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Collective Soul (Bonus Track Version)

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Album Review

Fourteen years after their first self-titled album, Collective Soul deliver another in 2009 and it's fair to say that the album is a bit of a reintroduction, not a reinvention. It's also fair to ask who Collective Soul is reintroducing themselves to, and the answer is pretty simple: after spending the better part of the decade in the indie leagues, the band is returning to the majors with 2009's Collective Soul, making a pitch at reconnecting with the wide mainstream audience they had a decade ago. The group doesn't ignore what it's done over the last ten years — there's a pronounced Bowie influence that still lingers — first aired on the glam-tastic Youth — especially on "Fuzzy," but this is high-gloss, high-octane arena rock, filled with big riffs and hooks on both the rockers and power ballads. Collective Soul doesn't make an attempt to modernize their sound (although the verse of "Understanding" has an unmistakable phrase borrowed from Jack White) choosing instead to refine their best techniques, so this winds up being a very big, very hooky modern rock record that might not find the audience it once did but only because of the shifting landscape of modern rock. As a record, this is as strong as anything Collective Soul have ever done.

Customer Reviews

not the usual CS

If you are expecting the solo vocals, piano and symphony and even introspective CS, you may have come to know from so many years, it’s not on this album. I suppose it’s great to know that after so many years the guys can rock, but the combo of guitar and classic music, pressed with heartfelt lyrics are not here. Worth your ten bucks or so if you are a dedicated fan, but if Home or Youth and similar albums are what makes you cling to CS, collect your $200 and pass Go. If you pay for the iTunes bonus track version you’ll get some of the older style stuff, but there is still no orchestral anything here. There’s even a real hard cave-in towards getting themselves back on the radio in Fuzzy. The whistling makes me thing of a Weezer song. A great try and a very good song. Others go in the same vein. Where the River Flows reminds me of where this entire album is trying to go. Enjoy, but expect something different.

New Album

Ed Roland is one of the best song writers of our time. It shows in the sustainability of his music. He writes what I call timeless music. Music that will be heard for the rest of time and still be enjoyed decades from now. I have just recently purchased the album. It's like every other CS album, absolutely fantastic. Ed is paticularly pleasant to listen to in his acoustic versions.

Collective Soul (Rabbit)

I gave this album 4 stars because I wanted to give Collective Soul the benefit of the doubt. I honestly feel like it deserves 3.5 stars. I had looked forward to the release of Rabbit for several months, and was honestly a little disappointed when it came out. It is definitely worth owning, and is by no means a bad record, but there are a couple of weak points, namely Understanding and Lighten Up. Also, I do not like You very much; it just feels like the band was trying too hard to write a hit ballad. The highlights for me are the first three tracks, which are all solid rock songs, and She Does (I especially like the bonus piano version). Staring Down, the first single, is a good effort, but feels too adult contemporary for me. I love Collective Soul because they are a great hard rock band. Hard rock is what I would like them to stick with.


Formed: 1992 in Stockbridge, GA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

When Seattle grunge went mainstream, it was only a matter of time before the ripple effect was felt in regions other than the Pacific Northwest. The Georgia-based quintet Collective Soul -- along with fellow inheritors of the then commercially lucrative post-grunge landscape like Live, Bush, and Candlebox -- developed the genre into a more succinct brand of angst, turning the sonic cacophony of bands like Mudhoney and the Melvins into radio-friendly hard rock. Collective Soul (whose name borrowed...
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