To get a glimpse of the future of rock ‘n roll, all one needs to do is catch Collective Soul on their 25th Anniversary tour when they pull into town. The Georgia-based hitmakers performed to a near capacity Colosseum at Caesars Windsor last night (June 27) with a precision and fervor I haven’t seen in years.

Having seen three generations of the band perform throughout their 25 years, this was by far the most impressive, tight and fun version of the unit to date. The songs sounded fresh, current and a little more skilled. The addition of drummer Johnny Rabb and guitarist Jesse Triplett have given the sound an edge and precision that wasn’t there a decade ago. That little boost makes Collective Soul one of the hottest bands on tour right now – and judging by the cheers from the 4,500 in attendance, the fans wouldn’t have it any other way.

Founding members guitarist Dean Rolland and bassist Will Turpin are still at the core of the music and help retain that certain vibe that only Collective Soul can pull off.

The setlist was a mishmash of material from most of the albums, with a majority coming from the self-titled blue album and the new album Blood, including the usual hits Shine, December, Gel, Precious Declaration and Run. The whole thing kicked off with an emotional version of the new album’s opening track Observation of Thoughts. Windsor was treated to a powerful version of the rarely performed Crushed as a treat.

By the end of the show, the band took their bows and left the stage with frontman E Roland (he prefers using E rather than Ed now) playing a 12-string acoustic as the audience sang the chorus of Run by themselves. He wore a wide-brimmed hat all night and removed it at the end while giving his thanks.

Collective Soul is a band that is often underestimated until one hears the hits (and there are many), but they made a lot of permanent fans tonight. The show was impressive, the sound was on the money and E Rolland was spot on with his vocals and showmanship, despite having a nagging cough and drinking some sort of elixir throughout the night to calm it down.

Collective Soul at this point is the best version of itself. The band kicks ass, they have enough hits to please even the most finicky of music fans and their new album, Blood, is just begging for some radio airplay.

And if this is the future of rock, I’m all in.

Photos by Dan Savoie

Collective Soul
Caesars Windsor
June 27, 2019

  • Observation of Thoughts
  • Heavy
  • Why, Pt. 2
  • Shine
  • Better Now
  • Now’s the Time
  • Over Me
  • Precious Declaration
  • December
  • Right as Rain
  • AYTA (Are You the Answer)
  • The World I Know
  • Crushed
  • Gel
  • Where the River Flows
  • Run

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