Breaking Benjamin

We Are Not Alone

BY Amber AuthierPublished Sep 1, 2004

I always have a hard time describing a record like Breaking Benjamin’s sophomore CD, We Are Not Alone. On first listen its simply generic sound did nothing for me. Vocalist Ben Burley is so reminiscent of vocalists such as Bush’s Gavin Rossdale and Three Days Grace’s Adam Gontier, that I was overwhelmed with sudden boredom. In hopes of finding the right words to describe the CD in this review, I listened to Breaking Benjamin several times over a week and several elements of the disc started to grow on me, even appeal to me. It started with Aaron Fink’s high pitch, lead guitar riff on the disc’s opening track, "So Cold.” With a closer listen, the song’s lyrics are, admittedly, pretty intelligent and gripping. Skip ahead a few tracks to "FireFly,” where the steadily brilliant drum work of Jeremy Hummel also seems to now be grabbing my attention. On the third or fourth listen of "Forget It,” one of three songs that was co-penned by ex-Smashing Pumpkins front-man Billy Corgan, it begins to stand out by suddenly changing the album’s tempo and utilising the dreamy and nostalgic Siamese Dream style of lead and backing vocal arrangements. Even the closing track "Rain,” although lacking any notable stand-alone musicianship, cleverly uses lyrics from a popular children’s song. But the problem with We Are Not Alone is the songs in between the aforementioned highlights. Breaking Benjamin created a standard of quality for themselves that they simply couldn’t meet on the entire disc.

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