With a southern rock meets gospel sound, Grammy-nominated South Carolina natives NEEDTOBREATHE performed in Niagara Falls Saturday at Rapid’s Theater to support their latest album, Hard Love. Commonly referred to as a “Christian Rock” band, NEEDTOBREATE has tweaked their sound each album leading to crossover success in various musical genres. Lead by brothers Bear and Bo Rinehart, fellow bandmates Seth Bolt and Josh Lovelace blend their unique vocal qualities to create a mix between power ballads and coffee shop singles.
With a more electronic sound, Hard Love, painted a picture of the highs and lows of a rock and roll family regressing to their original garage-band roots. As a follow-up to their 2014 Rivers in a Wasteland, which debuted at No. 3 in the Billboard 200 chart, Hard Love proved to be the bands highest charting album, debuting at No. 2.
A hopeful and energetic album, Hard Love paints the basic message that love is anything, but easy. Very open about their internal hardships as a band, NEEDTOBREATE musically penned the constant need to step back and be open with one another. With success comes challenges. More radio play leads to longer tours, longer tours lead to later nights. However very humble about their success, the band is constantly thanking those of whom made it all happen, the fans.
Their highest charting single, “Brother” was written by guitarist Bo Rinehart for his brother Bear. Often joking that the song was penned as a love song for one another, the song tells a tale of the bands low point amidst their commercial success. During a period when the only time the band would spend time together was on stage in front of a live audience, the two decided it was best to put the title brothers ahead of business partners. The band would later collaborate with Gavin Degraw on the official single version of the song.
An evening that included songs from their six album discography, the band also treated the crowd to a stripped down acoustic version of the Ben E King classic, “Stand By Me.” At various points in their performance, the crowd could often be heard singing over the mic’d musicians. Closing their set at center stage, the four asked the crowd for complete silence (even pointing out that means not singing along).
Performing an unplugged version of their single “The Outsiders,” along with a teaser verse from the song “Slumber.” No offensive lyrics, no wild onstage antics, no in-between song drinking…for some this could mean “no fun”, however NEEDTOBREATHE doesn’t need distractions to prove they have talent.
NEEDTOBREATHE’s All the Feels Tour continues through December.