The fourth studio album from American rock band Red, Release The Panic, seeks to incorporate everything that has made their previous albums so successful on the music scene. Known for the Christian aspect of their music, Red have differentiated themselves from mainstream rock bands with the haunting and meaningful messages they try to send across, and this trend is continued by Release The Panic.
Religious connections aside, “Hold Me Now” is truly a beautiful composition, not only lyrically, but instrumentally as well. Here, Red stray away from their typical aggressive style of play, and every aspect of the track seems calm and non-aggressive (at least compared to the rest of the album). Vocally, there is much less yelling and screaming, as lead singer Michael Barnes composes himself to deliver a very emotive and spiritual performance. “So Far Away” excels in a similar manner, as Red tone down the overall decibel level of their singing, allowing their tender message to be wholly absorbed by the listener.
“Die For You” is one of the few tracks on the album relating to relationships and love, and it is this romantic contrast that sets it apart. A perfect way to describe the track would be to label it as a musical “blitzkrieg”—such is the level of the force and tenacity behind its guitar solos.
Red have proven once again that they have a formula that works. While a good chunk of the record may be too rough and contain too much screaming for some listeners’ liking, Release The Panic succeeds. Comparisons can be made between Red and other mainstream rock bands such as Linkin Park, but Red are really in a ballpark of all their own. The variety of their music and the emotional response Release The Panic so effortlessly eases out of its listeners is truly something to behold.