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Breaking Benjamin: No longer broken

Next month the band Breaking Benjamin will release "Dark Before Dawn," it's first album in six years. Friday the band performs at Seven Flags in Clive.

There are reasons for the delays. Frontman Benjamin Burnley has had chronic health issues, and the band went on a long hiatus while members of the band went through legal battles. Burnley retained the rights to the name and has reformed the band with new members.

"For me, it was already my own thing they were trying to take away from me," Burnley said during a phone interview. "It would be different if we started together and had come up with the name together, but I had it before anyone else joined. Obviously, it has my name in it. If it didn't belong to me, I wouldn't have fought for it."

The new Breaking Benjamin has a lot of vocal power. Guitarist Keith Wallen and bassist Aaron Bruch both have past singing experience, allowing for harmonies on the new songs and adding guitarist Jasen Rauch of Red has fleshed out the band's sound. Burnley said Breaking Benjamin songs are now being performed live the way he always wanted them too.

It's still about a month until "Dark Before Dawn" comes out, though fans will be able to hear the new songs "Failure" and "Angels Fall" at Friday's show. Burnley doesn't want to drop too much new material into the show until fans are familiar with it.

"I like fans to be able to get a little more connected with the songs before we play it live," Burnley said. "Once the album is out we'll probably make the set even amounts of every album."

Burtnley never stopped writing during the Breaking Benjamin hiatus. He has a chronic illness, Wernicke-Karasakoff syndrome, caused by his past drinking, that he's been unable to get answers on. His music has been the thing that kept him moving forward.

"Rather than give up and wither away, I decided to push through and get on me feet," Burnley said. "No matter how sick I may be, I'd rather go out on my feet doing what I love than just laying around. Life is for living and making music and making people happy make me feel that a life of suffering is worth suffering through."

Breaking Benjamin

When: 7 p.m. Friday

Where: Seven Flags, 2100 N.W. 100th St., Clive

Cost: $35