Lifehouse - Smoke And Mirrors

Album cover
Alternative, Rock
Geffen Records
Lifehouse
Smoke And Mirrors
Lifehouse - Smoke And Mirrors Review rating:
3
User rating:
Average: 4.3 (4 votes)

The L.A. pop/rock band who hit it big with their first single "Hanging by a Moment" in 2001, and since has scored three more Top 40 hits including the wedding slow-dance song "You and Me," has a strange dichotomy at work. Fortunately for their cause, Lifehouse seem unable to write and compile a bad album. Unfortunately, however, they seem equally as unable to make a great album. 2002's Stanley Climbfall was the closest they ever got, yet ironically is their only album thus far that has failed to go gold (500,000 copies sold). But since that sophomore effort, Lifehouse have released three consecutive albums that contained a small handful of well-crafted pop songs but a majority of filler tracks.

Smoke & Mirrors, in fact, closely parallels 2007's Who We Are. The band rocks out with a soaring anthemic lead single ("First Time" / "Halfway Gone"), whose melodies rarely leave lead singer Jason Wade's comfort zone of a six- or seven-note radius. Lyric-wise, Lifehouse retains their deliberately vague yet emotionally powerful diction, singing, "you're halfway in, but don't take too long/ Cause I'm halfway gone, I'm halfway gone." On the opening track "All In," which rocks out slightly harder than most of the band's work and contains almost the exact same chorus melody as Who We Are opening track "Disarray," Wade emotes "and now I'm callin', callin' out your name/ Even if I lose the game, I'm all in/ I'm all in tonight." You will believe him, you may sing along with him, but the song's punch is pulled by the band's determination not to break out of their mold, a pattern for Smoke & Mirrors.

"From Where You Are," a previously-released single, is a ballad not unlike the band's past hit "Whatever It Takes," and it will appeal to the exact same audience. "It Is What It Is" and "Falling In," respectively a sad break-up song and a happy lovesong, could even be combined to create a track like 2007's "Broken." But that being said, there is nothing on Smoke & Mirrors that hits quite as hard as the explosive chorus on "Broken." The band even takes a small chance on one track - like they did on Who We Are's "The Joke" - when they utilize a dance beat and modern-rock structural formula on "Here Tomorrow Gone Today." Yet again, the song is well-written and enjoyable, but seems watered down. In the end, Lifehouse has simply remade their last two albums. While this is completely satisfactory, one cannot help but feel disappointed, for despite general critical panning, the band has amazing potential if they'd only take a few steps out of their comfort zone and create something original.

1. All In
2. Nerve Damage
3. Had Enough
4. Halfway Gone
5. It Is What It Is
6. From Where You Are
7. Smoke & Mirrors
8. Falling In
9. Wrecking Ball
10. Here Tomorrow Gone Today
11. By Your Side
12. In Your Skin

Lifehouse is a post-grunge band pioneered by lead singer and songwriter Jason Wade. In the last ten years, Lifehouse has released five albums, debuting with the multi-platinum album No Name Face in the year 2000. The group includes Jason Wade (lead vocals, guitar), Rick Woolstenhulme Jr. (drums, percussion), Bryce Soderberg (bass guitar) and Ben Carey (guitar). They have sold upwards of fifteen million singles and albums worldwide to date.

... read more

Did You Know?

Batman
Batman says... "Taking Back Sunday composes their music first, then the lyrics."

Featured Album

Hawthorne Heights-Hate
Hate
Hawthorne Heights

Recent Interviews

ARIA
ARIA
Tue, September 06, 2011
A Common Year
A Common Year
Thu, September 01, 2011
Mayday Parade
Mayday Parade
Mon, August 22, 2011
Blessthefall
Blessthefall
Tue, August 09, 2011
Stray From the Path
Stray From the Path
Thu, August 04, 2011
The Summer Set
The Summer Set
Wed, July 27, 2011
Psychic Babble
Psychic Babble
Tue, June 28, 2011
Touche Amore
Touche Amore
Fri, June 24, 2011
August Burns Red
August Burns Red
Tue, June 21, 2011
Nocturnal Me
Nocturnal Me
Mon, June 13, 2011
Living With Lions
Living With Lions
Mon, June 13, 2011
Polar Bear Club
Polar Bear Club
Sun, June 12, 2011
The Swellers
The Swellers
Mon, May 23, 2011
Balance And Composure
Balance And Com ...
Sun, May 22, 2011
Protest The Hero
Protest The Hero
Fri, April 29, 2011
Dredg
Dredg
Wed, April 27, 2011
Otep
Otep
Sat, April 23, 2011
Fireworks
Fireworks
Tue, April 12, 2011
Dance Gavin Dance
Dance Gavin Dance
Sun, April 03, 2011
He Is We
He Is We
Sat, March 05, 2011

Powered by Drupal. Eco-friendly hosting provided by Site5 LLC.
All content on this site is licensed under a Creative Commons License .