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David Comes to Life

4.6 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Audio CD, June 7, 2011
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Their third album, the 18-song, 78-minute David Comes To Life, is a rock opera, an album set to a play. Though no less monumental, it is far more melodic than their break through The Chemistry of Common Life. There are more female vocals, which work in perfect contrast to Damian Abraham's highly effective wounded bull growl.

Review

"An 80-minute odyssey of flailing and howling that could be the most epic punk album ever." 9 of 10 stars --Spin
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 7, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Matador Records
  • ASIN: B004RZTNUM
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #90,248 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Try to move beyond the punk/hardcore label this band has. They've pretty much transcended those genres at this point, and this album might be something of a game changer for them. The main problem for some people willl be the vocals of Pink Eye. Bellowed in the tried and true tradition of Henry Rollins (circa Black Flag) and early Bob Mould, they are not cookie monster, more pissed off and young.
Now, this is supposedly a rock opera, but, as with all of those, the story is rather confusing (I'll leave that description up to others), and, really, once the guitars kick in, the story (survival, redemption, trying to move forward) becomes more about feel than words.
About those guitars. Multi-layered, symphonic,galvanizing and always serving the context of these amazing pop songs. The band as a whole is so finely tuned into one another that they move like a tank, a very fast one. I'm 57, and believe me, there were times when listening to the sheer oomph of these songs made me wonder if I was too old to form a band.
And really, that's what this is all about, the redemptive power of anger transposed into reach for the heavens rock that in it's chaos is utterly in control and ready to move you. Music that can save you and remind of what's good about being alive.
Of course it's too long, too ambitious, sometimes impenetrable, but music that takes risks often risks failure, and this band knows that it's the failures that make you strong and it's the failures that give you heart. Really, in it's reach and go for it guts, this is the best album of it's kind since Zen Arcade.
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Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
"David Comes To Life" is not an album I would normally identify with at first glance. Sure, I'll occasionally return classic punk albums like Black Flag's "Damaged", and Fugazi's "In On The Kill Taker". And, noise rock and drone like Boris and Boredoms also make my playlist regularly. But, through and through, the brunt of my music library is electronic in nature. However, I'm surprised at the things I've learned by branching out to certain...extremes. This album is no different-a refreshing change of pace that I've played constantly.

Lead singer Damien Abraham spends much (if not all) of the album's length punching the lyrics in your face. While it might seem at first to overpower the music and intensity of the lyrics (which can be beautiful at times), you recognize after repeated listens that the rest of the band gets equal audible billing. There's an ongoing riff in "Serve Me Right" that illustrates this perfectly; the guitar churns and the drumbeat chugs to the words being said. If you take the right amount of time to appreciate this interplay, there are dozens of moments like this scattered throughout the album. Credit is definitely due to producer Shane Stonebeck and the rest of the band: Mike, Sandy, Josh, and Jonah.

(You definitely do not want to listen to this music while gardening, that's for sure. But, if you think you might be on the fence with this album, don't be afraid to let it grow on you on a warm summer day, driving around town with the windows down. I did...and I'm pleased with the results.)
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Format: MP3 Music
If there's one major reason I resent the era of online music, it's the depersonalizing effect it has on experiencing an album for the first time. F****d Up has achieved something glorious. Not only have they scripted an entire novel's worth of lyrics for this eighteen song concept album but they've made me pine for the days when it was rote to sit down with the lyric book in full immersion of the album as a product to absorb. A tangible statement of the artist's vision, ready for your full attention span and patience.

The inevitable comparisons to history's great concept albums isn't far fetched though one should consider the artistic aspirations of this Canadian hardcore outfit is still far removed from your Townshends and Corgans of the world, where pomp and grandiosity is sometimes mistaken for genius. No, F****d Up have instead chosen to tell an interesting story through a set of songs that are unrelenting in their energy. Comparisons to "Zen Arcade" are more apt. Both albums share similar character arcs and are unrelenting in the manic energy and aggression behind the music. Both albums can be exhausting and both are very notable for having every minute sound passionate, like the players are giving everything to every shriek of feedback and drumfill.

A lot's been said about Pink Eyes' vocals. They're harsh but I find it's hard to imagine the songs with any other approach. Highlight songs are "Queen of Hearts" (one of the best codas to a song I've ever heard), "Running on Nothing", "Ship of Fools" and "The Other Shoe".
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A true sign of a great album is when, over a year later, you come back to write a review because it's THAT good.

I'm 41, and have been in and around the punk/hardcore scene since the early-80's. I am not claiming to be the authority on all that is punk, but I am indeed very hard to please when it comes to music. And I will admit that I am quick to dismiss things as lame, passe, or contrived. At my ripe old age I still buy a lot of music, but certainly not as much as I used to. Most of what I buy is good for a few listens and then it gets tossed aside for something that it was likely trying to emulate to begin with. Call me nostalgic, but the music I grew up listening to I still consider to be the best of the breed. This is the end of my disclaimer.

I am overwhelmed by this band and this album. The sonic assault just blows you away. When the first few notes of "Queen of Hearts" came through my speakers, I had the same feeling of awe that I had when Greg Ginn's chords on Nervous Breakdown pierced my eardrums for the first time so many years ago. But the thing is, there is so much more to this band to simply allow them to be pigeonholed as just another hardcore band. There is storytelling, there is texture, there is art, there is beauty. However, there is also passion and rage. And for all of that, I continuously find myself queuing up this album. I listen to it on my commute. I listen to it when I go running. I listen to it when I'm working around the house. I listen to it on my headphones when everyone else in the house is asleep.

This band, and this album, is seriously freaking awesome. It is hard to compare them to anything in this day and age, but after I listened to the whole album all the way through the first time, I recall thinking that it reminded me of Husker Du's "Zen Arcade." But just a little bit. It's truly incomparable. From one jaded music snob to another, but this.
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