Album Review :
Red - Innocence & Instinct

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Artist: RED
Album: Innocence & Instinct
Label: Essential Records
Release Date: 2/10/09
Reviewer: Tyler Hess

1. Fight Inside
2. Death of Me
3. Mystery of You
4. Start Again
5. Never Be the Same
6. Confession (What’s Inside My Head)
7. Shadows
8. Ordinary World
9. Out From Under
10. Take It All Away

The first time I heard RED it was by way of their first hit single, “Breathe Into Me”, which was an excellent choice to get music fans into the band.  However, it wasn’t too much later that I saw them at a local festival.  I came with quite a bit of hope that the rest of the songs were just as epic.  I left, instead, with the feeling that every song sounded the same, except without that spark.  After that, I quite frankly gave up on the band.  That is, of course, until I received Innocence & Instinct in the mail.

The influences have always been pretty apparent.  RED simply plays a brand of rock that has several classifications, none of which are very well received.  The nicest thing to call it is Linkin Park inspired Nu-Metal.  It just gets ugly from there, with Nickelback Frat/Bro Rock that makes most scenesters cringe worse than fingernails on a chalkboard.  RED would probably not be happy if I compared them to Creed with the occasional anthemic scream, but, well, there we go.

It isn’t that the lyrics aren’t memorable or catchy, because they quite simply are.  Quite frankly, what they do they do pretty well and that is why they have reached some pretty elevated success over the past three years or so.  The problem is that around here we usually expect a little more out of artists.  They scream a variety of lyrics, but all I hear is “blah, blah, blah we’re generic”.  I don’t use that word lightly, it is overused and overrated, but it comes out of my mouth like a flock of doves in this case.  I’d have loved this stuff four years ago, but at this point in my life I’m more likely to have a difficult time staying awake while driving to this, especially during the rock ballads.  At least that is the score so far.  Nearly falling asleep – 1  Loving this album – 0.  No, this isn’t soccer, its radio rock.

Overall: What you see is what you get with RED’s Innocence & Instinct, but a little bit of creativity would have been appreciated from this rock anthem quartet.