Written by Alex Stojanovic
World I Used To Know
Purpose For Pain
Heaven In Me
Wake Up Call
Face Of The Sun
Gone Too Soon
Ready To Love
Release Date: July 19, 2019
Label: Napalm Records
Scott Stapp - Lead vocals / Sammy Hudson - Bass & backing vocals / Ben Flanders - Guitars & backing vocals
Yiannis Papadopoulos - Lead guitars / Dango Empire - Drums
When Scott announced that he signed to Napalm Records, people were wondering whether he was going to make a metal record. Now, his new solo album The Space Between The Shadows isn't a metal record, but there are definitely some metal-leaning moments on here, which are probably the heaviest we've ever heard from him. At the same time, he pours his heart out with stories that affected him heavily throughout his life, and many of those stories really hit home to a lot of people. Case in point, "Name" talks about the pain Scott experienced of his father walking away from his family when he was a young kid, and growing up without a father, and how he vows to not let his kids experience that pain. It may not be one of the heaviest songs in terms of the music, but one of the heaviest in terms of emotion. It's a tear-jerker.
The heavy stories don't end there though. There's also "Gone Too Soon", which sees Scott paying tribute to his friends Chris Cornell, Chester Bennington and Scott Weiland, but this song can be dedicated to anyone that someone lost in their lives. There seems to be a pattern in the running order, especially in the first half of the record, where it goes "heavy/rock song, ballad/slow song". "World I Used To Know", "Purpose For Pain" and "Survivor" are all heavy tracks, while "Name", "Heaven In Me" and "Wake Up Call" are slower, ballad-esque tracks. In the second half, there's a few more rocker tracks, with only a couple of ballads. If you prefer the rockier stuff, you'll be glad to know that the heavy tracks outnumber the number of ballads, but only by one song.
On the lyrical front, it shouldn't be surprising that a lot of the lyrics have religious references, like "Mary's Crying", "Last Hallelujah" and "Heaven In Me". Scott was always great at writing lyrics that connected with a lot of people that wanted a spiritual vibe in their hard rock. I'm not a religious person, and even if his lyrics aren't something that I connect with, I have a huge appreciation for his ability as a lyricist, because his lyrics are very poetic and really well written, whether they're about religion or a personal story. The other thing I love about Scott's lyrics is that they are always pure and straight from the heart. When the lyrics are coming from an honest place, you can't help but appreciate the song(s) so much more than you already do.
I know Scott's voice is also a bit polarizing, but it's identifiable. I always thought he had a great voice that fit really well with the music he was singing over. I can remember listening to Creed a lot when I was younger because they had great crunchy guitars and awesome riffs, thanks to Mark Tremonti, and I will always have a soft spot for Creed. With that said, The Space Between The Shadows is a great album with really well-crafted songs. Even if you're not a fan of Scott's voice or the religious lyrics, I'm sure you'll find the music appealing because there's a generous amount of heavy songs, and a good amount of softer songs. The album can also serve as a therapy session for people going through some of the similar struggles Scott went through.
Highs: One of the purest and most honest releases of 2019.
Lows: If you're not a fan of Scott Stapp, this album won't change your mind.
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