Three Days Grace / One X / June 13, 2006
Pain / 08. Let It Die / 09. Over & Over
I don’t know why so many Americans make fun of Canada when so many good things come from there. Like Three Days Grace. Yes, my friends, Three Days Grace comes from Canada, and they have brought their nu metal with them. OK, technically they’re classified as hard rock, but come on…they sound so much like Adema it’s scary and they’re nu metal. You do the math.
I first took notice of Three Days Grace when they released the single “Just Like You.” To this day, I love that angry song. Come to think of it, TDG is an angry band. And by angry, I mean, they’re practically plotting homicides in their recording studio. This feeling comes through full force on their new album One X, which could easily have been named I Was Betrayed, Lost, Shot At, Framed For Murder, Disowned, and Dated a Cheating Bitch and This Album’s For All of You. Easily. I could proceed to make some sort of joke linking the song “Let It Die” to their angry feelings, but I do not want to. Instead, I want to talk about how excellent this album is.
Conviction is very important when a band is angry. If the listener doesn’t believe the singer is really pissed about stuff, then you end up conveying pseudo-hate and nobody likes a fake. What I like about this album is that the vocalist believes in everything he’s singing about, or maybe he’s just really good at pretending he is. Either way, it’s convincing. Adam Gontier has a very smooth voice that manages to strain at just the right moments as the tempo builds and crashes into any of the choruses present on the disc. These vocals and lyrics work beautifully beside the clear tones of the rhythm guitars and drums that flow so effortlessly from the speakers.
What I love so much about this album is that each song fluidly makes way for the next in a harmonious blend that creates an ocean of nu metal fit for sailing. In an age where the track listing of an album just doesn’t matter like it used to, as songs are personally mixed, hand-picked, and shuffled to oblivion, One X is accommodating to that three minute, random attention span. No matter where the needle lands on this record (or no matter which 00101101 lands on another 00011011), you are guaranteed a smooth, consistent play. Maybe there’s not too much innovation on the record, save for a beautifully subtle violin on “Over & Over,” but when the band promises a synth-free, computer-free, guitar-driven album, it delivers.