It's been almost five months since Skillet released one of their strongest records to date. Comatose was a daring and diverse step for the hard rock quartet, and the band's The Older I Get EP expands upon the original release by revisiting a few of the tracks as they release a new song to radio.
"The Older I Get" is a sentimental and melodic song about love and reconciliation. The EP, exclusive to iTunes, offers the track in three different versions - a rock radio mix, an acoustic version, and the Comatose version set to studio footage in a video format. The EP opens with the "Rock Radio Mix" of the title track, not displaying too much of a difference from the original, aside from the omission of an appealing drum loop after the second bridge and enhancing a shout from vocalist John Cooper near the song's end that is more muffled in the Comatose version. I can't say it's worth getting if you already have the full record, but if you're more familiar with the radio version, I could see wanting it. The "Acoustic Version" follows, stripping the song down to feature just an acoustic, Cooper's layered vocals and some percussion. Another one of the album's ballads, "Yours To Hold" gets the acoustic treatment as well, this time being enhanced with strings and subtle percussion. The EP then ends with the album version of "The Older I Get" presented as a video in widescreen format, showing clips of the members of Skillet goofing off in the studio, mixed with shots of Cooper recording the vocal track. Both the video and each of the acoustic versions are really the highlights of this EP, but with all of it adding up to just under five bucks, those who don't own Comatose can get the full eleven song album on iTunes for just under ten. Perhaps if some of the edgier songs ("Rebirthing," "The Last Night") were presented as acoustic versions instead or in addition, or if the ones on this EP were more uniquely different, the EP would be more of a must-have.
Skillet enthusiasts will eat up The Older I Get EP, even if the acoustic tracks and videos are really the only ones worth purchasing. A little pricey for what you get but still worth checking out, Skillet's The Older I Get EP is a modest addition to a record that served as a highlight of last year's releases.- Review date: 2/27/07, written by John DiBiase
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