Going from songs such as 'Criminal Energy' that make you want to get up and literally dance your heart out (I bet this song's brilliant performed live) to songs like 'Delivery' and '555' that drop the tempo, this album has something for everyone. Embracing the new sounds of mainstream radio but at the same time sticking to their old roots, I have high hopes that we will be seeing this album in the charts eventually.
"This is an album that is all about facing your depression and self-doubt head on and embracing life."
And don't even get me started on 'All the Way (Stay)' where not only do we have the classic guitars and drums, JEW really went there and gave us a sax. If that isn't iconic, I don't know what is. 'Surviving' doesn't have a one bad song but 'All the Way (Stay') has to be my favourite by far. Surviving is an album that builds on energy and emotion, it gives focus to the instruments and rhythm but not at the expense of the lyrics and the message of the album.
What makes this album special though is the story behind it. Jim Adkins, the lead guitarist and vocalist has spoke of how writing and producing this album helped him to confront the demons from his past: "I was a passenger in my own body for 36 years and never realised it...I didn't know it because I was letting a voice inside my head tell me all sorts of lies to continue life at the minimum. As I grow older that minimum got lower and then lower." This is particularly seen in the lyrics of the titular song 'Surviving' with the first lyrics being: "Don't hide your face, what you were before/It doesn't have to be you anymore." This is an album that is all about facing your depression and self-doubt head on and embracing life.
I cannot recommend this album enough. JEW are still very much at the top of their game. Surviving screams seize the day, live your life to the fullest, and while you're at it, listen to this album.
Rating: 4/5 stars