Bands like Sister Hazel are living proof that a major label deal is not the be-all and end-all of a career. While signed to Universal, Sister Hazel found fame with “All For You,” but then quickly felt the wrath of ruthless corporate accountants searching for a bottom line. Undeterred, the Gainesville, FL, band soldiered on. Lift is their third independent release via the independent Sixthman Records.
Their previous studio release, Chasing Daylight, is the band’s best work to date, and although Lift doesn’t quite reach those heights, it’s still a typical SH album packed with stirring anthems (“Surrender”), wistful ballads (“In The Moment”) and one or two high tempo rockers performed in the band’s signature country rock style (“Lay It Down”).
The band attempts to cover new ground with the album’s first single, a cover of The Cars’ “Just What I Needed.” It’s not that different from the original, and I suspect fans will be instead buying this record for originals like the delicate piano ballad “World Inside My Head” and the heartfelt “Another Me.”
With the number of bands released from major label contracts recently, this album serves as inspiration for artists who wish to challenge the natural order of things in an ever changing music industry.
Sister Hazel: www.sisterhazel.com