The Fray

The Fray are a hard band to peg. On one hand, their songs feature strong piano-work and competent vocals. On the other hand, nobody has an impression of them outside of, “Hey, how about that song that plays during Gray’s Anatomy?”

The odd thing about the Fray is, that despite being around for the better part of the decade and now being snugly nestled in the Sony/Disney corporate synergy machine, they’ve only released two albums. Their album, the self-titled The Fray, is more or less the same as its predecessor, How to Save a Life. It features a wide array of piano-heavy ballads and the occasional song with slightly less piano. Also, just as How to Save a Life’s main single was used to promote ABC’s Gray’s Anatomy, The Fray’s key single, “You Found Me,” was used to promote ABC’s Lost…during Gray’s Anatomy. Funny how that works.

The Fray itself is largely inoffensive alt-rock, seemingly designed to appeal to the same demographic as the first album. The problem with the CD is that the band makes a series of safe choices and never seem willing to stray. Many other bands have that same problem, but a good deal of them have back catalogues full of daring, sometimes embarrassing, musical experiments. The Fray seem to lack the courage to be anything but bland.

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