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'No Way To Live'- Album Review

- Jacqueline Radakovich

Colossal Street Jam 'No Way To Live' album cover Photo Credit: Tag Publicity

Rock band Colossal Street Jam released their second studio album, 'No Way to Live', on February 10, 2023. CSJ is a classic feeling rock band that started in 2016 with their first album, 'Living Free'. Their first album gained attention from critics and won awards in Australia. However, we are here to discuss their new album, which keeps their traditional flare but adds collaborative elements. No Way to Live includes 11 full songs, adding to 44 minutes of music. It started with the song, 'No Way to Live', written before COVID, about what was about to happen in our lives. The remaining songs were written around this theme. The album is optimistic to the ear, but as you listen deeper to the lyrics, you can find that the band wrote about difficult topics that people could relate to.

Listening to No Way to Live feels like a rock concert in your favorite local bar. It reminded me of my family. I had never listened to this band before, but it felt like I had, not in that they sounded basic or boring but in a comforting way. They were able to capture the essence of the classic rock era of the 70s and 80s while still adding their elements. This makes the music feel brand new but nostalgic at the same time. The first band I thought of while listening was Kid Rock. This album reminds me of Kid Rock’s Rock n Roll Jesus album because they both have a hard, classic rock feeling with jazzy undertones and female background singers. It also reminds me of Black Crowes.

The album kicks off with “No Way to Live”, which was the whole basis of the album. This song is upbeat and gains the attention of listeners. The opening guitar and jazz components grab your attention and make you want to keep listening. It sounds like a classic upbeat rock n roll song, while its lyrics describe a sad and repetitive way to live. You can rock out to this song but still listen to it when you are irritated with the world around you. It is relatable to the listener as we all went through the same thing at the time this song was written.

The closing song on the album is called “Songbird (Reprise)”. Originally, the song “Songbird” debuted on CSJ’s first album, Living Free. The reprise version is the same song but includes more strings and sounds more orchestral than the original. The added strings make it sound more like a story and conclude the album well. I think this was a great choice putting this song at the end of No Way to Live. It fits the vibe of the album well and the overall message of the album. “Songbird (Reprise)” is the saddest and slowest song on the album, but this does not mean you should skip over it. The song is genuinely enjoyable to listen to and still gives me that nostalgic feeling of a rock ballad.

Overall, this album is worth a listen and might give you a different view of modern rock. Colossal Street Jam is the perfect example of a modern classic rock band, and I believe they have a bright future ahead of them. No Way to Live is full of upbeat rock songs and concludes perfectly with a ballad. Of course, the album has several honorable mentions, but you will have to listen to the whole thing to get the full experience.


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