2009 release from the Alternative Pop rockers, their sixth studio album overall and, first release since 2003. Burning The Days features guest appearances from Rush drummer Neil Peart and Pop singer/songwriter Richard Marx... more ». Vertical Horizon has had quite a career thus far: the album Everything You Want sold over 1.5 million copies with the title song hitting #1 on Billboard's Hot 100 and Adult Top 40 charts. The song was the most played song of 2000. Their other successes at radio include 'You're A God' (#4 on Billboard's Adult Chart) and 'Best I Ever Had (Grey Sky Morning)', which in 2005, became a Top 20 country hit for Gary Allen.« less
2009 release from the Alternative Pop rockers, their sixth studio album overall and, first release since 2003. Burning The Days features guest appearances from Rush drummer Neil Peart and Pop singer/songwriter Richard Marx. Vertical Horizon has had quite a career thus far: the album Everything You Want sold over 1.5 million copies with the title song hitting #1 on Billboard's Hot 100 and Adult Top 40 charts. The song was the most played song of 2000. Their other successes at radio include 'You're A God' (#4 on Billboard's Adult Chart) and 'Best I Ever Had (Grey Sky Morning)', which in 2005, became a Top 20 country hit for Gary Allen.
"Vertical Horizon is back and better than ever with Burning the Days their sixth album and latest release after a six-year hiatus. The band has come a long way since their debut in 1992 with " There and Back Again" which focused on the band's founding members Keith Kane and Matt Scannell each showcasing their signature voices and harmony-laced guitars for a folk-rock feel. Since than, the band's sound has evolved with founding member Matt Scannell taking the lead as front man and principle songwriter for the band's last two albums. One thing hasn't changed however, and that is the passion, perseverance and powerful lyrics that have been the foundation behind the band since it's inception. Vertical Horizon is a band that not only believes in the music they have created but and each other as well. This is no more evident then in the fact that the band has released the album on their own label Outfall Records.
Lead singer and songwriter Matt Scannell wrote and produced all the songs on the album in his home studio, but not without a little help from his friends. Scannell collaborates with some star power in the form of Grammy award winning songwriter Richard Marx and Rush's Neil Peart.
Marx who lends his talents on piano and producing Scannell's vocals on "Save Me from Myself" and "Back to You" but not to be outshined is Rush's Neil Peart who lends his talents drumming on "Save Me from Myself", "Welcome to the bottom", and " Even Now" which Peart also co-wrote and can hear the influences from both men on the album in its lyrical structure, style and production.
With this album Vertical Horizon pushes the boundaries and exceeds expectations. Lyrically, "Burning the days" is stronger then the band's previous efforts it encompasses more cohesiveness then the band previous work, Scannell combines relatable lyrics with thematic storytelling, emotion and depth.
As a songwriter, Scannell is skilled at writing catchy riffs and memorable hooks that will soon find the listener singing along to many of the album's tracks. " Burning the Days" explores the band's new musical direction with tracks that are more complex in texture and dynamics. In addition, Scannell also explores happiness with a sense of vulnerability and cautiousness that makes it all the more endearing then the darker side of love and loss the band's embraced in the past. The band also switches directions with this newest record as the majority of the tracks incorporate more of the acoustic sound the band originally began with in the early 90's. Some of the standout tracks on the album " All is Said and Done" " The Lucky One" " Middle Ground" and " Here".
" I want you to hear me, I need you to feel this", "All is Said and Done" the first track on the album hooks you from the start from the synth loop to Scannell's deep raspy vocals this song leaves you wanting more and the band does not disappoint.
" All is said and Done", is followed by "The Lucky one" the second track on the album and perhaps one of the most surprising tracks on the album it's a light-hearted, love song, the piano intro is a welcome surprise and Scannell who has a knack for writing inspiring and invigorating choruses doesn't disappoint accompany a great chorus with soaring guitars.
" Middle Ground" is delves more to the dark side of dealing with a relationship that you just can't let go of but there is a need for change, resolution. It is the strongest track on the album an all out rocker melodically pleasing and similar to the band's 2003 single " I'm Still Here" encompassing that mix of defiance, rebellion and perseverance.
Finally, " Here" is a so subtle but so beautiful love song. "Here" is the closest to the band's duo days and reminiscent of their first cd "There and Back Again" its nice to hear that familiar sound of Scannell's voice with minimal accompaniment until the chorus where he rocks out once again. " Here" is that love song that you want to be serenaded by and one of the best examples of what happily ever after could be.
If there is one drawback to the album it's the absence of co-founder, guitarist/vocalist Keith Kane's whose unique voice and memorable harmonies are absent or inaudible on the album disappointing the band's longtime fans. However, when " All Is Said And Done", Burning the Days is just as strong from beginning to end, making it the best and most complex album to date. Scannell's lyrics resonate with fans because he is not only in tune with himself but with them and depicts that honestly in his songs.
Vertical Horizon still has "it"
Wade Bloom | Fargo, ND USA | 09/22/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Vertical Horizon fans will rejoice with the release of Burning The Days. Well worth the wait. The hard rock edge has been toned down a little (just a little), but it still is vintage Vertical Horizon. "Save Me From Myself" is the first released single. Check out "The Middle Ground", "All Is Said And Done", "Back To You" and "Afterglow". Vertical Horizon fans will find this an easy purchase. Welcome back Vertical Horizon!"
Welcome return to form
Abhijeet Gupta | Mumbai, Maharashtra India | 09/23/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"VH is one of those bands that has created excellent music through the years but somehow have continued to fly a little under the radar. Their last effort Go, although commendable was a little too heavy and unidimensional. The cool thing about Burning the days is it's variety and a sense that Matt Scannell and Keith Kane are now out to have a bit of fun by making the music they like. Excellent stuff. Personal favorites include Welcome to the Bottom, Even Now and the fine ballad Here. A very solid rock album by a band that deserves more attention."
The Brilliance Continues
John Hope | Australia | 10/22/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Long time VH fans have had an extremely long wait for some new material. I'm very happy to say - the wait has been worthwhile. Their new album is simply brilliant. Absolutely strong, both lyrically and musically from start to finish. Matt Scannell is such a wonderful and talented songwriter who certainly knows how to craft great rock songs. There are some immediate stand out tracks such as 'Save Me From Myself' and 'Middleground' that resonate and hook you in from first listen. Other songs reveal themselves to you more and more with repeated listening. I've only had this album about 1 week now, but have already listened to it more times than I can count. There is not one weak track on the album. The only reason I'm pleased the last song 'Even Now' finishes is for me to start listening to the entire album all over again. This is the equal of any album they have released and continues the trend set by 'Everything You Want' and 'Go'. Welcome back VH. I just hope there are many more albums to come and that we don't have to wait long for the next release."