Skillet – Unleashed (2016) [Qobuz 24-48]

Skillet – Unleashed (2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/48 kHz | Time – 42:56 minutes | 583 MB | Genre: Rock
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Artwork: Front cover | © Atlantic Records

Grammy-nominated rockers Skillet have released Unleashed, their new studio album and follow up to their 2013 release Rise, which bowed at #4 on the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart. Unleashed – from the bombastic opening riff of “Feel Invincible” to the memorable closing of the album finale “The Resistance,” it is clear the band has created an album that lets their music speak loudest, while still delivering some of their most personal and heartfelt collections of songs to date. Songs like “Back From The Dead,” “Stars” and “Out Of Hell” showcase the musicianship and songwriting that has garnered the band a rabid worldwide fan base, a platinum selling album and multiple Grammy nominations. Skillet has cemented its place as one of the 21st century’s most successful rock bands.

Skillet’s tenth LP, Unleashed, continues the journey that began on 2003’s tonal shift Collide. The Nashville-based Christian band has always set itself apart from the CCM masses – touring with secular hard rock bands and drawing huge festival crowds – while sustaining an undying message of positivity and hope. Unleashed is aptly titled: two decades into their existence, Skillet have made their biggest album yet, an explosion of bombast and scope that draws on mainstream influences without wavering from their wholesome values. With contributions from Brian Howes (Halestorm, Daughtry), Kevin Churko (Disturbed, Five Finger Death Punch), Neal Avron (Linkin Park, Fall Out Boy), and Seth Mosley (Newsboys, TobyMac), Unleashed is also Skillet’s most polished effort. Korey Cooper and Seth Morrison’s riffs maintain the energy at caffeine-highs, while Jen Ledger’s drumming pounds with precision intensity. Vocalist and sole founding member John Cooper holds everything together with a full-bodied delivery and consistently strategic lyrics that are subtle enough to please fans of any faith. The best moments on Unleashed are high-octane turbo blasts like “Feel Invincible,” “Undefeated,” and “Out of Hell,” churning tracks that echo the fury of Muse or even, on the latter, Slipknot. They even borrow directly from Orgy’s cover of “Blue Monday” on the bouncing “Burn It Down.” Cooper’s vocal interplay with his wife Korey and Ledger adds a brightness and cohesion similar to the best moments on 2009’s Awake. Meanwhile, the orchestration and gravity that infused the Evanescence-lite Comatose layers stadium anthems like “I Want to Live” and the epic closer “The Resistance.” All of these heavier moments elicit purely physical responses, but there are also breaks to pause and contemplate. Stripping back the headlong rock charge, Skillet include a few purely praise & worship breathers like the polished Killers-synthy “Stars,” the Hillsong-with-bigger-amps “Lions,” and the gorgeous “Watching for Comets.” Whether in a giant mosh pit or a congregation of the faithful, Skillet know how to play a crowd and Unleashed succeeds on both fronts.

Tracklist:
01 – Feel Invincible
02 – Back From the Dead
03 – Stars
04 – I Want to Live
05 – Undefeated
06 – Famous
07 – Lions
08 – Out of Hell
09 – Burn it Down
10 – Watching for Comets
11 – Saviors of the World
12 – The Resistance

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