While many live in blissful ignorance of the world’s rising issues and problems, that does not address the fact that they’re still happening all around us. Between increasing tensions in the Ukrainian war, the social and political discord that’s happening worldwide, and the ever-accelerating effects of climate change, things aren’t going great. Thus, The Star Prairie Project has decided the world needs a bit of a reality check through their latest album, Fight Or Flight.
Decked out in various flavors of rock but carrying heavy messages against the end of the world as we know it, Fight or Fight is a call to action. It rallies the oblivious, opening their eyes to what’s truly happening in the world around us. It wants to show us the effects of those perpetuating the deeds ruining the world while highlighting how inaction can be just as bad in these cases.
Band leader Nolen R. Chew Jr. claims the album is trying to “capture the chaos, confusion, and anxiety of the current times,” and we’re inclined to agree. From the opening track “Reality Check Time,” all the way down to the emotional powerhouse of a closer, “The Rain Is Falling,” every song here encapsulates one of the significant issues the world is facing right now. There’s a sense of helplessness, but themes of hope shine throughout, and overall it makes for a profoundly intriguing but tumultuous listen.
Like all good concept albums, the music matches the themes the album tries to convey. Every song is catchy despite the underlying darkness, but also with a hint of chaos in the mix. Many different instruments are thrown into the mix, resulting songs sounding quite busy sometimes, though never overwhelmingly so. Production is also generally great, with vocals and instruments always finding a nice balance.
“Sweet Revenge,” in particular features an absolutely killer guitar solo that’s too good to ignore. For fans of rock music in general, you’ll find the slight genre shift with each song quite exciting. The Star Prairie Project does an excellent job changing things up now and then, and the 12-song run ends up quite engaging.
Overall, Fight Or Flight is a great concept album executed well, with all the panache and presence you’d expect from globetrotting power rock bands. The Star Prairie Project hit the nail on the head with this release, both musically and conceptually. As a call to action and a plain old good time, it stands out by and large.