My Sunday Song – “10 Years Later” by Collective Soul

For My Sunday Song #179, we are coving “10 Years Later” by Collective Soul.  The song is off their 2000 album ‘Blender’ and although not a single, it is still my favorite song on the album and one of my favorites by the band ever.  And that is saying a lot.

The song has so few lyrics, but to me is saying so much.  It seems very retrospective about a lost love that seemed to have no closure.  It has been 10 years and he still has no idea if she thinks about him or if he meant anything to her at all and it seems to be bothering him.  It is a very sad, yet touching song.

Musically, the song is slowed down and sounds like a very heartfelt ballad.  With acoustic guitars and some electronic keyboard sounds.  There is almost a Beatles vibe to the sound and the writing.  They throw in a nice little Ross Childress guitar solo in to it that even adds to the mystery of the song.  Ed Roland sings in an almost whispery voice with such a soft delivery that makes the lyrics that much more impactful.  There is a really cool vibe throughout the song and has always stood out as one of my favorites.

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My Sunday Song – “You Speak My Language” by Collective Soul

For My Sunday Song #178, We are tackling the song “You Speak My Language” by Collective Soul off the 2000 album ‘Blender’.  The song was never a single, but one that stood out for as there was something special about it.  It was very different.

Why is it different you ask? This song is very different for Collective Soul for two reason…one, it is not written by Ed Roland and two, it is a cover song!  Two very rare events for Collective Soul.  The song was written by Mark Sandman of the band Morphine and Mark had died a year earlier.  I believe it was done as a tribute to Mark and what a fine tribute it was.  For me, the song is about walking around this world and not finding anyone that understands you for YOU!.  That is until you find the one.  The one that speaks the same language as you.  That gets you, that knows you better than anyone.  When you find that, grab hold.

Musically, Collective Soul attack this song with so much energy and ferociousness that you are taken back by how heavy and wild the song is.  Ross Childress’ guitar playing is brutal with a killer riff and beast of a solo.  This might be the heaviest the band ever got.  Ed Roland sounds great and his lyric delivery is both deliberate and effective and with a little special vocal effect on the mic for added impact.  The song is also mixed throughout with sound effects normally not found in their songs which adds to it as well.  But no matter what the song is, you still hear Collective Soul and they turned a cover song into their own song.  Brilliant!

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My Sunday Song – “Gel” by Collective Soul

For My Sunday Song #173, we are going to discuss the song “Gel” off the bands 1994 self titled album by Collective Soul. It was the first single off the band’s second album and after Shine, I was now hooked on the band and haven’t looked back since.  The song didn’t make the Top 40, but it did make it to #2 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart and back in the 90’s, I didn’t care about Top 40 anyway.

The song is a quirky, rock track that can have many meanings, it is all left up to your interpretation of the lyrics.  It could be about a man and woman who have a lot of differences and it doesn’t matter, he wants to “Gel” per se.  Me, I like to view it as that people from different backgrounds, different cultures, different beliefs can still come together and meet and have open discussions and just gel.  In a world that is so separated and polarizing today, this song is almost a dream of some sort of utopia as I don’t think people have the capacity to gel nowadays.  That is why I think this song is needed.

Now, there is another theory I have read that it is about the band’s search for a record label as after their debut, record companies were clamoring to grab them up and they all wanted to make changes to the band.  However, the band wanted to do their own thing so could the label and the band come together and gel.  It turns out the label left them alone pretty much and let them do their thing as they were doing it so well on their own.  Like I said, you listen to the song and you interpret it however you would like.

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My Sunday Song – “Heavy” by Collective Soul

For My Sunday Song #171, we are going to discuss the song “Heavy” off the band’s 1999 album ‘Dosage’. The song was the second single and the band’s last #1 song on the Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks as well as the last to make the Billboard Hot 100 where it only reached #73.

The song was the last song written for the record and actually was written after the record was complete.  The band liked it so much they made sure to get it on the album before it went out to production.  Ed Roland wrote the song and was inspired by all the crap that went on with their former manager.  The weight of everything was riding heavy on Ed’s shoulders and as a result we got this great song.  An interesting to note, the song title of “Heavy” it is no where in the song.  The weight of the lyrics and the heavy guitar sound are where the title comes from as the word summed up the vibe.

The song opens with a heavy guitar riff and is at such a break neck speed it is over before you know it at under 3 minutes in length.  The guitar solo by Ross Childress actually includes six types of wah effects according to songfacts.com.  It includes two standard pedals, three Auto Wah pedals, and a digital Wah via Pro Tools.  It brings a really cool sound to the solo like none they had ever done before.  The whole album saw the band exploring different sounds and this was one of their most creative for me.

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Collective Soul – The Albums Ranked from Worst to First

For me, this was a local band making it big.  Collective Soul was from Stockbridge, GA which was just outside of Atlanta so for they were a local band since I lived just outside of Atlanta as well…only in a slightly different area.  The band was Ed Roland, brother Dean Roland, Will Turpin, Ross Childress and Shane Evans.  Ed Roland was the driving, creative force behind the band and still is today.

The band started selling numerous copies of their debut album ‘Hints Allegations and Things Left Unsaid’ without a record label’s help.  I think they sold over 10,000 copies.  The record companies took notice and they were snatched up pretty quickly. In 1994, Atlantic Records signed them and basically slapped their label name on the disc and put it out since the album was already made.  Not a bad investment.  The rest is history.

Now we are over 25 years later and the band is getting ready to release their 10th studio album and to celebrate, I thought I would rank all their albums from worst to first.  And let me tell you this was really hard for me.  Collective Soul is a very consistent band.  They have a sound that is consistent throughout all albums.  They don’t venture far from their formula and why should they.  This is amazing considering they have been through 3 lead guitarists over the years, but have kept that same guitar sound.

The hard thing for me is what order as on any given day I can like one album more than the other and then back to liking another one.  There isn’t a bad album in the bunch only some I like more than others.  I stuck with only the Studio albums, no collections, no E.Ps and no live albums so not everything is here on this list.  I hope you enjoy it and maybe discover a band you weren’t all too familiar with.

WORST – AFTERWORDS (2007)

 

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