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Hello Hurricane (Deluxe Version)

Switchfoot

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iTunes Review

Roaring back on a new label with a retooled sound, Switchfoot turns Hello Hurricane into a triumphant statement of purpose. It's not that the album is free from fear and doubt — lead singer/songwriter Jon Foreman grapples with a host of inner afflictions in these tracks. But the strength of Hello Hurricane comes from its sense of spiritual victory in the face of overwhelming odds, aided by some of the brawniest rock the band has laid down since its inception. Distorted guitars and clattering rhythms lend urgency to “Needle and Haystack Life,” “The Sound (John M. Perkins’ Blues),” and “Bullet Soul.” Foreman takes on a desperate edge in tracks like the galvanizing title song, snatching joy from impending disaster. Emotional breakdown — and the promise of spiritual rebirth — is a reoccurring theme, captured with fevered eloquence in “Free” and “Mess of Me.” In contrast, “Your Love Is a Song” and “Enough to Let Me Go” are more contemplative visions of man’s relationship with God. “Always,” a delicately wrought expression of love between parent and child, may be the album’s most affecting moment.

Customer Reviews

Itunes aversion to Switchfoot?

Does itunes have an aversion to promoting Switchfoot? This is seriously one of the better cds to come out in a long while and itunes is stuck promoting Adam Lambert, the 2nd place American Idol performer. I wish itunes would quit falling in line with MTV and Rolling Stone magazine and go where the good music truly is.

BEST WORK YET!!

I never thought an album could get any better than Oh! Gravity...but this one is a completely different breed of Switchfoot, in a new amazing way of course. The trials and tribulations they went through as a band really show through on this album; the emotion is heart-wrenching, yet inspirational....some of the songs even made me cry, and I'm pretty sure Sing It Out is the best song I have heard in my life, no kidding. I get emotional just thinking about that song. I will never forget where I was when I first listened to this album. Thank you, Switchfoot for getting me through the toughest times of my life, and filling me with a sense of undying hope for the future. I pray that you will continue to make music as long as you have one fan (me), which will be forever. I love and appreciate you guys more than you will ever know. Peace and Love from your biggest fan, Colleen <3

Switchfoot's Best Album Since The Beautiful Letdown!

Switchfoot’s 7th album (3rd after their mainstream hit Beautiful Letdown) signals a rebirth for the band that in many ways parallels Beautiful Letdown. Like that album, this was their first time recording independently without the pressures of a major record contract (they had parted ways with Columbia in 2008 and negotiated their current deal with Atlantic only after finishing the album). In fact, it was a challenging 2 years working on the album because they had TOO much freedom, which included tracking over 80 songs and building their own studio in their hometown of San Diego.

However, after this long journey they rediscovered their sound and identity, emerging with their best and most well-rounded album since Beautiful Letdown, with a wide spectrum ranging from passionate and hard-hitting rock anthems (eg. Mess of Me, Free, Bullet Soul) to soulfully mellow ballads (eg. Sing It Out, Your Love is a Song) to catchy almost pop-rock hits (eg Hello Hurricane, Needle and Haystack Life, and Yet), all with soul-searching lyrics. While you may not appreciate every track equally given the variety of styles, you won’t find a bad track in the album. If you’ve liked ANY Switchfoot album in the past, this will definitely become one of your favorites (if not THE favorite).

Track Reviews:

1) Needle and Haystack Life (4.5/5): A catchy rock tune with U2-like verses that give way to classic Switchfoot soaring vocals in the chorus. Lyrically, it discusses the beauty and miracle in human life: “In this needle and haystack life / I found miracles there in your eyes / It’s no accident we’re here tonight / We are once in a life time.”

2) Mess of Me (4/5)– Their first single, this reflects the progression and maturity of Switchfoot as a rock band: heavy electric guitar riffs, driving drum beats, and includes a bold bridge. What stands out the most to me is the way that lead singer Jon Foreman injects passion into every syllable, esp as he sings “I want to spend the rest of my life alive!”

3) Your Love Is a Song (4.5/5): Self-described as 3rd in a trilogy (“Let Your Love Be Strong” from Oh! Gravity, and “Your Love is Strong” from Jon Foreman’s “Limbs and Branches”), it contemplates the concept of love and grace. This is the first of several slower ballads, which are personally some of my favorites. Lyrically and musically, this is a beautiful song: “oh Your love is a symphony / all around me, running through me / oh Your love is a melody, underneath me, running to me.”

4) The Sound (John M. Perkins Blues) (3.5/5): Another edgy rock track in the vein of “Mess of Me,” this consists of strong electric riffs that blend into a melodic pre-chorus which ultimately leads into a punctuated, hard-hitting chorus. While the intensity and borderline shouts in the chorus can be off-settingly harsh at times, it reflects the rawness of emotion as they cry out for the world to be transformed by a movement defined by love.

5) Enough to Let Me Go (4/5): This is more of a light rock love song with evidences of influence from U2. It is driven by a simple yet beautiful acoustic guitar riff accompanied by a steady beat and the occasional electric guitar ornamentation. It explores the theme of how love actually requires trust and letting go. "Do you love me enough to let me go? / To let me follow through / to let me fall for you?”

6) Free (5/5)– My personal favorite of the harder rock songs, I think it represents the perfect blend of edginess, passion, and melody without becoming overly punctuated (ie some of the shouts/screams in “The Sound” and “Bullet Soul”). Lyrically, Jon Foreman is crying out to be liberated from himself, using the powerful line “Inside this shell there’s a prison cell.”

7) Hello Hurricane (4.5/5) – This title-track song is a catchy rock hit that could see success on multiple formats (Rock, Alternative, Pop), much like “Needle and Haystack Life.” This song discusses the theme of overcoming hardships and tragedies: “hello hurricane, you can’t silence my love / I’m a fighter fighting for control .“

8) Always (5/5) – Already a hit on inspirational radio stations, this ballad that discusses the timeline of human life, beginning with infancy/entering this world, transitioning to heartbreak/tragedy, and then finishing with restoration/peace that comes with surrendering one’s life and doubts. This song reminds me most of “On Fire” from Beautiful Letdown.

9) Bullet Soul (3/5) – The last of the harder rock anthems, this was personally my least favorite track on the album, but it depends on which end of the musical spectrum (from mellow to heavy) you prefer. I personally found some of the “screams” near the edge of the album off-setting. However, like stated previously, I could see many listeners liking this song for the same reasons.

10) Yet (4.5/5) – A steady lighter rock song with a cool, laid-back, yet driving feel. The blend of bass guitar and rhythm (created both synthetic and actual drums) with Jon’s soothing voice make this song one of my favorites. Lyrically, this songs poses a very thought-provoking statement when Jon sings: “if it doesn’t break your heart, then it isn’t love.”

11) Sing It Out (5/5) – This song has became my favorite track. Consistent with the lyrically theme, the verses really embody a feeling of “lostness,” in which there is no clear sense of rhythm and just an underlying pool of noise. Then, the soaring vocals emerge from the depths to cry out “Sing it out, Sing it out / Take what is left of me / and make it a melody.” The haunting music penetrated by hopeful vocals reflect the hope that brings comfort during dark times.

12) Red Eyes (4/5)– this song signals an emergence from the now-passed hurricane, opening with a peaceful and melodic hailing of bells and chimes. Now that darkness has passed, Jon focuses on not falling back into the routine of life. Rather, he reminds us to focus on the grander themes of life, such as wonder, forgiveness, and hope.

Biography

Formed: 1996 in San Diego, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

After gaining a foothold in the contemporary Christian music scene, Switchfoot went mainstream with 2003's The Beautiful Letdown, a double-platinum album that straddled the line between sacred and secular rock music. Years before Switchfoot's commercial breakthrough, though, the group struggled to make a dent in the San Diego area, where singer/guitarist Jonathan Foreman, bassist Tim Foreman, and drummer Chad Butler began playing together in 1996. The lineup logged several shows under its original...
Full Bio
Hello Hurricane (Deluxe Version), Switchfoot
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