Review Summary: soulDecision created a record that was quite different from their contemporaries. Trevor Guthrie's amazing vocal abilities and the band's unique blend of hip hop, R&B, and pop make this an enjoyable listen
With the plethora of boy bands: the Backstreet Boys, NSYNC, and 98 Degrees, that emerged in the late 90s, a Canadian band known as soulDecision came bursting onto the scene at the dawn of the new millennium with their record No One Does It Better
. Vocals were handled by Trevor Guthrie and David Bowman with Ken Lewko handling the keys. These guys were trying to be different from their predecessors in how they emerged listeners in their music. The catchy pop hooks are present, so are the love ballads. The thing that makes soulDecision different though is that they give off a R&B flow to some of their songs to go with that boy band pop.
The disc starts off with the band's biggest hit in Ooh It's Kinda Crazy
. From the start, one can tell Trevor Guthrie has a strong voice. It is very calm and soothing. The highlight of this song is the chorus.
"Ooh it’s kinda crazy
I’ve been thinking maybe gotta get you out of my mind
First you say you want me now your memories haunt me
Why don’t you just give me a sign"
Guthrie's emotion is the selling point of the song for me.
In fact, if it wasn't Guthrie singing, this would be a bland album. Lyrically it is the same old boy band lyrics of love and wanting that significant other. The instrumentation is there to keep the beat and are used for the atmosphere of the song. Next Time
even incorporates an acoustic guitar with that upbeat tempo to create a fun catchy song to sing along too.
Guthrie sells the music and lyrics in a way I haven't heard before in a pop band. In I Don't Need Anyone
, Guthrie uses his soulful voice to compliment the upbeat nature of the song. The vocals do have a low point. This point is the man named David Bowman. He isn't very good honestly. He is tolerable in Feelin' You
and actually really good in the backing vocals of Let's Do It Right
, but is horrendous in Only In My Mind
which is one of the worst songs I have heard. It's a cheesy 80's style song with terrible vocals and below average keys. The part that bugs me the most though, is that the keys are sensational at times. Stay
, Next Time
, and Faded
prove this the most.
is the most interesting song on this album. This is not a full blown pop track at all, it's a upbeat danceathon. This is one of the catchiest songs that I have ever heard. The little rolls and hooks that Ken Lewko does with the keyboard gets me pumped every time. This mix of hip hop beats, pop vocal styles, and even an appearance by rapper Thrust makes this the best song on the disc.
soulDecision created a record that was quite different from their contemporaries. Trevor Guthrie's amazing vocal abilities and the band's unique blend of hip hop, R&B, and pop make this an enjoyable listen. While being boring and even bad at times, one cannot deny the ability for this band to create catchy tunes. In the crazy of boy bands for that four year period from 1997-2001, I will say that soulDecision made the best album.