I have no problem telling you I have been looking forward to O.A.R.’s new album All Sides. I am a huge O.A.R. fan. I bet I have listened to or watched Live At Madison Square Garden in it’s entirety easily a hundred times. O.A.R. is what I go to when I am down and need a little pick me up, it is what I put on when I hit the deck and fire up the grill, and it is what I put on when I want to have a drink and a good time.
When I listened to All Sides for the first time today I wasn’t overwhelmed. My exact feeling was I like it, and it is good but I haven’t fallen in love with anything yet. The sound is different on this CD. The amazing saxophone we are accustomed to isn’t as prevalent as it was on past CD’s and it has given way to more of a piano presence. The sax isn’t gone but it has taken a step back on many songs.
The second time I listened to All SidesI started catching myself repeating song and thinking you know, I kinda like that. By the third time I listened to it I noticed my head bobbing back and forth with the beat of the songs and really starting to enjoy myself. I really think O.A.R. fans are gonna have to give this one a second listen to get over the changes.
Some things that haven’t changed on All Sides are the expert musicians, soulful lyrics, and Marc’s wonderful vocals. I also suspect we will be hearing the new song “This Town” opening up a few O.A.R. concerts. There also isn’t a bad song on it. If you have Live At Madison Square Garden you will recognize “Living In The End” and “Something Coming Over”. “Shattered” is the current release and it gives a very good example of the new sound and it is also a very catchy tune. Also included are a couple of slower songs that have excellent messages in them, “The Gift” and “On My Way”.
All Sides has really grown on me as an O.A.R. fan and I have no doubt it will be getting plenty of play in my rotation. Excellent CD from an excellent band.