Loud Vibrations: Collective Soul’s ‘Vibrations’ album review

Photo from Riff Magazine

Photo from Riff Magazine

Mike Singer, Music Manager

Collective Soul released a brand new record on Aug. 12. since the 2020 five track EP titled “Half & Half.”

 The band from the ‘90s led by vocalist Ed Roland, came out swinging with a bunch of great songs for this latest album.

 There is certainly something in the water down in Georgia due to the successful bands that have come from there. R.E.M and The Black Crowes are just two of the popular bands that share the state with Collective Soul.

 Let me first start out by saying this, before this summer, I really couldn’t name you more than five songs from this group. I was in the majority that only knew their smash hits like “Shine,” “Where The River Flows,” and my personal favorite, “December.” I am happy to announce that that has all changed.

 After listening to this new record and seeing them live in concert at the New Jersey Festival of Ballooning, they have gained a new fan for life.

 What surprised me most is the chemistry and the overall love for music that this band has.

 “Most of us grew up together and knew each other as kids, so that helps with the live chemistry,” Ed Roland said on the Collective Soul’s website. “We’re coming up on 30 years as a band, so we have to be friends first and foremost to keep it all going.”

 This ten-song track clocks in at 41 minutes of straightforward, “meat and potatoes” rock and roll.

 I’ll start by saying that the record’s first half isn’t bad but isn’t necessarily great. 

The first four songs as a group are carried by the first single that they released off the record titled “All Our Pieces.” It’s clear why “All Our Pieces,” was chosen as the first single because the second single released, “Cut The Cord,” “Reason,” and lastly, “Take,” aren’t strong songs compared to the second half of the record.

 Truthfully, that’s the only criticism I have against the record.

 The second half of the record is the strongest batch of new material that I’ve heard while reviewing music, honestly.

 From the fifth song  titled “Undone,” to the final track, “Where Do I Go,” there was not one song that I stuck my nose up at. Each song was unique and was not considered “filler.” Many of the ‘80s bands did this (ala Kiss and the “Animalize” record).

 The first song, “Undone,” opens with a cool acoustic guitar riff. Now, when I saw them perform this song in person, if memory serves me correctly, lead singer Ed Roland was playing the acoustic guitar, so I’ll give him credit for those chords. 

 The acoustic guitar riff is followed by rhythm and lead guitarist, Jesse Triplett, and Dean Roland (Ed Roland’s brother) supporting the main riff with electric guitars. I enjoy this song so much because I heard it live first so for some reason it sticks out more to me as a great song. If you can perform it and nail it live, then the studio version will be great as well.

 The next two songs, “Rule No. 1,” and “A Conversation With,” are both softer and have that ballad feel to them. The latter of which contains lyrics like “what now I am expected to do while I’m missing moments with you?” Steven Van Zandt from the E Street Band said in his autobiography that a good lead singer must make his listeners believe what he’s singing. Ed Roland does this job beautifully on both tracks as we, the listeners can feel his emotions within the song and make these two songs just that more powerful.

 The next song, “Just Looking Around,” is very upbeat and has a catchy, singalong chorus. On this particular song, Triplett isn’t trying to be overly fancy on this solo and is just playing to the feel of the song and does a great job not taking the spotlight away from the entire song.

 The last song, “Where Do I Go,” is in a close competition for my favorite song on the record. I don’t know if it’s the entire band harmonizing on the chorus, the overall mellow vibe to the song, or even the string instrument in place of a guitar solo and a piano in the outro, but something about this song makes it great and I have it on repeat as we currently speak, that’s how good of a song it is and that’s how much it stood out to me

 I really enjoyed this album, and the positives outweigh the negatives by a landslide. It’s a shame that they don’t play in bigger arenas. This new record is easily in the top five in their discography, and I enjoyed it from start to finish.


Now, for The Singer’s Thoughts:


  1. Ed Roland’s voice on the record is the same as it was live. He has done such a great job preserving his voice that he is able to sing these songs almost identically to the recorded version. This is important because if you’re playing these songs before the record is released, you want to perform these songs so people listen to and, by the record.
  2. I’m impressed by how powerful these 10 songs are on the record. Each is unique in its own way and overall, it’s a very good, strong record. That’s something that some bands nowadays can’t even say.
  3. I would 100% argue this album as one of my standout records for 2022. I think everything, from the production to the final mixing was done excellently. I’m excited about their next record.


Overall Grade: 8.5/10