Review of The Fray's self-titled album.
Though their debut album 'How To Save A Life' was released in 2005, Denver boys The Fray had to wait two years before they scored a global hit with the single of the same title. This follow up will be promoted with a series of shows in the UK at the end of April and in May.
In the unlikely event you haven't heard the aforementioned mega-hit, 'How To Save A Life' is the type of ballad that soundtracks rom-coms and teen soap operas, aided in no little amount by Isaac Slade's emotive vocals. Those who enjoy that track will be delighted by this self-titled record, for it would appear that the quartet who make up the band have a nailed on formula of creating mid-tempo, light-rock ballads which stir the senses. The opening half of the album is very impressive, 'Syndicate' swoons as a lighters-in-the-air anthem and really kicks into life in the second chorus, while lead single 'You Found Me' has an empowering hook despite a tepid start. 'Never Say Never' must surely be in consideration for release; introduced as a solemn piano number it expertly develops into an affecting track complimented by swooning strings and an aching guitar solo - it's enough to melt even the most hardened of alpha-males.
Perhaps due to the lack of variation in pace, the second half of 'The Fray' doesn't impress as much as the first. 'Enough For Now' provides another decent ballad, but 'Where The Story Ends', 'Ungodly Hour' and closing number 'Happiness' lack impact and appeal. 'We Build Then We Break' provides a surprising piece of variation, an upbeat and rhythm-driven direction which should be explored further, and ultimately this is a decent record which should see the band's existing fans satisfied.