Album Review: Parachutes by Frank Iero and the Patience


Liz Keller

By Liz Keller ’17, Arts and Entertainment Editor

An eclectic blend of harsh punk and soft, sad songs, Frank Iero and the Patience’s Parachutes masterfully covers the difficult topics of depression, low self-esteem, and how it feels to be hurt by someone you once loved. Though Iero was previously in emo band My Chemical Romance, he returns to his roots in New Jersey punk band Pencey Prep with this album. The band consists of vocalist and guitarist Frank Iero, guitarist Evan Nestor, bassist Steve Evetts, and drummer Matt Olsson. The album starts off heavy with “World Destroyer” a desperate, pained song. It invokes the fear that you are a “slave to your past” and will never be able to escape it. “Veins! Veins!! Veins!!!” is a sort of recovery after “World Destroyer”: it portrays a sense of healing but also the bad feelings that come along with it. It asks the question: What are you giving up in order to get “better”?

“I’m A Mess” is an upbeat punky track about accepting who you are and not trying to conform. Unlike the first two, this song has a stronger chorus and is followed by an amazing bass line after the second chorus. Whereas “I’m A Mess” is upbeat, “They Wanted Darkness…” is a much softer song. It starts out sounding like Ozzy Osbourne’s “Crazy Train” and then morphs into a gentle melody about being destroyed by someone you once loved. “I’ll Let You Down” is the effect of the actions in “They Wanted Darkness….” It shows the nearly non-existent self-esteem of someone who has been stabbed in the back by the person that was their everything.

Following along the lines of “Veins! Veins!! Veins!!!”, “Remedy” discusses the dichotomy of recovery and the parts of it that aren’t as healthy and perfect as people might think. However, the upbeat tone of the song clearly demonstrates that it is something you have to go through in order to get better. “Dear Percocet, I Don’t Think We Should See Each Other Anymore” is a high-energy song that shows what it feels like to be self-conscious and struggle with depression. The song has some of the most complex guitar parts on the album.

A complete change of pace, “Miss Me” is an almost acoustic-sounding song about love. Here, love is a struggle but is well worth it. The song details the struggle of being in a long-distance relationship, which is often exacerbated by mental illness. The next track, “Oceans”, is also a love song. This song is a bit funkier than the heavy punk songs that dominate the album. While this features self-doubt, it also speaks about being able to find good in the bad, even in people. It was released as a single after the band was in a bus accident and had to cancel the remainder of their Australian Tour, though all members are fine now.

For me, “The Resurrectionist, or “an Existential Crisis in C#” is the most musically pleasing track on the album. Aside from the witty title, it details the feeling of depression with an accuracy that can only be done by someone who has felt it. “Viva Indifference” follows along the same lines as “The Resurrectionist”, but brings love into the mix. A slower, lighter song, it portrays that while love can bring great joy to one’s life, the numbness of depression can be all-consuming. Without a doubt “9-6-15” is the saddest song of the album. Dominated by guitar and bass for the first half of the track, it covers the loss of a mentor and the self-doubt that can come with trying to live up to him. More than anything else, this song is a eulogy and a memorial for him.