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Candlebox - "Into The Sun" (CD)

Candlebox - "Into The Sun" CD cover image

"Into The Sun" track listing:

1. Stand (3:31)
2. Bitches Brewin' (3:37)
3. Surrendering (3:29)
4. Into The Sun (4:53)
5. Underneath It All (3:36)
6. Miss You (5:07)
7. How Does It Feel (3:58)
8. A Kiss Before (3:27)
9. Breathe Me In (Intro) (3:20)
10. Breathe Me In (5:13)
11. Lpver - come Back To Me (4:44)
12. Consider Us (4:09)

Reviewed by on July 9, 2009

"Those who still pull out their Poison and Damn Yankees CDs have found a friend in Candlebox."

Though fans of heavier metal like death and thrash may scoff at the idea of mainstream glam and hard rock even being called metal, those who still pull out their Poison and Damn Yankees CDs have found a friend in Candlebox. The band’s "Into The Sun" is a surprisingly 80’s reminiscent album that goes from bitter to melancholy to love struck, all in the course of about an hour.

"Stand" and "Bitches Brewin'" are sleazy, funky tunes that are scathing to say the least. Both are pretty good tracks, but more off color than the rest. The title track has an intoxicating tempo that’s like a sensual dance, mixed with some higher range vocals that aren’t bad, though light by today’s standards, but fortunately Candlebox closes out the tune with drums and guitar going full throttle with a nice edge.

There isn’t necessarily one track that is stellar in comparison to the others, but my favorite is probably "Underneath It All." It’s a solid southern rock song with lots of sleaze, and the guitar riff is a bit slower, but similar to the one found in Motley Crue’s "Wildside." If you like shred-happy sleaze, take a listen to the breakdown in this one.

Perhaps the other reason "Underneath It All" stands out is because it’s the last solid hard rock track before Candlebox takes a noticeable U-turn into the waters of melancholy and lost love. Suddenly there are acoustic guitars, a tiny hint of country, and even a Santana-inspired sound, as the band offers up the kind of music that teenage girls and ballad fans clamor to. It’s not that the remaining tracks are bad, but they’re more likely to appeal to the Gavin DeGraw crowd than metalheads.

Having said that, "Breathe Me In" does manage to remind the listener that this is a hard rock act, with a surprise ending that is full-on hard rock. This brief section makes listening to the second half of the album seem worthwhile. Overall, Candlebox has managed to make "Into The Sun" a decent album for mainstream fans, but the melodrama will probably leave a lot of more hardcore fans grimacing.

Highs: There’s some nice sleazy guitar work in the first two tracks, and at the end of "Breathe Me In."

Lows: The second half of the album delves into such depths of melodrama that a lot of people won’t take them seriously.

Bottom line: An interesting mix of emotions and sound that really only holds appeal for mainstream music fans.

Rated 3.0 out of 5 skulls
3.0 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)