A couple months back, Needtobreathe sent out emails to their fans and told us some news about a new album, ‘Out of Body’. However, at the same time they discussed the heartbreaking news that Bo Rinehart, lead guitar and founding member, was leaving the band. This caused great pause to me as Bo is the creative mind behind the band. He did a lot of the art, the video concepts, he was a songwriter as well and a hell of a musician. He was one of the many reasons, I love this band. I now had worries about the new album and how the band was going to sound.
This only left 3 members of the band…
Bear Rinehart, lead singer, guitar
Josh Lovelace – hammond organ and piano
Seth Bolt – bass and drums (not at the same time)
I still ordered the album the day it went available for pre-order and I even ordered the Vinyl and CD bundle because why not. Artistically, the cover of the album was amazing, the color of the vinyl was stunning and everything about the concept was beautiful and some of the best the band has done. And you can see below, everything looks great…
As you know if you visit my site, one of my favorite bands is Needtobreathe. I have everything they have put out on vinyl and now I am going after everything they have released on CD (that they don’t have on vinyl). And the CDs I want the most are the exclusive fan club CDs they release each year.
If you join the Needtobreathe Insiders fan club (for $60 a year), you get a Live CD of tracks collected from the band’s live performances. (among other things such as a T-shirt and a free live track download ever month – that is 12 more songs). Needtobreathe actually records every show they put on so they have a ton of tunes to choose from. They have released 5 volumes and number 6 will be coming in December. I have never joined so getting my hands on these has not been easy as it is not cheap. I am looking for the right price and most of the time it is too high. I finally grabbed my first one at a price less than the membership fee.
Who is the band and the musicians on this album? Easy enough, they tell you that…
The first one I got a hold of is ‘Insiders LP, Vol 2’. It is a collection of 14 live tracks from around world and let me tell you it is fantastic. The band has spent some time with these and the production quality is amazing. They put as much time in to them as they would a normal studio album or live album release to the general public. The mix is done so the songs blend in with each other perfectly and it feels like a complete show.
Back in 2006, my brother told me I had to listen to this album called ‘Daylights’ by the band Needtobreathe. I had never heard of them and I trust my brothers opinion since he did bring me in to the Kiss world when I was like 6. He said they were a Christian Rock band and they were amazing. Well, he was sort of right. They were awesome, but they aren’t just a Christian rock band. They are a rock band who happens to be Christian and a lot of their views are in their music, but they aren’t bible thumping. They are telling honest stories that will hopefully impact you in some way.
And impact me they have. Their music is what I go to when I need inspiration, I need to feel better or I just need some good roots rock music sometimes with a Southern Rock flair. For me, it is all good and there is no “Worst Album”. After 6 studio albums, 2 live albums and numerous E.P.’s, they are still one of my all-time favorite bands out there and I hope they continue for years to come. The band is as follows:
I am keeping this list to just the 6 studio albums and let this be your gateway in to the band. Remember, these are in order of my least favorite to my very favorite and that might not be your order, but that is fine. It is only my opinion. So be kind. And here we go…Needtobreathe!!
For My Sunday Song #161, we are now taking over with the next 10 songs coming from one of my favorite bands Needtobreathe. A rock band with a Southern Rock sound, folk, Americana, gospel all with a Christian background and some of the best songs I have ever heard. I usually try to stick with the non-singles, but as I want more people to know this band, I won’t always stick with that philosophy…although this song is just that. The song this week is called “Cops” and it is a B-Side for the song “Keep Your Eyes Open”. The song is also a bonus track on the LP version of the album ‘The Reckoning’ from 2011. Yes, the LP has the bonus tracks!!
The song is one of the bands heaviest songs and completely rocks out. The reason for that is the subject matter of the song. Needtobreathe has always been labeled a Christian band, but they are not. They are a rock band that has a Christian upbringing and that subject matter bleeds in to the music from time to time. But that is not their focus. They don’t deny they are Christians, they just want to play music and have a good time…nothing wrong with that.
The song is about the Christian people that are trying to tie the band down as a Christian band. The constant opinions about how they are disappointing God when they don’t sing about him and they should be out there spreading the word. Sorry, they are a Rock band first and they are not apologizing for that. The band likens this pressure to being chased by “Cops”…so there you have it. I find it funny how Christians are supposed to be holier than thou, but yet they are the first to cast the stone and point the finger when they should be looking in to that mirror themselves. Another problem I have with religion although I am a Christian, their hypocrisy is sickening at times. Soapbox, getting down now.
There are only a few bands in your lifetime that come along and touch you in ways that nothing else can. I have been fortunate enough to have that happen on a few occasions. Needtobreathe is one of those bands for me. Their music speaks to me and makes me feel things that have made them a part of my life. I have only seen them live 3 times now and each time they get better. I have all their studio albums on vinyl and now their 2 live albums. The latest to the collection is the release ‘Acoustic Live, Vol. 1’. And that is what we are going to talk about here today.
Back in 2017, Needtobreathe went on their first ever acoustic tour. They played smaller venues and stripped it down bare to make the shows as intimate as they possibly could. Sadly, I had to miss the show due to my work schedule and let me tell you how much that sucked. I hate that work gets in the way of life.
Back to the album…the cover art was drawn by none other than Bo Rhinehart, lead guitarist. He is one talented MF. He also designed the videos shown during their most recent tour that my wife and I caught this past Summer (read about HERE). The rest of the artwork is really strong giving the album this vintage, retro look of say the early 1900’s. It is really cool.
Needtobreathe released their new E.P. titles ‘Forever On Your Side (Niles City Sound Sessions)’ which is a longer name than the album as the album is merely an E.P. featuring only 4 tracks. The Niles City Sound Sessions is actually a place in Fort Worth, Texas with a trio of producers that call themselves Niles City Sound. Needtobreathe sat with them for a time and these four songs came from that session.
I have ordered this on a beautiful 10″ Pink Vinyl, but it won’t actually come until September which is a long way from now. I will have been to the concert supporting this release before I actually have the physical product. The concert is August 21st out in the blistering heat at the Charlotte Metro Credit Union Amphitheatre. Nothing like a concert, outside in the middle of Summer!!!
The band consists of the following members…
Bear Rinehart – vocals
Bo Rinehart – guitar, banjo, mandolin
Seth Bolt – bass, percussion
Josh Lovelace – piano, organ
Since it is only 4 tracks, let us get right to it…
“Bridges Burn” was is the first track and it opened up with some weird “da-doo, da-doo, doo, doo, doo, doo nonsense (it isn’t that bad once you hear the rest of the song). I became skeptical real quick. Thankfully that was extremely short-lived. The song then turns into a classic Needtobreathe. The slow groove along with the piano accompaniment and Bear Rinehart’s vocals pouring out the emotion and allows you to feel everything he is releasing into the song. They are still incorporating some electronic elements, but not enough to distract.
Needtobreathe recently announced a new tour starting in August and a new project titled ‘Forever On Your Side (Niles City Sound Sessions)’. The first single from that project is titled “Bridges Burn”. Before I go into the song, let’s talk about the band.
Needtobreathe is one of my absolutely favorite bands and I am excited they are finally coming back to Charlotte as it has been awhile. I will do my best to make it to this show even if it will be OUTSIDE…IN AUGUST…IN THE SOUTH!! What were they thinking??? There is nothing like sitting outside in 100º weather.
Back to the music…here is what the band says about the new project…
“Forever On Your Side (Niles City Sound Sessions)” is a new collection of songs made over the course of a few weeks in Fort Worth, TX with the producer trio Niles City Sound. This music documents the season that we’re in as a band right now.