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Album Review: Scripted by Icon for Hire

posted Oct 28, 2011, 8:26 PM by Sarah Brehm   [ updated Nov 3, 2011, 5:10 PM ]

Icon for Hire may be relatively new to the scene, but their infectious techno-pop-punk-rock sound—embodied in front-woman Ariel’s hot-pink hair and eccentric, rock style—has been blasting through speakers and into the hearts of teens and twenty-somethings. This Tooth & Nail Records band’s debut album Scripted is nearly impossible to stop listening to once you press play.

 

The short instrumental intro “Overture” transitions straight into the song “Theater.” Ariel sings, “My life is a musical; I know how to put on a pretty pathetic show. I hide backstage, keep the curtains closed, cause I’m scared, I’m scared.” As Christians, sometime we feel like we have to put on a show for others, that we have to act. We’re afraid that if people saw who we really are, then their judgmental eyes would burn a hole in us. Ariel decides that it’s time to take action: “I’m gonna burn this theater down and pray to God for the strength to help me face the crowd. I wanna live like I lost the script and scream every line like ‘this is it!’” It’s time for us Christians to stop acting, to stop following the script and just live!

 

Following the same theme of taking action, “Make a Move,” Icon for Hire’s first single off the album, challenges listeners to “make a move!” One line in particular really stands out: “Pointing my fingers, the problems still linger. They keep getting bigger, and I hold the trigger.” Have you ever thought “someone should do something about this-and-that”? Well, why didn’t you do whatever “this-and-that” was? Pointing out a problem isn’t going to solve it; instead do something about it—make a move!

 

“Get Well” seems to be about human nature. “We throw tantrums like parties. We’re not happy ‘til everyone knows we’re sick. And that’s just how we like it. We’ve hurt bad enough, right, we’ve earned it.” What do we watch on the news? The “bad” stuff—the scandals, the murders, the crimes. What do people post on Facebook and Twitter? The “bad” stuff—the emotional suffering from bad relationships, depression, sadness. Why? Because that’s what we, as humans, love to hear, love to read about, the sick and twisted and depressed world. But Ariel screams “And all we’ve got left is a sorry pile of hearts. I’m getting out, gonna write myself a new start. Come on dry your eyes, meet me on the other side. Run as fast as you can and we’ll make it out alive. We know better now. We don’t have to live like this. Go tell them all we don’t have to live like this!”  Life doesn’t have to be sick and twisted and sad. It’s time to “get well” and start a new life!

 

“The Grey” slows down your racing heart from the previous rocking songs. It, and “Only a Memory” are the ballads on Scripted. “The Grey” starts off with the line: “I am standing on the edge of returning or just running away.” This song is about struggling with your relationship with God. “How cold have I become? I didn’t want to lose you by what I’ve done, caught in the grey.” It’s a powerful song that in the end, reminds that God loves us, no matter what. We can always come back to Him.

 

I love the chorus to “Off With Her Head”—“Don’t let go cause I don’t wanna be this, I don’t wanna be this. Death is mine, I know. Don’t let go, don’t let go. Save your own cause I don’t wanna be this, I don’t wanna be this. Death is mine, I know. Don’t let go, don’t let go, Savior.” Like “Get Well” this song is about overcoming sin. Ariel is calling out for the Savior to not let go of her.

 

“Fight” follows the theme of defeating sin and being who you are. “I’ll fight, fight, or be taken out alive. Nowhere to run, nowhere to hide. Standing on the edge, am I better off dead? How could I forget that I’m better than this? I’ve come too far to fade tonight. Fight, or be taken alive!” You can let go of whatever is holding you back. You can fight!

 

“Up in Flames” is one of my favorite tracks on Scripted. “I waited too long letting people like you tell me what they want and what I shouldn’t do. So mark me with words, but you can’t tie my hands.” Don’t let people tell you who you should be. Don’t let people belittle you for who you are. Stand up and believe in yourself.

 

“Iodine” is about how we sometimes say we want to change our lives, but fall right back into old, unhealthy habits. “Crazy is, I believe, the medical term when we wanna recover but we don’t wanna learn. Keep breaking what’s been fixed a thousand times and, give me some more of that iodine.” Sometimes we do things that we know we shouldn’t, but we continue to do it. Ariel continues: “I say I wanna be happy but I quickly forget when I sabotage all the good I’ve got left. Depression’s like a big fur coat; it’s made of dead things, but it keeps me warm.” Great song!

 

“Only a Memory,” the second ballad, appears to be about a getting over a bad, personal relationship. “You will bleed for what your hands have done. You can’t outrun your ending. And I’ll get well long before you let yourself. I may forgive you, but you never will.”

 

The final track, “Pieces” ends Scripted with a fast-paced, pop-rock bang! It’s all about picking up the pieces of your past. You have to do this before you can move on.

 

Overall, I highly recommend Scripted by Icon for Hire. Comprised of Ariel, guitarist Shawn Jump, and drummer Adam Kronshagen, Icon for Hire reminds me of a mix between RED, Flyleaf, Paramore, with a hint of Family Force Five thrown in. In an interview with NewReleaseTuesday.com, Ariel says, “There’s a tension really between heavy rock and pop, but never at the expense where it would overshadow the rock side. The pop part is like the sprinkles on top of a heavy cake, but the actual cake is rich, dark and heavy.” (http://www.newreleasetuesday.com/artistdetail.php?artist_id=3122)

 

So go have some cake and rock out!

 

 

Words by: Sarah Brehm
 
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Icon for Hire "Make a Move" music video

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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