Red: Of Beauty and Rage review
Two years removed from Release the Panic, Red are back with Of Beauty and Rage, their fifth studio full length record and it’s one that should catch the attention of their fans from the very onset of the first track.
Completed with the help of the fans themselves via Pledge Music, Red took a different approach to this record and it’s one of their most mature records as well- and one of their darkest as well, lyrically and musically.
Everything about Of Beauty and Rage shows the darker side of Red- even the album cover, which shows a gray image of a masked figure standing in a wooded area with red leaves falling around it.
The album opens with a slow, haunting instrumental before exploding into “Imposter,” which sets the stage for what will soon become a dark, sinister, yet beautiful musical journey- hence the name of the album.
The album title says it all- this record is both full of rage yet exponentially beautiful at the same time. The string instruments and symphonic rock that was so prevalent on their first two albums is back and in full effect on Of Beauty and Rage, a presence that will be an instant winner with the Red faithful.
“Darkest Part” is one of the most dramatic tracks on the record and shows frontman Michael Barnes’ vocals crying out like only Barnes can do while the ballad of “Of These Chains” is as powerful and dynamically gorgeous of a track as they’ve recorded yet and the piano beginning will take fans back to “Pieces” from The End of Silence- as will a lot of the heavier tracks.
When it’s all said and done, Barnes along with brothers Anthony and Randy Armstrong have stepped their game up in more ways than one. The first album without longtime drummer Joe Rickard and accompanied by a graphic novel, this is a new era Red at their best.