Breaking Benjamin

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Who Sounds like Breaking Benjamin?

Bursting through the alternative rock scene with a sound described as rock tinged with metal, Breaking Benjamin soon became synonymous with mainstream rock in the early 2000s. Singles such as “Breath” in 2007 led the band to worldwide success and contributed to similar artists hitting the airwaves.

Utilizing strong guitars, bass, and drums coupled with strong, meaningful lyrics to elicit emotion from crowds, Breaking Benjamin quickly gained a popular following and has the platinum-selling albums to back it up.

If You Like Breaking Benjamin You May Likeā€¦
With various stated influences such as Pearl Jam, Nirvana, Bush, and Stone Temple Pilots, Breaking Benjamin is typically associated with other alt-rock and alt-metal artists. Heavier than most other post-grunge acts on the rock scene, the band also anchors metal-edged guitar with strong rhythms from drums and bass.

Bands that sound like Breaking Benjamin tend to hit on melodic choruses backed by strong guitar riffs, as well. Sometimes described as a mix between passionate and moody, bands similar to Breaking Benjamin include:

  • Seether
  • Three Days Grace
  • Trapt
  • Staind
  • Skillet

Bands like Breaking Benjamin regularly adapt similar styles. Fans may also enjoy the music of Chevelle, Red, Disturbed, Evans Blue, Thirty Seconds to Mars, and Finger Eleven.

Biography

Formed in 1999 in Wilkes-Barre, PA, the eponymously named rock band Breaking Benjamin is fronted by lead singer Ben Burnley. With drummer Jeremy Hummel, the duo soon became a quartet in late 2000, adding Lifer guitarist Aaron Fink and bassist Mark Klepaski.

Breaking Benjamin maintained a successful run with four studio albums before parting ways with Fink and Klepaski and then taking a break. After a five-year hiatus and a complete lineup change, though with Burnley still in the lead, the band continues to put out new music, including their newest release in 2015, Dark Before Dawn, which became the band’s first chart-topping album.

History

Fronted by lead vocalist Benjamin Burnley, Breaking Benjamin found a loyal following and local radio play throughout Pennsylvania in late 1999 and early 2000. The quartet produced a self-made EP in 2001, which led to the band signing with Hollywood Records that same year.

By the following August, their first major-label debut album, Saturate, was released to limited success at the time, though the first single “Polyamorous” received its fair share of radio play. The album has since gone on to sell over 300,000 units.

The band broke out with its next studio album in 2004, We Are Not Alone. The record featured the hit single “So Cold,” which peaked at number two on the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart. The second single, “Sooner or Later,” reached number two on the charts, as well.

Collaborations with Billy Corgan of the Smashing Pumpkins soon followed, as did a promotional tour playing with Evanescence the same year. We Are Not Alone eventually went platinum, cementing Breaking Benjamin’s place as one of the more popular bands in the early 2000s.

Phobia, the band’s third studio album, was the first to feature new drummer Chad Szeliga and was released in 2006 to wide acclaim. Featuring the singles “The Diary of Jane” and “Breath,” Phobia has also been certified platinum. “Breath” spent seven weeks at number one on the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart and the album itself peaked at number one on the US Rock Album Chart.

2009 marked the release of their fourth studio album, Dear Agony, which would also be the last album recorded before the band went on hiatus and ended its current lineup due to legal issues, inner squabbling, and Burnley’s personal issues.

After the band parted ways with Fink and Klepaski in 2011, and with Szeliga in 2013, fans feared that Breaking Benjamin was no more. However, in 2014, Burnley confirmed that he was working on new material and that the band would continue as a quintet.

New members included guitarist Jasen Rauch, previously of Red, Adelita’s Way guitarist Keith Wallen, bassist Aaron Bruch, and drummer Shaun Foist, who previously played with Picture Me Broken. The band released their first album in nearly six years, Dark Before Dawn, which debuted at number one and featured the chart-topping single “Failure.”

Music

Burnley has dealt with a variety of personal demons, including alcoholism, throughout the duration of Breaking Benjamin’s existence. The resulting physical pain has frequently been adapted into the band’s songs.

Combining alt-rock and alt-metal sounds, as well as experimenting with various styles that cross into both genres at times, Breaking Benjamin has grown and matured their ever-evolving musical style, which is embraced by fans new and old. The band now counts two former lead singers of other bands in their current lineup, allowing for more versatility in backing vocals and musical iterations never used before.

Discography

  • Saturate (2002) – Their debut album with Hollywood Records. Has since sold nearly 300,000 copies.
  • We Are Not Alone (2004) – The band’s first platinum album, earning the group mainstream recognition. Features popular singles “Sooner or Later” and “So Cold.”
  • Phobia (2006) – Reached platinum status. Peaked at number one on U.S. Rock charts and number two overall on the Billboard 200.
  • Dear Agony (2009) – Certified gold, though not as successful as the previous two albums. The last album to feature Fink, Klepaski, and Szeliga as band members.
  • Dark Before Dawn (2015) – Debuted at number one, selling over 140,000 equivalent album units in its first week of release. Marked the first chart-topping release ever for Breaking Benjamin.

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