Hawk Nelson Is My Friend review by Hawk Nelson

logo Ultimate Guitar
  • Released: Apr 1, 2008
  • Sound: 7
  • Lyrics: 5
  • Overall Impression: 6
  • Reviewer's score: 6 Neat
  • Users' score: 7.1 (30 votes)
Hawk Nelson: Hawk Nelson Is My Friend
0

Sound — 7
Voted Favorite New Artist by CCM Magazine in their February 2006 Reader's Choice Awards, awarded Best Artist from Ignite Your Faith Magazine's Golden Ears Awards, and winning Modern Rock/Alternative Album of the Year from GMA Canada Covenant Awards for their second record Smile, It's The End Of The World, Canadian quartet Hawk Nelson had a lot to live up to for their third official full length. In terms of sound progression, there isn't really a difference between Smile, It's The End Of The World and Hawk Nelson Is My Friend. In fact, Hawk Nelson still maintain their poppy, audience-appealing sound on their third release, although they do sometimes delve into slightly heavier riffs (in a pop rock sense) on songs such as You Have What I Need. Elsewhere, the song Turn It On could be described as having a main riff resulting from a one night stand between the sounds of Rage Against The Machine and Blink-182, whilst Let's Dance has a somewhat Head Automatica-esque groove to it. The album balances out this new found heavy-riffed pop-rock with a required dose of slow meaningful songs such as Somebody Else, Not the Same and album closer I Still Miss You. Up to this point you may be asking Where are all the happy-go-lucky tracks that Hawk Nelson are famed for? Well, you're in luck as although the new album has doses off heavy and slow pop-rockiness, it also contains the chewy bubble-gum pop rock that pop fans expect, in the form of new single Friend Like That, Ancient History and Just Like That. These songs are sure to get you jumping and singing along in no time. If not, then buy yourself a new pair of ears you deaf muppet.

Lyrics — 5
The lyrics are as expected from any pop-rock or pop-punk album: filled with crap rhyming schemes and songs about failed love and rejection. But who says that lyrics have to be complicated and sophisticated? Ever heard of the saying less is more? This is exactly what is going on with Hawk Nelson Is My Friend. Let's be honest, Hawk Nelson are not renowned for their amazing rhyme schemes and classy lyrics, and that is fine because people don't expect it from them. Most of the time people listen to these pop-rock and pop-punk bands for their no-bullshit, straight-to-the-point lyrics, and for their happy feel-good instrumentals. What's the use in listening to a song and having to decipher lyrics that might as well be written in another language? The great thing about Hawk Nelson's lyrics is that they cut out the crappy cryptic Fall Out Boy-esque lyrics, and hit home with simple and identifiable ones. For example the song Just Like Me sings of how people bitch behind each other's backs, how everyone in nature is 'just like me', and how we should all try to be better people: 'You're just like me; I talk behind your back; From this confidence I lack; Now is the time to make things right; Yeah you're just like me' It is fairly obvious just by looking at the lyrics what the song is about, which is inevitably what you want in a song. Another track written in this style would be Ancient History with the lyrics: 'She don't want anything other than; She don't need anyone other than; She don't see anyone but herself; Herself' which, if you listened to the song the whole way through, is obviously about terminating a relationship with a girl who only cares for herself.

Overall Impression — 6
Overall, Hawk Nelson Is My Friend is a solid pop-rock record. It has catchy songs, great vocals, and lyrics that are able to connect with many people on various levels. Hawk Nelson's third offering is one that is sure to satisfy existing and new fans alike. Whether the songs on Hawk Nelson Is My Friend will live up to the expectations set by the hit singles Bring 'Em Out from the 2005 motion picture Yours, Mine, and Ours, and Letters To The President favorite Every Little Thing, well, only time can tell. What is for certain is that unless you're over thirty-five, there is no feasible excuse not to give this record at least one listen through. Although if you're the kind of person whose hobbies include standing in front of a mirror wearing only Y-fronts trying to see if you really can knock yourself out by starving your brain of blood through flexing your muscles, you are excused as you should probably get yourself to a mental asylum as soon as possible.

23 comments sorted by best / new / date

    gr1170
    This band is a joke. Did you know they write NONE of their own songs. Trever from Thousand Foot Krutch, the one who "discovered" them, writes all their music.
    fieryfenderz
    waken_noise wrote: trevor didn't write all of their songs you idiot! trevor and jason grew up in the same church so they have close ties with one another. when jason ask trevor to assisst them in writing their newest album ,cause they wanted a to bring a new sound to the table instead of repeating the same thing over and over and making everyone bored. and as far as the 'Christian-punk' think goes "Entropy"...they're christians with the punk look and sound just not the slutty crappy 'punk' belief of being so called 'rebels' so you can pull your top lip over your head and swallow your face or just to save you time how about put your foot in your mouth you jerk! if you don't like this band then don't freak'n comment on their stuff 'gr1170' !!! really lame screen name by the way...
    most of this was actually untrue... trevor basically made the past cd's for them... this past one though was more of Hawk Nelson with a little help from Trevor
    hnfan4eva
    gr1170 wrote: This band is a joke. Did you know they write NONE of their own songs. Trever from Thousand Foot Krutch, the one who "discovered" them, writes all their music.
    so this band is joke u say and yet u were the first to comment on this cd. loser i hate ur guts butthole
    hnfan4eva
    Skillet_Panhead wrote: gr1170 wrote: This band is a joke. Did you know they write NONE of their own songs. Trever from Thousand Foot Krutch, the one who "discovered" them, writes all their music. Entropy wrote: The funniest thing about this band is that they describe themselves as "Christian Punk" What an oxymoron... You know, people like you make me wonder if you just sit around waiting for a band you don't like to release new material so you can bash the crap out of them. And your opinions are completely irrelevant because of this. Hawk Nelson is a great band. So leave these guys alone. Not liking them is one thing. Calling them a joke is another, because they're anything but a joke. So what if Trevor co-writes the music. It's not Trevor you hear singing. It's not Trevor you hear playing. So shut up, plain and simple.
    i love you.
    Kirby123
    I like how a lot of these comments are completely mindless and false, such as:
    This band is a joke. Did you know they write NONE of their own songs. Trever from Thousand Foot Krutch, the one who "discovered" them, writes all their music.
    The funniest thing about this band is that they describe themselves as "Christian Punk" What an oxymoron...
    (Jason has previously mentioned that Hawk Nelson has written the songs for this album and others on other albums on a recent podcast and on a recent "ask the band" segment) anyways, this review is not all that great, as the lyrics in this album have great meaning, and the author, not being a christian (and a lot of the lyrics are christian themes), should not be reviewing this album. Get someone who has equal faith to review it.
    Skillet_Panhead
    gr1170 wrote: This band is a joke. Did you know they write NONE of their own songs. Trever from Thousand Foot Krutch, the one who "discovered" them, writes all their music.
    Entropy wrote: The funniest thing about this band is that they describe themselves as "Christian Punk" What an oxymoron...
    You know, people like you make me wonder if you just sit around waiting for a band you don't like to release new material so you can bash the crap out of them. And your opinions are completely irrelevant because of this. Hawk Nelson is a great band. So leave these guys alone. Not liking them is one thing. Calling them a joke is another, because they're anything but a joke. So what if Trevor co-writes the music. It's not Trevor you hear singing. It's not Trevor you hear playing. So shut up, plain and simple.
    hnfan4eva
    i think this is a great album...smile, its the end of the world is my favorite one, though. everyone seems to have stopped liking them since they got a little more pop than punk, but i like it that they experiment and try new things w/ their music unlike some bands who dont change a thing album after album. these guys deserve alot more than what some of the losers on this website are giving them.
    hnfan4eva
    whosamerica wrote: Entropy wrote: The funniest thing about this band is that they describe themselves as "Christian Punk" What an oxymoron... i suppose you think that punk means you dont believe in anything?.... pathetic ideal. as far as im concerned most of the people on this site are pissed off atheists with no positive outlook on life. so then wouldn't being a christian be the non-conforming thing to do? you lose. as for the album i dont really think its anyhting super amazing. but its good, or "solid" as the review says.
    u say they have no positive outlook on life and ur screen name is whosamerica. wow.
    hnfan4eva
    inferi596 wrote: oh no they've got a mainstream sound and have some good ol' christian messages in their music! just because they're a little more "pop" than most your bands on here doesn't mean they're terrible. they've got loads of talent, and as for them writing their own music, i don't know what your source is but i've heard otherwise from them saying, "we wrote this song about... because it meant to us..." i thought this was a great, catchy album that you just can't stop listening to the first few weeks after buying it. i definitely think the sound and impression rating on this album should be much higher, they've come a long way.
    THANK YOU someone here has half a mind and relizes that these guys rock!!! whats so bad about pop/rock anyway?? the beatles were pop!!! has every1 forgotton that??? it seems every1 today is either a rap fan or a rock fan. soulja boy vs. fall out boy geez cant we all just get along??? and yes, hawk nelson has come along way and just cuz theyre experimenting w/ new sounds doesnt mean they suck!!! these guys r my favorite band and have been for a while and they have earned every freakn second of it. btw, trevor COWRITES w/ them. and honestly, im not a big fan of his writing. he helps hawk nelson, but they make it their own style. and i think theyre way better that thousand foot crutch. that song "wish you well" that tfk does, drives me insane. WHAT DOES IT MEAN??? hey fieryfenderz why dont u ask him? ur his 'personal friend', cuz id really like to know. and i could be all wrong, cuz i really liked tfk b4 wish you well. so if u can give me a good explaination on what wish you well is all about, that would help me take them more seriously. and who the heck wrote this suckish review?? pretty much all he/she said was good things, and then rate it like a 5. so lets see here...gr1170, whosamerica, jakewynnrocks, Entropy, and XxGibsonSGxX, i hate u all and get a life. bottom line, Hawk Nelson rocks.
    hnfan4eva
    fieryfenderz wrote: actually, trevor helped on this last album, but im a personal friend of trevor, and he said he just provided suggestions for this cd, instead of really just taking over... this was mainly all Hawk Nelson, with the help of a few other collaborations with some writers... but they were involved with it all
    oh geez get a life'im a personal friend of trevors' yeah rite
    fieryfenderz
    actually, trevor helped on this last album, but im a personal friend of trevor, and he said he just provided suggestions for this cd, instead of really just taking over... this was mainly all Hawk Nelson, with the help of a few other collaborations with some writers... but they were involved with it all
    Entropy
    The funniest thing about this band is that they describe themselves as "Christian Punk" What an oxymoron...
    hnfan4eva
    gr1170 wrote: This band is a joke. Did you know they write NONE of their own songs. Trever from Thousand Foot Krutch, the one who "discovered" them, writes all their music.
    hey gr1170 ur life is a joke and if u dont at least love this band, u need to rip ur ears of and get urself a new pair u deaf worthless pile of dirt who has horrible taste in music and screen names. what do u listen to? techno remix bubblegum pop garbage? get a life jerk!
    fourpieceplayer
    For the most part waken_noise is right, Trevor does help them and is listed as a co-writer. but for the most part they write their own stuff. Oh ya and just because your music is labeld "punk" it shouldnt imply anything about your personality, ive met these guys before and theyre pretty much just normal people. maybe a little on the crazy side but whatever.
    chapaton3
    gr1170 wrote: This band is a joke. Did you know they write NONE of their own songs. Trever from Thousand Foot Krutch, the one who "discovered" them, writes all their music.
    your face is a joke. you are a dickhead. they have assistance in their music so yeah....get a life and appreciate good music.
    waken_noise
    trevor didn't write all of their songs you idiot! trevor and jason grew up in the same church so they have close ties with one another. when jason ask trevor to assisst them in writing their newest album ,cause they wanted a to bring a new sound to the table instead of repeating the same thing over and over and making everyone bored. and as far as the 'Christian-punk' think goes "Entropy"...they're christians with the punk look and sound just not the slutty crappy 'punk' belief of being so called 'rebels' so you can pull your top lip over your head and swallow your face or just to save you time how about put your foot in your mouth you jerk! if you don't like this band then don't freak'n comment on their stuff 'gr1170' !!! really lame screen name by the way...
    whosamerica
    Entropy wrote: The funniest thing about this band is that they describe themselves as "Christian Punk" What an oxymoron...
    i suppose you think that punk means you dont believe in anything?.... pathetic ideal. as far as im concerned most of the people on this site are pissed off atheists with no positive outlook on life. so then wouldn't being a christian be the non-conforming thing to do? you lose. as for the album i dont really think its anyhting super amazing. but its good, or "solid" as the review says.
    jakewynnrocks
    pretty much the only thing i liked about this album was that the cd case turned into a game board and the cd was the spinner. thats new
    inferi596
    oh no they've got a mainstream sound and have some good ol' christian messages in their music! just because they're a little more "pop" than most your bands on here doesn't mean they're terrible. they've got loads of talent, and as for them writing their own music, i don't know what your source is but i've heard otherwise from them saying, "we wrote this song about... because it meant to us..." i thought this was a great, catchy album that you just can't stop listening to the first few weeks after buying it. i definitely think the sound and impression rating on this album should be much higher, they've come a long way.
    Emerge Rawk
    I didn't know that Trevor wrote all thier songs. They make them sound good though. Trevor is an amazing song writer.
    Natrone
    paintballaddict wrote: this band is so awsome live. they are so freakin funny.
    Gonna have to agree on you with this. Since when does a lead singer wear a suit?