Most ’90s alternative bands have long since disappeared — be it from lack of interest, internal discord, deaths or other unforeseen circumstances — but Collective Soul is one of the few who have continued on in spite of such troubles. Lineup changes have occurred, they’re no longer a chart-topping member of Atlantic Records and it seems like eons ago that they achieved the distinction of producing more No. 1 rock radio hits than any other band in the post-grunge era, but they are definitely alive and kicking.
Still known for the riff-filled rocker “Heavy,” the iconic crunchy rock licks of “Shine” and the more emotionally charged orchestral modern rock of “The World I Know” or “December,” Collective Soul has forged a number of different paths in the music world in recent years. The band formed their own label, El Music Group, in 2004, have self-released four records (Youth, From the Ground Up, Afterwords and Collective Soul), and all of their current members have engaged themselves in side projects since this last release.
Now at work on its ninth studio album of new material, the band has not lost its touch even if it no longer rules the alternative rock world. Ed Roland’s vocals are as distinctive and solid as ever, the band’s message leans heavily on the positive side of things as always, and they can still rock with the best of ’em.
Collective Soul plays 8:30 pm Friday, July 19, at the Linn County Fair; free with fair admission, $15 limited reserved seating.