Something Like Sound

Album Review: For the Love of the Game

by on Jan.26, 2009, under Album Reviews

Pillar is one of those bands that seems to have been around forever and seems to release an album nearly every year. This usually results in a lack of quality or a band that is simply that good. Pillar fits somewhere in the middle. Each of their previous eleven albums, some of which are re-releases and deluxe editions, have maintained a very high quality of production, song writing, and musical ability. Despite the amount of records produced, only a couple of Pillar’s albums stand out in the crowd of rock albums (Fireproof, Where Do We Go from Here). With each new album Pillar either slightly or dramatically shifts their musical style. From the rap-rock style of Above to the nu-metal of Fireproof to the hard rock of Where Do We Go from Here and The Reckoning to the calmer, yet passionate, hard rock of For the Love of the Game, Pillar has been all over the place. However, Pillar has yet to compromise great songwriting and undeniably catchy tunes.

Memorable Song
Surprisingly, the best song on this album is a ballad. For a rock band like Pillar this often spells disaster for the album. The opposite is the case in this instance; as the fifth track on the album, “Smiling Down” offers a fresh and powerful break from the head-banging rock offered on the first four tracks and introduces a new path for the album. Save one track, “The Runaway,” the rest of the album takes on a deeper, serious sound with more passionate lyrics and emotional musicianship. This track is a great intro to what turns into a fantastic second half of the album.

Forgettable Song
“The Runaway” is easily the worst song of the album because it seems vastly out of place after the captivating track before it, “Smiling Down.” With boring verses and a wandering chorus the track disrupts the flow provided from the previous tracks and after a ballad, the strange, peppy beat on the track ruins the aura. The track should have not made the record and the track following it, “Throwdown,” should have taken its place.

In Closing
During the first part of the album, driving beats fill most of the songs. Tracks like “Smiling Down,” “Get Back,” “I Fade Away,” and “Forever Starts Now” give a reprieve from the normalcy found on the previous tracks and offer a distinct and exceptional change to the album. The last song, “Forever Starts Now,” is a song that offers a tremendous climax to the album and leaves the listener wanting more. Pillar has yet again provided a solid album but one that is hard to place in the confusing direction Pillar has been going as a band. This album is a very pleasing listen with several songs that are hard to forget; hopefully their next album will show a more consistent direction as a band. Overall, this is one of Pillar’s best albums.

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