Saturate / We Are Not Alone / Phobia
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Some of rock's idealists would have listeners believe that every artist who comes along is obligated to be totally original. But realistically, any genre of music — be it rock, jazz, R&B, country, or Dominican merengue — is bound to have its leaders as well as its followers. Innovators who come up with something that's totally fresh — which could be anyone from Charlie Parker to the Sex Pistols to Astor Piazzolla to the outrageously eclectic Nellie McKay — deserve applause, but the more derivative artists shouldn't be condemned if they're skillful at what they do. Take Breaking Benjamin, for example. We Are Not Alone, the Pennsylvania post-grunge foursome's second full-length album, is every bit as derivative as their previous release, Saturate. Sure, Breaking Benjamin tends to be slightly heavier than Creed, Third Eye Blind, and other melodic post-grunge bands they're frequently compared to; they do, in fact, incorporate traces of alt-metal favorites Tool and Korn (minus the latter's hip-hop obsession). But at the end of the day, Breaking Benjamin is still a very derivative post-grunge band — and like Default and 3 Doors Down (two other frequent comparisons), they do such an enjoyably skillful job of being a derivative post-grunge band that one cannot help but give it up for them (unless he/she is among the musical ideologues who hate them on principle because they aren't trying to reinvent the alterna-rock wheel). We Are Not Alone (which contains three songs that were co-written with the Smashing Pumpkins' Billy Corgan) won't win any awards for innovation, but in terms of quality and craftsmanship — as well as warmth and feeling — Breaking Benjamin generally delivers the goods. We Are Not Alone might give you a sense of "been there, done that," but it's still a respectable footnote in the incredibly crowded post-grunge field.
All of BB's albums for 25 bucks? That's a steal! I pity da foo that don't buy this, it's one solid catolouge. iTunes did something good for once here.
Breaking Benjamin has to be one of the best bands of all times! From their first album to their last and hopefully for their new album they have not lost anything and have stayed the same hard rocking band and show no signs of selling out. This is a must buy compilation and do not hesitate!
A phenomenal collection of music from one of the best bands around.
Breaking Benjamin hasn't let me down yet and let's hope they stay around for a LONG time. Their songs are deep, hard-rocking ones that don't compromise. So cheers to the gang for a great career so far! PS: They are so awesome live, so check them out if they come around to your town.
Formed: 2000 in Wilkes-Barre, PA
Years Active: '00s, '10s
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