Skillet – Comatose Comes Alive [CD+DVD]

 

Band: Skillet
Album: Comatose comes ALIVE
Genre: Christian Rock
Label: Ardent

Tracks:
1. Intro
2. Comatose
3. Whispers In The Dark
4. Collide
5. Forsaken
6. The Older I Get
7. The Last Night
8. Better Than Drugs
9. Those Nights
10. Yours To Hold
11. Rebirthing
12. My Obsessions
13. Angels Fall Down
14. Savior
15. Best Kept Secret 
16. Live Free or Let Me Die [B-Side] 

These days, regardless of genre or beliefs, having a long lasting career is something to admire. Where going platinum use to be the pinnacle of a career, not simply having a career is the goal. Too many bands are flash in the pan acts who barely survive one or two album cycles, but this band, Skillet, is not that way. Twelves year together and still rocking as hard as ever, these guys [and girls] have struck a chord with the religious world and have been attempting to cross into the mainstream for a few album nows, but only recently has it shown success. This latest release, Comatose Comes Alive, is a look into the live world of the band with beautiful production and camera work, but before I go any farther, let me say this: A Skillet is not your parent’s Christian band. Through heavy electronics, keys, distortion, gang vocals, and an awesome stage tech, Skillet brings us one of the best live albums of the year if not one of the best of the still young millennium . 

I find it hard to really review a live album/dvd with a track by track breakdown, so we’ll just go by disc. The first one is obviously the cd version of the live show and it’s produced beautifully. The crowd clammer pulls you in as the show begins with a simple violin intro and then is faded just right to allow the band to swell overtop of the chants.  The band focuses heavily on Comatose songs, which while not  begin from my favorite album of the band, sound much better in this live setting. Even without the visuals, you can feel the crowd getting more than what they paid for. Everything is bigger than on the record and when the band slips in a fan favorite [“Best Kept Secret,” “Savior,” My Obsession”] you can almost feel the crowd become laced with pandaemonium. The B-side is alright, but unnecessary for the album as it stands solid with just the performance. The band did add some enhanced material on the disc as well with acoustic performances of 5 tracks that you should definitely not miss.

Even though the disc stands firmly on its own, I  must say the DVD is what makes this worth your money. It’s shot so well that you can tell the band spared no expense or moment of time bringing it to their fans. The live video sounds exactly as great as the album and the camera switches are flawless and glorious throughout. There’s some artistic lighting effects used as well that just take it all to a new level. The band uses many stage effects to enhance the performance and what was just background crunches on the album can now be seen in all their glory. This band knows how to put on a live show and it’s proven here. The extras include some videos, a making the video segment,  and a slide show. It’s not the best, but the footage is solid enough that you won’t really mind.

Skillet is a band I think everyone should experience at least once. Their music is heavy, yet deep and the religious aspects are placed in such a way that even non believers can appreciate their musical skills. Comatose Comes Alive is a stunning display of both the band’s musical and theatrical abilities and is sure to be a work you come back to again and again. Fans of the band will surely eat this up, but if you’ve never heard of Skillet, this may be your best chance as everything they’re great at is displayed here. Give it a shot, you never know what you’ll find. 

*Written By: James Shotwell*

Grade:  7.5/10

James Shotwell

James Shotwell is the founder of Under The Gun Review. He loves writing about music and movies almost as much as he loves his two fat cats. He's also the co-founder of Antique Records and the Marketing Coordinator for Haulix. You should probably follow him on Twitter.

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  • Well said, finally a good report on this stuff

  • Helwyr

    I think I’m in this picture. AWESOME concert.