No, I Cannot Take You Higher. I Refuse To Because You Are Terrible.

There’s an article in Slate today encouraging everyone to give Creed a second chance. Erroneously titled “Creed Is Good,” the article recounts the band’s early triumphs and disastrous breakdown in preparation for Creed’s comeback album due out at the end of this month. 

In 1997, an unknown Florida hard-rock group called Creed spent $6,000 to make its debut album, My Own Prison. Talk about a good investment: An independent label, Wind-Up, signed the group, got Sony to provide distribution, and Creed became, for four years or so, one of America’s hugest bands. Its 1999 single, “Higher,” topped the modern-rock chart for 17 straight weeks. “With Arms Wide Open,” released the following year, reached the top of the pop charts, and won the Grammy for best rock song. Between 1997 and 2002, the band grossed more than $70 million touring. To date, it has sold 26 million records in the United States.

Apparently, by the end of 2002 the band began collapsing beneath the weight of lead singer Scott Stapp’s drug and alcohol addiction. Stapp nearly committed suicide and the band finally broke up in 2004. I had no knowledge of Stapp’s sordid, drug addled past. I always assumed the band broke up because, well, they sucked and eventually things that suck that bad must come to an end so that balance can be restored to our world. 

But anyway, Creed’s back and Slate thinks this is a good thing, even if it doesn’t pan out for the once inexplicably famous band. 

There’s no telling whether Creed will make good on its second chance, but the band deserves a second listen. If your impulse on hearing that it has reunited is to groan, stifle it long enough to locate a copy of Creed’s 2004 Greatest Hits collection. It’s a fantastic baker’s dozen of first-rate schlock-rock, courtesy of one of the most underrated and unfairly maligned groups in pop history.

Creed’s Greatest Hits collection has 13 songs?! That album should be two songs long: “Higher” and “With Arms Wide Open.” No, scratch that. That album shouldn’t even exist. Creed is terrible. 

I’m offended by Slate‘s assertion that 14 year old me was somehow not smart enough to realize that a band I thought was awful was actually really good and that if I could just drop my ego for a minute and give the God-loving suck-fest that was their break out album, Human Clay, another chance, I’d realize the error of my younger self’s ways. False, Slate! Granted, my ability to discern good music during the earlier years of my life was not foolproof (repeated listening to OMC’s “How Bizarre” more than proves that), but I was definitely smart enough to correctly determine that Creed was the suckiest bunch of sucks that ever sucked. And I’m definitely smart enough now to know better than to waste my time by giving them a second listen. 

God that band was and still is, just awful.

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