Three Days Grace’s much anticipated fourth album is quite the puzzling album. When “Chalk Outline” first came out, my first thought was to question the direction Three Days Grace was going. It took listening to the song several times before I decided that it was a good song.
This album is definitely different than any other album Three days Grace has released, but I would not say this is their best album. This is a good album, there’s no questioning that, but the lyrics are somewhat troubling. Any Three Days Grace fan knows the lyrical content of all albums, and a lot about the band’s past. They’re onto something with the music, its more in sync with the best aspect of the band, which is Adam Gontier’s voice, but while most of the songs in the past seemed to come from Adam’s very soul, these seem to have come more from his mind. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but the lyrics pose many questions.
The most questionable, for me, was the track, “Happiness”, which is clearly says, “Happiness straight from the bottle, when real life’s too hard to swallow.” It is a great line, don’t get me wrong, but considering Adam is the main song writer of the band, and he does not drink, it has me, and many other fans, baffled. Is it is about alcoholics in general? Perhaps its an old song back in the day when Adam had his drug addiction? Or is it a complete work of fiction? I’m stuck on that song, the lyrics have me baffled, and they actually borrowed the intro to it from “The Good Life” which is on Life Starts Now.
Another one that I think may have been written back in Adam’s drug addiction days would be my personal favorite on the album, “Operate”. It has a Motley Crue sort of feel to it, and the song sounds like it could possibly be personifying a drug, much like Adam did in “Gone Forever”. “I know how you’re operating, only come around when you know that I need it. Cut out my heart and you leave me bleeding, you are the only that brings out the demon.” It wasn’t until the line, “Like pills you leave me lifeless. One hit just makes me want you more until we’re in a motel room, locked up behind closed doors.” That makes me thinks its either obviously about a drug of some kind, or a person that is like a drug to him. Either one is possible.
“The High Road” is also worth mentioning, because it sounds a bit like a follow up to their hit, “Never Too Late”. Musically, no, but if you pay attention to the lyrics though, it sort of does. “Will you help me find the right way out or let me take the wrong way down? Will you send me out or make me take the long way around? I took the low road in, I’ll take the high road out. I’ll do whatever it takes it be the mistake you can’t live without.” It sort of sounds like, you made it past the part where you’re just trying to stay alive, and now you’re actually trying to live.
This album is full of great lyrics, but I feel like maybe, just maybe they wrote them to purposely try to relate to people. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, but that’s never been normal for Three Days Grace. Their lyrics have always been relatable, but they’ve been real. Like “Unbreakable Heart”, I do feel like that song could save lives, but from the first time I heard it, I thought to myself, “They wrote that just to give people hope and strength.” Which is great, it’s a great thing that they see that they can use their music to change lives, but why are they trying? They never had to try in the past, and yet people would still relate perfectly to their lyrics.
Because they did put a lot into this album, obviously, and because I personally can’t find anything wrong with the album, I still do have to give this album five stars. Everything about it is great, and its thought provoking even, but it does on some level feel forced. Some tracks even feel like they were simply written just to be played live, such as “Sign Of The Times”, that track just screams, “this song was made to be played live.”
If you haven’t already, go check out the brand new Three Days Grace album, Transit of Venus and decide what you think.
All reviews have the date they were written, the album title, and the band's name, with the exception of Life Starts Now by Three Days Grace and Dear Agony by Breaking Benjamin. Those dates were guessed at, as they were written well before the website began.