One of the rarest astronomical phenomena, known as the transit of Venus, occurs when Venus passes directly between the Earth and the Sun, and can then be seen as a black dot moving across the sun. For Canadian rock band Three Days Grace, their new album “Transit of Venus” looks to make the same impression on the rock community as the actual occurrence does on the world.
The band has already acquired a great deal of success on their three previous albums, with a string of number one songs and albums going platinum, double platinum and gold. Even with all of their early success, Three Days Grace has stuck to their roots creating the same kind of music they made on their first album “Three Days Grace,” while maturing along the way.
Lead vocalist Adam Gontier, percussionist Neil Sanderson, bass guitarist Brad Walst and lead guitarist Barry Stock continue to stretch their talents on every album. “Transit of Venus” continues this trend. Gontier is known for his high tenor vocals, but at times steps out of his comfort zone with more melodic vocals, losing the grunge tone in his voice. At times it appears that Gontier needs to stretch his vocal abilities to accomplish this, but he successfully accomplishes it every time, allowing the band to create traditional Three Days Grace songs, but with a slight twist. The tracks “Give Me a Reason” and “Time that Remains” are prime examples of this.
Gontier was not the only member taking a risk with a new concept, but the whole band can be heard pushing their limits throughout the album. One of the biggest risks the band took on as a whole is covering the Michael Jackson song “Give In to Me.” They were once again successful in their venture, as it was one of the best tracks on the album. Gontier stands out on vocals, even hitting Jackson’s traditional high-pitched “woo” at one point. Combined with Stock’s powerful riffs, they truly make the song their own, even adding a blues feel to it.
The first single from the album, “Chalk Outline”, really gave the fans an idea of what to expect on the album. It is an excellent example of the new direction the band took. The intro to the song is nothing like any other Three Days Grace song and dances on the edge of a Dubstep-like sound, with loud bass and screeching guitar riffs. It is one of the most aggressive songs on the album, and the best choice for first single.
With any new album, changes or differences are expected from previous albums, and Three Days Grace always has the right amount of change in each album and still continues the trends that have worked with previous albums. Their essence has not changed from the first album with their songs still containing themes of dealing with pain, relationships, personal problems and society’s issues. They take these themes and turn them into great ballads, such as previous songs like “Home,” “Animal I Have Become” and “Riot.” “Transit of Venus” has songs that mirror these ballads like “Chalk Outline,” “Give In to Me,” “Happiness” and “Expectations.” Each song makes a strong statement which clearly gets the band’s emotions across.
All 13 songs on the album represent the maturity the band has achieved over the years, and are also true Three Days Grace songs to their core. Even the album cover sets the tone of how the band has grown and what to expect from the album. Once the cover is pulled away, amazing abstract art work is revealed. The slogan for the album was, “Some things will never happen again in your life time.” This represents the essence of “Transit of Venus” well because it seems to be Three Days Grace’s greatest album yet.
-Published in The Oswegonian