The Miracle - Not Just Words (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

The Miracle

Not Just Words (2006)

Still Life

Not that it needs to be said, but North Americans tend to listen nearly exclusively to North American music, at least in the punk/hardcore scene. Yeah, I know who the Beatles are. But it's times like this that make me extra proud to wave my Europunk badge in front of my friends who in all likelihood would never had heard the Miracle if I hadn't been talking them up all week. It's certainly not the Miracle's fault that they're not one of the most popular hardcore bands on this side of the pond, though. If it were up to me they'd have their name on the back of every shirt I see at all ages shows these days.

The Miracle have only been around since 2004, but the members have all played in other bands, including Fumbles in Life, Shotgun Formation, and Frontside. Although I can't say to have ever heard these bands, I do know the Miracle is a better name than any of their past projects. They released an EP late last year and soon found themselves sharing the stage with bands like Champion, Comeback Kid, the Promise, and Zao. It's remarkable that this full-length has come out so soon.

Musically, the Miracle borrow from some of my favorite bands right now. They play fast, melodic, and for lack of a better word (can writers even take that cop-out?) passionately. There are some moments that bring in the super-heaviness, but for the most part they keep things moving smoothly while avoiding forced breakdowns. The vocals, care of Fabio, also remind me of some of my favorite bands at the moment such as Comeback Kid and With Honor, complete with group vocals on songs like "My Rights," "No Fights" and "Not Just Words."

Lyrically, the Miracle have their hearts in the right place, but they seem to fall short a little bit, while Fabio mostly focuses his anger on those who don't believe he can live the life he chooses to or have betrayed him. A lot of the songs have a negative tone, which I've never been a huge fan of. My favorite bands are able to criticize what is deserving of such treatment, but also serve to portray a sense of hope or highlight the best things life has to offer, something the Miracle only begins to do -- though when they do, they do it well. "Not Just Words" is a perfect example of this:

Another day another town, new faces and places. We can't wait to play and destroy the stage, we don't know where we'll spend the night and where we'll be tomorrow. But we just don't care. That's what this music means to us, but it's something you'll ever understand. It's not just words for us. We don't give a fuck about what's cool or not, about hype bands and shows. We leave all that shit up to all of you suckers, we're honest and proud and that's what counts. What counts.
Actually, maybe that should have been my review.