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Comprised of brothers Bo and Bear Rinehart with Seth Bolt and Josh Lovelace, South Carolina-born NEEDTOBREATHE has taken the music world by storm with an authentic blend of fun, faith, and southern charm. The group's anticipated sixth studio recording HARDLOVE is the sonic culmination of their joys and struggles in growing from small-town boys to top-bill national musicians. Recently we had a chance to ask the band some questions about their new album, the creative process, and life on the road.
CBD Jim: Building on the folk wisdom that 'nothing worth having is easy', can you describe the creation of your new album H A R D L O V E, particularly in light of the joys and struggles you faced along the way, both as a band and as a family?
NEEDTOBREATHE Josh: When we were recording our last record, Rivers in the Wasteland, we were living in the darkest season of our band’s career. Our relationships with each other were pretty much non-existent. We came to a breaking point and decided that if we were going to be a band anymore, we had to change everything about how we did things. Through all that, we came out the other side stronger and better people than before, ready to create and collaborate together again.
H A R D L O V E is us challenging ourselves to try some new things and create something that paints a vibrant picture of our lives today.
As sonic storytellers, much of your music is built from life experience- however there's also obviously some character study and parable. Aside from your own walks of life and faith, where have you found inspiration for your tales?
Inspiration is everywhere. Creating from a place where life is your muse can be an endless road with many stories to tell. As songwriters, we just try to keep our eyes open.
Going back to folk wisdom, there's another saying- "if it ain't broke don't fix it." With the addition of synths and electronics to the NEEDTOBREATHE sound, it seems your reply might be "don't mean it can't be better!" Was this an intentional decision to try and do something different, or did it grow naturally into the songwriting and arranging process?
It felt like the most natural next step for us. Our last record was very stripped back and intimate so we wanted to do something new that sounded totally different. We always try to challenge ourselves to do things we’ve never done so this was our attempt at that. Creating a new sonic landscape was like learning a new language to say things in a fresh way. We set out to change it all up and we are proud of the chances we took.
A full tour schedule has you circling the US throughout 2016. Do you have any favorite stops along the way? Best food on tour?
2016 has been and will continue to be a busy year for us. We are hitting up so many of our favorite places this fall on the TOUR DE COMPADRES. Red Rocks in Colorado has been circled for months so we are excited to be headed back there. Portland, Oregon is also one of my favorite places to visit. As far as food, Rendezvous in Memphis is a must stop when we are passing through. I have a list of restaurants from across the US on my phone to try out. So much food, so little time.
If you could put together a dream festival lineup, which bands or artists, currently working or otherwise, would you recruit to share the bill?
The original line up of Led Zeppelin, The Band with Levon Helm setting the pace, and either Sam & Dave or Otis Redding. Oh yeah, and NEEDTOBREATHE of course! Wouldn’t miss that lineup for anything!
The sixth studio album from the brothers Rinehart and company finds the group reflecting on the tumultuous seasons behind their recent albums Rivers In The Wasteland and The Reckoning, enjoying unprecendented success while undergoing personal conflict. Recorded at the band's own Plantation Studios outside Charleston, SC, HARD LOVE broadens the band's established sound with synths and electronic elements, fusing the styles of modern pop with strains of vintage gospel, soul, blues, country, and rock. This twelve track collection includes lead singles "Happiness" and "Money & Fame," plus "No Excuses," "Great Night" (featuring Charleston duo Shovels & Rope), and more.