frontman John Cooper says, “It’s a fight song. Sometimes, everything in the world makes you want to give up. This is a reminder not to. I think, ‘This is my life. This is my family. I can’t go around being scared all the time.’ I have the strength to face what’s happening.”
Nearly every song on the album has the potential to be a single, a testament to the band’s songwriting chops. Tracks like “Back From the Dead” are larger than life and will have arena crowds singing along, while the ballad “Watching for Comets” is more introspective.
Skillet worked with an all-star team of producers on Unleashed. About half the record was produced by Brian Howes, who also helmed 2006‘s Comatose. They also worked with Kevin Churko (Five Finger Death Punch, Ozzy Osbourne), Neal Avron (Linkin Park, Disturbed) and Seth Mosley (Newsboys, For King & Country). Even though there are several producers, the album is still very cohesive.
There’s not a bit of filler in the record’s dozen songs, which fly by in just over 40 minutes. In a genre where it can be difficult to tell one band from another, Skillet have a distinctive sound accentuated by Cooper’s unmistakable vocals. As on the past few albums, drummer Jen Ledger provides some vocals, as well, adding variety to the proceedings.
On the album closer “The Resistance,” Cooper sings, “This is how we rise up, it’s our resistance, you can’t resist us.” He’s absolutely right, as Skillet fans won’t be able to resist the instantly addictive Unleashed.
See Skillet’s Korey Cooper + Jen Ledger in This Gallery of Supreme Rock Goddesses