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Collective Soul is back
Former alternative music juggernaut Collective Soul is back with new music and a new outlook. The Georgia band will play the 9:30 Club in Washington Wednesday night

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Date published: 6/9/2005

The last we heard from Georgia-based Collective Soul, it was the year 2000.

The rock quintet had just released the oft-maligned "Blender," its fifth album in six years, and the effort of endlessly touring and recording was beginning to take its toll on what had been an alternative music juggernaut in the mid-to-late '90s.

"We were tired. It was time to take a break," Collective Soul guitarist Dean Roland said in a phone interview last week.

Collective Soul finished up its contract with Atlantic Records with a greatest-hits album in 2001 and went on hiatus.

In the intervening years, both Roland and his brother, Collective Soul vocalist Ed Roland, went through divorces. Bass player Will Turpin had a kid and Joel Kosche came on board in place of guitarist Ross Childress.

The Roland brothers, Turpin, Kosche and drummer Shane Evans finally reunited after a longer-than-anticipated vacation to record last year's "Youth" before releasing the album on the band's own El Music Group label.

Harking back to its prolific glory days, the band released a collection of acoustic tracks, titled "From the Ground Up," earlier this year.

Collective Soul's scheduled appearance Wednesday at the 9:30 Club in Washington is one in a string of club dates that serves as one big coming-out party to reintroduce Collective Soul to the world.

"We've got like 12 years worth of music to play and we're really proud of the new CD, so we'll be playing a lot of that," Dean Roland said.

Ryan Hoyle has taken over Evans' drumming duties indefinitely. Roland and his bandmates will be on the road until the end of the year with a short break in the fall, he said.

"I kind of had forgotten what [touring] was like, and then all of a sudden I'm gone for six weeks, and [I remember] 'Ah, that's what it's like,'" he said. " I remember this feeling, the old exhaustion."

In spite of the fatigue, the men of Collective Soul are compelled to pursue their passion and live their life for the sake of playing music.

After several years of hibernation, Ed Roland declares, "Let the word out, I've got to get out, Oh I'm feeling better now" in "Better Now," the first track on "Youth."

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