On My Playlist: Top 5 Fireflight songs


Fireflight is one of the most successful female-fronted rock bands in the Christian rock genre. Together with other bands like Skillet, Thousand Foot Krutch and Flyleaf, it has created a musical landscape that is both refreshing and viscerally emotive in the same breath. Dawn Michele has been the lead vocalist since the band’s inception in 1999 and her soothing, harmonious vocal tones are one of the reasons why this band holds a special place in my heart. Together with their edgy guitar tones and a mixture of fast-paced songs and slower ballads, they give their listeners something for each occasion.
The band currently consists of Dawn Michele – lead vocals, Wendy Drennen – bass guitar and backing vocals, and Glenn Drennen – guitar.
Honourable mentions: ’You Gave Me A Promise’, ‘The Hunger’, ‘Prove Me Wrong’, ‘Rise Above’, ‘Now’, ‘Stay Close’, ‘For Those Who Wait’ and ‘Fire In My Eyes’.
5. Keeping Me Alive
This is a terrific song to start the countdown. The drumbeat and lead guitar work in tandem to begin this track that focuses on taking heart in trying circumstances. The drumbeat even evokes the same pumping heartbeat rhythm to add to the theme. Michele’s vocals are top-notch, especially in the chorus where she sings: ‘I know I’ve done it to myself, I see that you’re the only one left who wants to stay by my side. Your love is keeping me alive.’ A superb, melodic lead riff from Drennen permeates the track and gives the chorus extra punch.

4. Stand Up
‘Stand Up’ is a song of defiance that aims to teach listeners to rise up from their struggles and continue fighting the good fight. The track begins with thunderous distorted guitars before a bass lick from Wendy Drennen. This adds some much-needed depth in the verse and some funky hi-hat playing.
The song has some great emotive verses that focus on facing your fears even though they seem bigger than you can handle: ‘Stand up if you need love, this is not judgment day, you don’t need to hide, you don’t have to run, everything will be okay.’
The most reassuring part of the lyrics is in the bridge where Michele sings ‘You say you love me, that’s all I’ll ever need. If you say I’m good enough, that’s good enough for me.’ One of the band’s most positive songs.

3. Ignite
This song is featured on the band’s 2012 album Now and is a killer track that focuses on starting a fire in your heart and letting your light shine. In other words, being the best version of yourself. ‘Lost in a world of dark delusion, I’m reaching for the light, we don’t need this complication,’ sings Michele in the frank verse before the chorus adds a positive spin on the circumstances.
‘Don’t hesitate, let it go, start a fire, embrace the light,’ sings Michele with some great backing vocals that add an extra dimension to the song.
This short, sharp track flows really well with numerous hard rock passages that give it extra punch. The guitars and overall musicality of ‘Ignite’ are some of the reasons it stands out in my opinion.

2. Desperate
‘Desperate’ is one of Fireflight’s earliest hits with its recognisable lead riff that starts the song off with a bang. Michele is at her best vocally and reaches some insane highs in the chorus: ‘Do you see me, do you hear me, will you help me? You’ve got me desperate.’
The first verse looks at the desperate situation with an honest perspective of how it feels when you are alone and need help. Sometimes, even positive words don’t do much: ‘I know there’s so much at stake but I don’t know if I can take one more pat on the back saying I’ll be okay.’ This is then juxtapositioned with a more positive realisation in the second verse. It reassures that there is, indeed, a helper from above to put her trust in: ‘You are the one I can trust, who hears when I call.’
Lyrically, this is one of the band’s best tracks and showcases every good thing that it is known for.

1. Unbreakable
The opening riff alone is worth listening to this song over and over again. A truly liberating track of how obstacles can be overcome and how we learn perseverance through the tough times.
‘Sometimes, it’s hard to just keep going but faith is moving without knowing. Can I trust what I can’t see to reach my destiny? I want to take control but I know better,’ sings Michele in the first verse before the mesmerising chorus, ‘Now, I am unbreakable, it’s unmistakable, no one can touch me, nothing can stop me!’ she sings in defiance and with surety in one of the most powerful moments in this song.
The outro is also one of the highlights of ‘Unbreakable’ with a fantastic repeating riff to end things hard and heavy.

Wouter Pienaar
Sport Journalist

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