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Self Made Soul
The Future Belongs To Us
(self-released)
www.selfmadesoul.net


Times are tough - we all know this. The economy is in a downward spiral, people aren't spending like they used to and there just doesn't seem to be enough money and luxury to go around. The modern day's financial crisis can also be used as a metaphor on the current state of music. There are so many starving acts out there looking to have their hunger fulfilled, but sadly, the pie of success is a small one. But even though any aspiring musician's future my seem bleak, there is definitely something commendable about certain acts who still try to suffer through and make it. I see Self Made Soul and their latest album The Future Belongs To Us as such. The world of rock n' roll seems to be especially difficult to break into but such intimidation hasn't stopped the Connecticut foursome from putting together a considerably cohesive and effective collection of tracks. Some may wish to genre-pick the band into minute categories, but when it comes down to basics SMS have made, quite simply, a rock record.

Thankfully, the band doesn't place itself within the over-crowded pop-punk corner, like their promotional photos hint that they might. Instead there is an evident focus on the music itself, labels be damned. In an oddly effective way, the gentleness and fragility of Jimmy Eat World has been merged with the blunt snarl of '90's rockers like Collective Soul and the associated. Lead singer Alexander Anderson has vocals that really take hold of many of the tracks, with a range of warm emotions and unrelenting power. Though the first half of the album had me slightly skeptical, upon reaching "Only The World Will End" and following track "Alive", a certain charm began to overtake the CD. It's the charm of seeing an up-and-coming band expertly perform songs that are, in themselves, well-written.

A motif of the hopeful unknown and ever-changing future is sewn throughout the fabric of this record, which is the perfect attitude for Self Made Soul to have at this point in their career. They are currently traveling the country promoting their new baby, and with such a solid release from such a relative newcomer to the recording scene, I am positive that they will convert fans with each show they perform. It's a rocky road to reach success in the music business, but Self Made Soul definitely have the gumption and talent to make it.

-Josh Page

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