Fivespeed surprising, strong

Going by first impressions, Fivespeed looked like just any other band with its almost boring debut album cover for their release “Morning Over Midnight.” The group, composed of Jared Woosley on vocals, Jesse Lacross and Brad Cole on guitar, Shane Addington on drums and Matt Turner on bass admittedly looked like nothing special.

Then when the music started playing, all of my expectations were blown away. The first track on the CD, a power song entitled “Fair Trade,” was supported by strong guitar rhythms, beautiful lyrics and a mood behind the song that almost felt religious.

As the album progresses, the members experiment with several different styles of music that remind me of Breaking Benjamin, whom the band has actually toured with an older Oleander. Surprisingly, every direction the group tries out works well for them, proving that their style is truly fluid. This could have something to do with the fact that every member of the band contributes in some way to the overall sound.

“Everyone in this band is involved in the writing,” Woosley said. “And we each come at our songs from very different places. When it all comes together, it’s very distinct. Diversity is one of the keys to what we do. No two songs sound the same.”

The title track for the album, “Morning Over Midnight,” builds itself up like an Incubus song, but the vocals do not really fit with the kind of song it feels like they were going for until the chorus. Then you understand why the band chose this song to draw attention to. The vocalists come together with the instrumentals in the song perfectly with an effect that leaves you holding your breath waiting for the next run through.

One of the songs on the CD that I was really surprised with was track six, “Lights.” It starts out like a techno song, but then the lines of guitar and, more importantly, percussion, break through the background for yet another powerful ballad.

My favorite song on the album is “Wait Forever,” which in sound, lyrics and overall mood is just a little too much like Hoobastank’s “Crawling in the Dark,” but it accomplishes what that song did not by focusing on the elements of a personal relationship affecting a whole life.

All in all, the album is worth buying, and that is coming from someone who never spends money on anything. The group has real soul, and for an alternative rock band, that means a lot.

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