The personal trials of former Creed frontman Scott Stapp have been well-documented over the years, from substance abuse struggles to mental illness. He has worked hard to overcome these challenges, and it is through this lens that The Space Between The Shadows was born.
Stapp brings a level of energy and passion to his third album that is consistent with what Creed fans became accustomed to hearing on songs like “One Last Breath” and “What’s This Life For.” The Space Between The Shadows kicks off with a rocker in “World I Used To Know.” Vocally, Stapp is still firing on all cylinders as he demonstrates his range out of the gate. As is evident throughout, this song sets the stage for a theme of dealing with and overcoming pain and trials, while he returns to his grunge/alt rock roots.
“Name” is a passionate song that is both a reminiscent reflection of what it feels like to be fatherless, wrapped up in a promise not to repeat the past.
“Purpose For Pain” is an anthemic celebration about seeking and finding meaning in pain and trials. The song is sure to be an instant hit among fans and features an impressive guitar solo. The verse talks about a battle, while the chorus is drawing lines in the sand and staking claim to fighting on.
There’s gotta be more
‘Cause this life is insane
Gotta turn this around
And find the purpose for pain
There’s so much to lose
Yeah, there’s so much at stake
Gotta turn this around
And find the purpose for pain.
No Scott Stapp album would be complete without a few southern rock ballads. “Heaven In Me” is the first of these, a beautifully composed and performed piece about finding good and positive inside despite having made mistakes. “Red Clouds” is another southern rock ballad that continues with the theme of being cleansed and overcoming a storied past. The chorus talks about a washing rain to set us free.
The album quickly shifts back into high gear with “Survivor.” The theme and sound on this make it difficult not to draw comparisons to “Overcome” by Creed. While “Overcome” was about having a right to come back from despair, “Survivor” is about having actually done so.
“Wake Up Call” and “Mary’s Crying” are ballads that provide moments of quiet reflection and meditation on an otherwise intense album. Then Stapp keeps the party rocking with my favorite tune on the album, “Face Of The Sun.” For me, this song is about chasing your dreams and living your best life even if everyone around you says it’s impossible.
Fly like a flame through the face of the sun
Rise with the fire till the battle is won
Blind to what the world says can never be done
Fight until the end
In the name of love.
As the project takes a turn into the final stretch, “Gone Too Soon” is a goodbye to a loved one who passed on to eternity, reflecting on missed chances to connect and looking forward to joining them in heaven. That solemn tune is followed by “Ready To Love,” a declaration that it is time to love those around us well while we have the chance.
“Last Hallelujah” closes out the album as a testimony of Stapp’s beliefs. The second verse is a clear declaration of faith:
“Walking on water in a raging storm
I could see the face of a man with a crown of thorns
In the distance I can hear a voice
And it’s calling me, it’s calling me.”
The Space Between The Shadows is Scott Stapp at his best as he delivers thought-provoking stories of facing life struggles of many kinds, while weaving together messages of faith, hope, and love to provide solid ground on which to fight these battles.
Related Artists: Creed, Alter Bridge, Eric Van Zant