The Starting Line – Direction Album Review

Posted by Corey in Reviews | 06.03.2007 at 4:08 pm

The Starting Line – Direction In Stores July 31st

the starting line direction promo pic

Track Listing
01) Direction
02) 21
03) Are You Alone
04) Island
05) Hurry
06) Something Left to Give
07) Birds
08) Way With Words
09) I Could Be Wrong
10) Somebody’s Gonna Miss Us
11) Need to Love
12) What You Want

I’ve always been a big fan of The Starting Line and after hearing Direction I can honestly say that you will not be let down. If you liked this band in the past, you are going to love this album. Direction is the follow up to 2005’s Based on a True Story. This new record has some of the same feel as BOATS did but also has a new, more mature sound. Direction still has its pop punk sound but it also has its rock sound as well. Kenny’s vocals have matured so much since his “Say it Like You Mean it” days. Each song has its own feel to it and although some of the lyrics are a little weak, Ken does not hold back and tells you exactly how he feels. The Starting Line was going for an album with some simple structured songs, yet still holding your attention, and they have certainly done just that!

The album starts out with the title track “Direction.” Most of you have heard this song already on their Myspace page. It is a little harder look at what these guys can come up with. Direction is a great way to start out the album because it gets you moving right away. The song also grabs your attention because you aren’t used to hearing this harder feel that they have created. All and all you get the purpose of this track, which is The Starting Line is moving in a new ‘direction’ and if you don’t like it then you can take a hike.

Next up is “21.” The song title pretty much explains this song. It’s about the age 21 and doing things that a normal 21 year old would do, such as drinking. The background music is pretty poppy and has a nice feel to it. The chorus says it all “It’s seven and I’m already wasted, I’m 21 and I’m already hazy.”

Moving right along to track number three, which is titled “Are You Alone.” The song starts out with some crunchy guitar work and Kenny shouting out “We’re just everyday people.” The lyrics in this song are about feeling lonely. This song gets a little repetitive towards the end but it has a different feel to it and would be a good song to listen to as a motivational song if you were feeling lonely. This one gets the point across that everyone feels a little lonely sometimes and we have to realize that.

The single “Island” is probably my favorite song on this album. The Starting Line really picked a great single and if this gets the right radio play this song could become a huge hit! It’s currently on their Myspace for streaming. It’s a love song about sailing away with your lover to find a comforting place to stay and be with your special one. The song’s chorus is so catchy and so easy to sing along with!

“Hurry” is a great Pop Punk song that this band has been known to create. It’s probably the most poppy song on the album. With its catchy chorus and happy feeling, this one could become a top 4 favorite for you on this album!

In this song called “Something Left to Give,” you will hear how amazing Kenny’s voice has become and just how great of a singer this guy is! It’s a slower song that you will be blasting in your stereo during those warm summer evenings. At about 1:45 this song has a sound that you would hear on an Ace Enders (The Early November) album. The part is repeated throughout the ending of the song and I believe that is where Cove Reber (Saosin) makes his guest vocals come in. The chorus is a catchy sing a long song and the lyrics are about keeping those who we love close to us. Very well written song!

“Birds” is a song that sticks more to the rock sound. The song has a cool little build up before the chorus. You can hear some keys in this song, as on other songs, and they seem to play a pretty big rule in this one. There is a cool little key part during the verses, which makes the song sound full, and to its highest potential.

“Way With Words” is a song that could have been the closure song for this album. It has a pretty sweet breakdown at about 2:09 where Ken yells and then it goes into some slow guitar strumming with Kenny singing the chorus “You’ve lost your way with words, at least that’s what I heard.” Pretty catchy song after a few listens.

This next song has a very cool vibe to it. It’s titled “I Could Be Wrong.” The lyrics are well written and this one has a catchy chorus just as the others do. The lyrics are about standing up for what you believe in. It’s also about others turning away from their problems and not standing up for themselves. The backing vocals at the end of this song fit in so perfectly repeating, “I could be wrong.”

“Somebody’s Going to Miss Us” is a fun pop song that gets you dancing. The lyrics are written as if this band were to end and wondering what the reaction of the fans would be. Once you hear this album the reaction would be a very sad one if this band were to breakup! The lyrics could have been written a little better for this song but it gets the point across. The second verse made me laugh with its Ace of Base reference “All that she wants, is another baby.” There was a live video of this one floating around on the net that you might have seen.

“Need to Love” is a beautiful song that Ken wrote while on a train going from New Jersey to New York. I heard this song live a while back and I could not wait to hear this song as a studio recording. It’s very close to being my favorite song! You feel like you are sitting by Ken on the train in this one. The question “Do you need to love?” is repeated a bunch of times in this track. You will definitely be shouting out and asking your friends “Do you need to love?” after you hear this song. I catch myself singing it to myself very often. A catchy and very visual song!

The last track on Direction is titled “What You Want.” I heard this song a while back as well and it is all that I hoped it would be once they recorded it. It doesn’t take long to get this one stuck in your head. The chorus is another one that you will grasp a hold of and not let go for a long time! It starts out with some guitar picking and then heads straight in to the verse, where the chorus grabs a hold of you and doesn’t let go. The lyrics are written to say, “I want you to have this and I want you to enjoy it, because this is what I love.” (That is a direct quote of Kenny!)

Howard Benson, who produced this record, did a fantastic job! I hope that this review helped you get an idea of what is to come on July 31st when Direction hits stores. Direction will be released via Virgin Records.

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8 responses on "The Starting Line – Direction Album Review" »

Levi
Posted on June 6, 2007

Nice review Corey. :)

The album is different than some of their previous stuff, but I still like it.

Corey
Posted on June 6, 2007

Thanks stud!

nicci
Posted on June 6, 2007

WOW
Yeah no I’m mad I can’t wait too hear this new album. This reveiw was am amzing way to keep me waiting for another 2 months!

t
Posted on August 1, 2007

this cd sucks….”if you like the old sutff you will def like this” ….no.

bruce
Posted on August 30, 2007

Yea, every song is good…up until the bridge.

The cop-out-bridges really ruin this cd, and turn it from being timeless and lasting, to forgetable.

this doesnt have the staying power of BOATS or SILYMI.

But damn, did kenny learn how to write a chorus.

Nick
Posted on September 4, 2007

i’ve been so pumped to hear all the songs on this cd and the first was their single. and i was like…. well i like it, but just like their other cd’s i liked their stuff the most anyway….

unfortunately this didn’t hold true. i listened to the whole cd and direction and 21 really was the only one that kept me with it….

just doesn’t have that listen all the way through feel like the other albums and i really feel disappointed with it. never the less i anxiously look forward to anything else they put out. and maybe the songs will grow on me i dont know.

Ashley
Posted on March 7, 2009

I love this review, I completely agree with everything in this.

but one thing I hate about this review is when you said ‘Once you hear this album the reaction would be a very sad one if this band were to breakup! ‘
Because that’s what they did. :(

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