NEEDTOBREATHE, rock-up Country and stir-up Americana on their Seventh full-length Album, Out of Body. The ascendancy of the band is once again confirmed. This Southern Rock infused album will win praise from fans and gain new loyal followers, wondering how they missed them.
While you read this review check out the video for Mercy Shore which opens the album with style. This video is part of a five-part series of visuals for the album. This gives a feeling of live moments in a time when live music vibe and energy is shut down ad denied for the best of reasons.
Mercy Shore’s should be heard in a large venue, band and audience in harmony and hot and sweaty. The best to offer and it is a mighty best is to stand up, beer and hand, move with the beat hear the words and dance, make your own energy your personal bubble full of that feeling music gives you. You will join them with white knuckles and wild horses as the lights strobe and the beat re-energises you with hope on Mercy’s Shore.
Next up is a huge anthem driven, rocking number. The tempo rises the urgency is immense as the backing vocal intone Breathe of Alive. Yes, this is a celebration of being alive, running free, upbeat, positive breathe of fresh air through your speakers.
Three tracks in and your feet will be tapping, and Hang On another video, a visually impactful delight, is available to watch as you listen as Bear Rinehart sings deep into the microphone before picking up the guitar. A reflective number that keeps the pace moving, not maudlin but a call to keep going holding in to what you cherish.
The instrumentation drives the melody with the beat grinding out and an urgency demanding that we listen. Survival featuring Drew & Ellie Holcomb add extra tonal layers deepening the country vibe. This is a stunning number from beginning to end the music at the ends leads you wanting more. Then we are treated to Child Again, a ballad that flows with melodic elegance. Full of yearning and the need for reassurance that it is safe to be a child again, this is the albums redemption song.
The album has a flow never straying far from Southern Rock vibe, yet every track has its own distinctive shape held together by strong lyrics delivered with passion as we now hear the title track Out of Body nested half way through the album. This can be the point where albums can falter they have used the energy in the opening tracks. Not so on Out of Body, the tempo is gentler on Who Am I but the intensity is maintained in the words and strong rhythms a love song with roses, trust and passion. The chorus refrain of Who Am I, reflects the question many of have asked as old certainties and routines have unravelled out of control before our eyes. The middle trio of numbers closes out with Banks. Another up-tempo lyric driven ballad. The backing vocals falls across the guitar chords like a waterfall of sound that holds the narrative together as ‘I will be the banks for you river’, chorus line is sung. A number full of positivity and compassion, love ballad full of co-operation a dinner strength and support. A song for our times.
The tempo picks up again as we are Riding High with the band. This music that thrills, entertains and uplifts. It is fun journeying through the songs. A twist in the tail with the slower number Bottom of a Heartbreak. Moody, wistful and meditative as the way forward is searched for amongst the pain. Strong melodies that ebb and flow as despair rises and hope is glimpse as the drums bring depth and colour as a backdrop to the sorrowful lyrics.
Closing out the album with Seasons, country rock and a gentle caress of vocals and keys. Once again the words and strong chorus we explore the changes in our lives the seasons that change. Whatever happens there will be change just as the season’s moves on through the patterns of time. Nothing is static we will move on.
The album, Out Of Body is the best that Southern Rock has to offer. Blended tones, deep bass lines, strong vocal tales combine with a raw energy that has been tamed and shaped into a music narrative that leaves you uplifted by the music OUT OFBREATHE deliver on every track. An album for the times we are all travelling through and doing our best not to be overwhelmed. .
NEEDTOBREATHE welcomed the album with Celebrating Out of Body, a fully immersive release-day concert experience directed by acclaimed filmmaker Elizabeth Olmstead (Brandi Carlile, The Highwomen). The group performed the album top-to-bottom, live for the very first time, as well as select fan-favourite tracks. Celebrating Out of Body is available on-demand until September 11 HERE.
Bluesdoodles rating: A Stupendous listen, uplifting, strong lyrics, upbeat and thoughtful. Southern Rock reflecting 2020. A definite for your collection!
1. Mercy’s Shore
3. Hang On
4. Survival (feat. Drew & Ellie Holcombe)
5. Child Again
6. Out Of Body
7. Who Am I
9. Riding High
10. Bottom of a Heartbreak
Bear Rinehart: vocals, guitar
Seth Bolt: bass, vocals
Josh Lovelace: keys, vocals
Drew & Ellie Holcombe