It's time to rejoice! Texas rock group Abandon have (or more accurately, Forefront Records)
finally released a full-length album. However, most of the songs are taken from their previous two EPs, Abandon and
Abandon II. There are four new tracks, but that's all: everything else has been previously released.
Abandon kind of sounds like old-school The Killers meets Sanctus Real. In a way, that really works to their advantage,
and it's especially evident within the first few seconds of the opening track. The synth-laden, driving electric guitars
and pounding drums hit the musical sweet spot quite well. Unlike The Killers, Abandon's lyrics are not suggestive, and in fact
deal with themes of redemption, forgiveness, brokenness, and love. Musically, Searchlights is predominantly weighted
toward rock anthems, but there are a few times when Abandon slow things down a bit. Quite frankly though, I don't think
"quiet rock ballads" are their forté. listening to songs like "Here We Are Now" and "Your Love Lifts Me Up" are rather
unpleasantly reminiscent of many composed-by-numbers pop-worship groups. But it's not all like that, thankfully; most of the
tracks have an energetic, almost epic feel to them. Also, just note that only four of the tracks (as mentioned earlier) are
new: "Confession," "Here We Are Now," "Safe In Your Arms," and "Your Love Lifts Me Up." However, the entire album is a nice
collection of songs for those that don't already own both of the previous Abandon EPs.
So, is it worth delving into Abandon's latest? Ultimately yes, unless you happen to own both EPs, in which case purchasing
the entire album would be a bit of a waste. Instead, I'd recommend just getting the new songs off iTunes or Amazon's mp3
store. Also, there are four tracks missing from the previous EPs, so if you don't own the EPs but wanted some of the songs
that didn't make it to the LP, take note of this fact. In closing, Abandon's Searchlights - while nothing stellar -
is quite an enjoyable rock album, and is worth checking out. Let's hope that their next release improves even more upon the
- Review date: 9/2/09, written by Adam Dawson of Jesusfreakhideout.com
Since early 2008, Abandon has been floating around the music scene with a
few EPs which have allowed spectators to see what this San Antonio-based alt-pop rock group is capable of.
On the band's full-length national debut on Forefront, Searchlights, Abandon offers their best and most
popular tracks like the aggressive rock song “Providence,” the softer, electronically influenced “City Lights,”
and the good “Hold On.” Of the four new tracks, “Confession” is probably the best with its alt-rock twist and great
echoing background vocals. And like much of the album, “Safe In Your Arms” and “Here We Are Now” are solid pop rock
tracks, but are not absolutely overwhelming. Throughout Abandon’s album, the lyrics contain praise and worship
overtones while communicating complex lyrics which, at times, are taken right out of Scripture. Some may question
the wisdom of releasing a 12 track album which only has four new songs on it, but Searchlights is finally
an album that this promising band can reference.
- Nathaniel Schexnayder