Music / The Fray

The Fray is a Denver-based rock group best known for their singles "Over My Head (Cable Car)", "How To Save A Life", and their piano-rock style of music.

The current members are:
  • Isaac Slade: lead vocals, piano/keyboard
  • David "Dave" Welsh: lead guitar
  • Joe King: guitar, backing vocals
  • Ben Wysocki: drums, percussion

Not to be confused with the comic book Fray.

The band's songs contain examples of:

  • Angsty Surviving Twin: The main character of "Run For Your Life" is one.
  • Berlin Wall:
    • Referenced in "Hundred"
    • More obvious in "1961", where it's used as a metaphor for walls we build up to not let people in.
  • As the Good Book Says: Minor example in "Absolute":
    Yet man was born to trouble, like sparks fly upward... note 
  • Blithe Spirit: Of the girl in "Turn Me On", Slade said, "She's like a belly dancer almost in a very rigid, stiff, kind of regimented, legalistic world. She comes in and kind of upsets the food cart."
  • Crowd Song: "All At Once" references a crowd bursting into song.
  • Despair Event Horizon:
    • A number of songs seem to be written from the wrong side. Examples include "Trust Me," "Over My Head (Cable Car)" and "You Found Me."
    • "How To Save A Life" has someone else going over this.
    • "Run For Your Life" is about a girl with a dead twin sister and trying to keep her from crossing it.
  • Disappeared Dad: The father in "Enough for now", who "left my mother's mother without so much as a kiss", and while it's unclear exactly what happened the first verse says he's "no longer with us" and later lyrics suggest he's dead.
  • Downer Ending: "Happiness" (see below.)
  • Driven to Suicide: It appears that "How To Save a Life" is a song about someone who was driven to killing themselves.
  • Grief Song: "How To Save A Life" is about being unable to save someone from themselves, though it's officially open to interpretation.
  • Hikikomori: "Little House" seems to be about one.
  • In the Blood: "Turn Me On".
  • "I Want" Song: "She Is"
    She is everything I need that I never knew I wanted, she is everything I want that I never knew I needed
    • "Without Reason" from the Reason EP is another.
  • Never Trust a Title: "Happiness" is nothing like it sounds. It's an extremely sad song that puts some of U2's album closers to shame.
  • Not Christian Rock: A special example since all the members are Christians and their songs tend to feature some very spiritual imagery. Although they've decided to brand themselves as a secular band in an attempt to reach out to a wider audience, some of their songs are still played on Christian radio.
  • Rage Against the Heavens: "You Found Me" is addressed to God with the question "Where were you?" Also a bit of Smite Me, O Mighty Smiter! involved. Fairly mild, though, given that Isaac Slade is a Christian. Note that, even if He was "just a little late," God showed up anyway, and although the song is very emotional, it does have a slight air of gratefulness.
  • Rags to Royalty: In 2006 Isaac Slade was named heir to the estate of Sir Baron Benjamin Slade, a distant cousin of his.
  • Self-Titled Album: Oddly enough, their second album was this.
  • Silly Rabbit, Idealism Is for Kids!: "Trust Me" plays around with this; the speaker seems sad that the addressee will understand "when you're older," but equally despairing at the idea that they never might.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: According to Slade, "Turn Me On" is about a Romeo and Juliet style love affair.
  • Talking Down the Suicidal: "How to Save a Life" is about attempting and failing to do this.
  • Train-Station Goodbye: "Vienna"
  • What the Hell Is That Accent?: Isaac. Naturally leading to the occasional Mondegreen.
  • Why Couldn't You Be Different?: "Enough For Now" is about a man who wanted a son to inherit his name, but had a daughter instead. The lyrics suggest that it's about the grandfather of a band member.