Shinedown, "If You Only Knew"

Track Review

Shinedown follows up its biggest hit to date ("Second Chance") with another modern rock gem. "If You Only Knew" is the first love ballad that singer Brent Smith wrote for the band-the song was inspired by the day Smith found out he was going to be a father, and his powerful vocal exudes a sense of pure joy. He and songwriter Dave Bassett have crafted relatable, yet open-ended lyrics that are colored with affecting guitars and a stadium-ready sound, bringing to mind some memorable rock ballads by Bon Jovi, Aerosmith and Goo Goo Dolls. Centering on Smith's vocal, Grammy Award-winning producer Rob Cavallo (Green Day, Paramore) blends a lively drum kick with equally spirited guitars and emotional string instrumentation, making "If You Only Knew" a sure bet for success. --Michael Menachem