By Greg Cohen
Collective Soul brought their 2015 See What You Started Tour to the Marquee Theater in Tempe, AZ on November 16, 2015. The set was well crafted, beginning and ending with exactly the music their longtime fans came to hear. The show began with December, the guitar intro beginning before the band appeared on stage. From there the band moved into a broader exploration of their extensive catalogue – beginning with radio hit December before moving into more recently released tracks.
Frontman Ed Roland was in fine form, moving around the stage with ease throughout the set. Despite being in his early 50’s, Roland’s voice sounds great and retains many of the same distinctive qualities that has made Collective Soul’s music instantly recognizable by the sound of his voice alone.
Recently added guitarist Jesse Triplett sounded great. During the show Rowland spoke about the importance to him of crafting a song that includes a strong lead guitarist who can carry a guitar solo. Triplett demonstrated that he is fulling capable of fulfilling those duties and did so with his own sense of dramatic style.
Songs from the recently released album See What You Started by Continuing filled-out the middle part of the set. Released October 2, the album reached the top of the Billboard Alternative Album Chart the week of October 24. The songs from the new album blended seamlessly with the hit songs that have made Collective Soul so popular and radio-friendly. Seemingly acknowledging that fans come to concerts to hear a band’s big hits and not necessarily the most recent album the band is supporting, Rowland thanked the audience several times for letting the band play tracks from the new album. That being said, in this case no thanks was really needed because of how well the new songs fit in with the overall set.
The band also tested a new track titled Just Looking Around. Rowland introduced it as being only partially finished with just one verse written. Rowland’s candor about trying out a new song felt sincere and somewhat refreshing.
Rowland’s energy and enthusiasm was infectious and his sincerity endearing as Collective Soul put on a thoroughly enjoyable and entirely satisfying concert.
Photos by Greg Cohen
Photos © 2015 Greg Cohen
The setlist consisted of:
- Precious Declaration
- Why, Part 2
- Just Looking Around (unfinished, unreleased)
- Better Now
- Memoirs of 2005
- The World I know
- Where the River Flows
- Feel Like Making Love