One of the most popular adult-alternative acts to emerge in the wake of Coldplay's runaway success, the Fray became a mainstream radio fixture in late 2005 with similarly sensitive anthems on its debut, HOW TO SAVE A LIFE, most notably the emotive hit title track. Fronted by singer/pianist Isaac Slade, the Denver, Colorado-based group is one of many piano-led rock acts--along with Five for Fighting, Aqualung, and Keane--to emerge about the same time.
Enhanced Australian pressing of this single, pulled from the Denver band''s album of the same name. Since the album''s release in 2005, sales have continued to grow based on word-of-mouth praise from fans, great reviews and a strong internet presence. Features three versions of ''How To Save A Life'': New Album Version, Acoustic Version and Enhanced Video. Epic. 2006.
On their full-length debut, Denver quartet the Fray don''t exactly reinvent the wheel, but those looking for melodic, mid-tempo pop could do far worse. That said, the 12 songs on Top 40 hit How To Save a Life are barely distinguishable from each other. If you like one, you''ll probably like the rest (and you''ll be in the company of thousands of other listeners.) If you don''t like one, it''s unlikely the others will change your mind. Formed in 2002 and signed by Epic in 2004, the band consists of Isaac Slade (vocals, piano), Joe King (guitar, vocals), Ben Wysocki (drums), and Dave Welsh (guitar). Since their formation, the Fray have elicited comparisons to British groups like Coldplay and Keane, and American ones like Counting Crows and the Wallflowers. They''ve also toured with Weezer and Ben Folds and had songs--like first single "Over My Head (Cable Car)"--featured on such popular programs as Grey''s Anatomy. Though they incorporate guitar, unlike Keane, Slade''s expert piano playing is prominent on every track. To his credit, he can also hit the high notes just as gracefully as Coldplay''s Chris Martin, but therein lies the rub: As with the band as a whole, Slade hasn''t quite found his own voice yet. How To Save a Life is polished and professional, bland and inoffensive. It goes down easy, but evaporates into the ether just as quickly. --Kathleen C. Fennessy
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