It is not uncommon for trends to develop in music over time. For Tooth & Nail Records, the most recent trend has been to re-release every album after only a few months on the market. With new songs, unreleased tracks and other bonus features, this might seem like a really good idea, but what it really does is leave listeners wondering whether to buy an album when it is released, or just wait until the re-release a few months later and get more for the same price. While record labels such as Tooth & Nail expect both copies to be purchased by everyone, this tends to be expensive, if not unnecessary, and so a choice must be made on whether to wait, or if the wait is even worth it. With The Fold however, they tried something new and decided to re-release their debut album online, exclusively through iTunes, entitled This Too Shall Pass (Special Edition). Not only does this create an opportunity to buy the entire album, but also to just purchase the 4 previously unreleased songs, which probably benefits everyone in the long run.
Three of the songs included on the Special Edition are brand new and one of them is a demo track of a song that made it to the album. For "new" songs, "Away," "Seasons," and "Once and For All," sound very similar to what The Fold has already put out. While they don't contain the same energy that perhaps the first five tracks seem to (which were handled by a different producer and mixer), they are on par with the remaining songs on the original album. Expect nothing less than near pop-rock perfection and a proclamation of faith from not only these songs, but also from the entire record. With introspective lines such as "there's no one in this world, who will not let you down," from the song "Seasons" and "my faith is small inside this world, how I need a touch from You," from "Once and For All," The Fold clearly shows a longing to share their faith with others by doing what they do best; playing music and praising God.
The remaining song, an early version of "Rid of Me," is basically the same song it was before. Although it clocks in at a little longer than the original, it remains wholly unchanged and fundamentally probably just lacks the production of the album version. Still, a few changes are noticeable, such as a slightly altered intro and a few changed harmonies and echoes, but these changes do not add up to much of a difference. This song is still impressive lyrically in stating, "here's to letting go, here's to letting go, of all that held me down," which is something that seems obvious, but is a lesson that is often forgotten.
For a re-release, it seems as though Tooth & Nail has finally gotten it right. With the option to not only hear the original album, which is gem in itself, the four additional songs just sweeten the deal. This Too Shall Pass (Special Edition) is an excellent addition to The Fold's growing catalog and is a promising glimpse at what may be to come.- Review date: 1/10/07, written by Flip Choquette
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