Long awaited and highly anticipated within his own fanbase and his corner of the punk genre, Frank Iero has finally returned with a new band, newer sound, and the most honest record to be released in 2019 in the form of Barriers.
Following 2016’s Parachutes, which he released with his last project The Patience, Iero has upped his own personal ante with Frank Iero And The Future Violents. Listeners know that Iero has his own way of twisting and turning his thoughts and innermost emotions into the roughest, rawest, and most relatable pieces of music for the right audience that would need it. From the frustrated to the heartbroken to the guiltiest, Iero always seems to have a track for everyone. He’s managed to bring this talent up a level with Barriers and a more refreshed sound than before.
It can be difficult to put the right words into explaining what the overall tone of Barriers is. Iero sings and screams of his most in-depth thoughts and perceptions of his life, and each track takes its turn in being more positive and uplifting or more negative and regrettable. From the inspirational, religiously toned opening track “A New Day’s Coming” to the more personal remorse-laced tune “Six Feet Down Under,” there is no hiding, no disguising, and especially no downplaying what this record gives to the world.
This can be considered the main aim behind Iero’s intentions of writing Barriers. He wanted to put out what’s been playing in his head all this time since promoting Parachutes to now. Iero tends to lead a musical career of rebirth and reincarnation; he’s always bringing life to new art, living it and raising it high, and then leaving it to settle as he begins again. And the cycle forever will continue if he can bring something exciting to the table with every new era and every new breath of life. That’s why Barriers is determined to raise the bar that little bit higher for Iero and even for the other musicians involved in The Future Violents.
In all honesty, there’s so much that can be dissected and read into with this album – almost every lyric has this subliminal feeling to it, like it invites the listener to read between the lines and guess, decipher, and analyse every line and every verse to find what lies in the shadows of Iero’s life. There’s no doubt that a great amount of the subject matter within Barriers is behind the scenes – if based on true events- because it’s one of the healthiest and most creative ways Iero has ever dealt with his rollercoaster life of rising fame and downfalls. He’s inviting everyone to have a peek and read a page of his own diary in a way by putting so much heart and weaving many memories into Barriers.
Overall, it’s no exaggeration to call Barriers one of the standout albums of the year. There is so much to it at face value and yet so much that can still be unpacked and looked into. It’s a record that’ll keep listeners interested and entertained but will keep fans busy with figuring out the key to any codes Iero has thrown into his genius lyrics. Worth one listen. Then another. And then another.