Wednesday 16 Apr

Dustin Prinz - Eleven

Few musicians take the time to master their instrument in the way that Oklahoma City singer-songwriter Dustin Prinz has; he’s a guitar virtuoso in every sense of the word, and Eleven gives him the chance to show just how far he can push that skill.
04/15/2014 | Comments 0

Horse Thief – Fear in Bliss

Listening to Horse Thief’s previous release — the haphazardly melodramatic Grow Deep, Grow Wild — felt like a chore. Whatever potential the Oklahoma City folk-pop act demonstrated on the EP was obscured behind a formulaic, contrived and ultimately hollow cloud. But it at least offered a glimmer of promise for a band consisting of, frankly, five pretty talented dudes. Critics saw it; the band’s management saw it; its current label, Bella Union, saw it; and its increasingly fervid fan base saw it.
04/08/2014 | Comments 0

Colourmusic — May You Marry Rich

There’s always a sense of danger when debuting songs in a live setting and playing them well. Without having heard the studio versions, expectations are set according to the live incarnations. But capturing the breadth of free-flowing atmosphere and sheer volume on a disc, vinyl or digital file isn’t the easiest thing to do, especially for a band as vociferous as Colourmusic.
04/01/2014 | Comments 0

Em and the MotherSuperiors — Churches into Theaters

As titles go, Churches into Theaters is an apt descriptor for the debut album from Oklahoma City rockers Em and the MotherSuperiors. It’s a reverential record, one that shares the gospel of classic rock, blues and soul but embraces the need to refashion it for modern times, channeling The Dead Weather, Grace Potter and Cage the Elephant along the way.
03/25/2014 | Comments 0

Rachel Brashear — Revolution

Rachel Brashear’s second EP, Revolution, starts with a kick to the shins.
03/18/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Music · Music · Switch on

Switch on

The guys of Switchfoot pray you’ll move your feet to Frontier City for their blessed brand of hard rock.

Joshua Boydston August 10th, 2011

7 p.m. Saturday
Frontier City
11501 N. Interstate 35 Service Road
Free with park admission

Switchfoot’s songs are meant to be so much more than melodies.

“It’s more than just catchy hooks that grasp a listener for a month out of their life,” said bassist Tim Foreman. “It feels like people are really on the journey with us. Music got me through a lot of tough times. Fortunately, I think we are that band for a number of people.”

Inspiring hope is the end goal, but it had been a fight for the San Diego five-piece to spread that message to a wider base than the Christian roots from which it was born. Not that their songs ever were aimed exclusively to that camp, as chart-toppers “Dare You to Move” and “Meant to Live” showed. The big, moving anthems felt — in many ways — universal, and being saddled with the Christian-rock label felt unfair and undesirable for all involved.

Switchfoot’s members wear their faith proudly; they just don’t invite the division that comes from that label.

“A lot of people have a hard time understanding the difference between a faith and a genre,” Foreman said. “We see that as two different questions. We want our songs to be heard by everybody. That’s where they belong.”

What’s pushed them over the hump may be the subtlety with which the group approaches the subject matter; asking big questions that everyone would like the answer to.

“We’re trying to be poetic with our lyrics,” he said. “I’m attracted to music that’s artful in how it’s delivered, not with a hammer, but with a little artistry. It leaves a little to be interpreted in their own way, and we want this to be something anyone can find meaning in.”

That philosophy has served the group well, even as recently as this year when Switchfoot won a Grammy for Best Rock Gospel Album for “Hello Hurricane.” Its follow-up, “Vice Verses,” is due next month, and Foreman said it’s a total departure from its award-winning predecessor.

“It’s suicide for a band to try and make the same album twice,” he said. “You try to jump on a different train track without derailing entirely. That’s a challenge, how to reinvent yourself without alienating people on board. I think with ‘Vice Verses,’ we’ve done that the best we ever had as a band. We took some risks.”

Switchfoot has ditched the gloss of “Hello Hurricane” for a more aggressive, drum- and bass-driven collection of songs — owing more to Dave Grohl than Bono — but still kept that soul alive and well.

“We knew we wanted to start something new to capture what we loved about that record. The heartbeat behind it translated to a new musical space,” Foreman said. “It feels like the start of something good for us.”

Photo by Tom Stone

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