Ranking All the Breaking Benjamin Studio Albums
Breaking Benjamin is a notable rock band of the 2000s. It is centered on its lead singer Benjamin Burnley, who inspired its name because he once broke a borrowed microphone. Breaking Benjamin has undergone some significant changes over the course of its existence. For example, the one that is famous isn’t the first band to bear the name. Instead, it is the second, having reclaimed the name from its predecessor because Burnley still had promotional stickers bearing the name. Similarly, it should be mentioned that Burnley is the one band member who has been with the band since the beginning. Something that can be explained by the fact that he was the one who held on to the band name when the band members fell out with one another in the early 2010s. Still, Breaking Benjamin has managed to put a total of six studio albums, which have made it a name of note in its chosen segment of the music industry.
Ember is Breaking Benjamin’s most recent release, having come out in 2020. For those who are curious, Burnley was the one who wrote most of Dark Before Dawn on his own, which is perhaps unsurprising considering how the earlier version of the band had broken up. However, he did work with the other band members on writing the song “Never Again,” which proved to be such a positive experience that he decided that every single one of the band members should work on the follow-up. On the whole, Ember met with a positive response. It was heavier than its predecessors, but at the same time, it remained true to the path laid out by those same predecessors. This is important because both of which were demanded by the listenership, which would explain much about its reception. In any case, while Ember does seem to have further cemented public confidence in the new version of Breaking Benjamin, its release was too recent to form an unbiased opinion.
“Polyamorous” predates Saturate. In short, Breaking Benjamin started attracting attention when a radio station DJ put the song on rotation. The song proved to be popular, so much so that said individual proceeded to finance the recording of an EP. A work that proceeded to sell every single one of the 2,000 copies that were printed. Thanks to this, Breaking Benjamin took a major step towards being signed, as shown by how they proceeded to play at a showcase for more than a dozen record companies. This led to Saturate, which wasn’t as successful as its successors but nonetheless showed that the band possessed potential. Familiar would be the nice way to put it. However, there were those who called the band’s music both generic and repetitive.
4. Dark Before Dawn
As mentioned earlier, Breaking Benjamin had a falling out in the early 2010s. Burnley was too ill to perform, so he put the band on indefinite hiatus. After which, a couple of the other band members were said to have granted unilateral permission for a greatest hits album plus a remix of a song featuring a different artist, which so infuriated Burnley that he fired them before suing them. This led to a legal battle, with the result that he was the one who walked away with the right to continue performing under the name Breaking Benjamin. Something that was then followed by the departure of the drummer because of creative differences. As such, 2015’s Dark Before Dawn was the product of a new band formed by Burnley, who penned most of its material. There are those who would have flubbed this comeback. However, Burnley wasn’t one of them because Dark Before Dawn proved to be the band’s greatest commercial success so far. If there is an issue, it is that he secured this result by playing things very safe, so much so that there are those who outright called the album both derivative and formulaic.
3. We Are Not Alone
Saturate did well enough. However, its reception made it clear that it still had issues. As such, Breaking Benjamin worked on those issues, thus resulting in a follow-up that was more emotional as well as more capable of standing out on its own. Their effort paid off because We Are Not Alone went platinum. Something that made it very clear that the band was a true up-and-comer.
2. Dear Agony
It is amusing to note that Dear Agony was released in 2009, which was a time when the Zune was still a thing. This can be seen in how it had a special edition for the Zune to go along with the other special editions that were released. Regardless, Dear Agony was the last album released before the break-up and the subsequent reformation, meaning that it benefited from the experience that the band members had managed to build up over the better part of a decade. No one would call it the most creative album to ever come out. However, an album doesn’t necessarily have to be creative to be worth listening to, particularly when it is executed as smoothly as this particular case.
Phobia would be Breaking Benjamin’s third album. By this point, chances are good that interested individuals can guess the general assessment of the album. In short, it didn’t show a great deal of innovation from its predecessors, meaning that it didn’t manage to win over anyone who was less than impressed by the band’s earlier work. However, Phobia was definitely one of those works that knew its audience and knew its audience well, thus enabling it to amaze Breaking Benjamin’s already sizable fanbase at that point in time. It isn’t quite accurate to say that Phobia is the clear choice for the best studio album put out by the band so far, but it is definitely fair to say that it is a strong contender for said position.