Cutting the cord but still vibrating

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Collective Soul’s members, from left to right, Jesse Triplett , Will Turpin, Ed Roland, Dean Roland and Johnny Rabb (Photo by David Abbott)

”Vibrating,” the newest album from rock band Collective Soul, is intended to be like the band’s live shows—crackling with energy.

“You got to go to that point where you say, ‘We’re not clicking on all cylinders, but we’ll get there’; you know it’s there because you had it before,” says Ed Roland about the mentality for the band’s 11th album.

Collective Soul’s latest tour, which started in January and has a spot in on June 1 at the Perinton Center Park Amphitheater, is an extension of that energy from “Vibrating.” For example, the single “Cut the Cord” highlights the album’s driving vocals, pulsing drums and crunchy guitars that make it a “propulsively gnarly kiss-off.” Even different sounds like a soaring string section in “Rule No. 1” and the choir-backed vocals of “Where Do I Go” maintain a certain electricity throughout the songs.

Roland provides vocals and also plays keyboard and guitar. His brother, Dean Roland, is rhythm guitarist. Bassist Will Turpin, lead guitarist Jesse Triplett and drummer Johnny Rabb round out the group.

Collective Soul, which emerged from a small town in Georgia, is best known for 1990s mainstays such as “Shine” and “December.” The band has often been grouped with the grunge movement of the same era, The members believe, because there was a shift to popular music dealing with more serious topics, their sound was lumped into that genre.

Instead, Collective Soul is self-defined as a bit “all over the map” sonically. While “Vibrating” was released last summer, the band already has its follow-up record planned and set to drop alongside a documentary next year. The album is filled with all kinds of styles, including some musicality inspired by jazz, members say.

“I think we’re on a roll,” observes Roland, who is also the band’s chief songwriter. “We’re not afraid to stretch the boundaries, but we do know how to stay in our lane when we need to. Sometimes, though, we just have to go faster.

“Both (previous albums) ‘See What You Started’ and ‘Blood’ set such a high standard for where we’re going as a band,” he continues. “And it’s only going to continue getting better.”

Jacob Schermerhorn is a Rochester Beacon contributing writer. The Beacon welcomes comments and letters from readers who adhere to our comment policy including use of their full, real name. Submissions to the Letters page should be sent to [email protected]

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