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Of Men And Angels


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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Samples
Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Roses (Album Version) 3:45$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. You Gotta Believe (Album Version) 3:15$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Hills And Valleys (Album Version) 3:45$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. I Want Something To Live For (Album Version) 3:59$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Walls (Album Version) 4:46$1.29  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Pull Myself Together (Don't Hate Me) (Album Version) 3:34$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Of Men And Angels (Album Version) 3:44$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. I Need A Break...But I'd Rather Have A Breakthrough (Album Version) 3:27$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Nothing Matters (Album Version) 3:23$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Japanese Exchange Student (Album Version) 3:35$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. Tara, I'm Terrible (Album Version) 2:59$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. Hey! (Album Version) 2:43$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. Let You Go (Album Version) 4:26$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen14. This Is A Refuge (Album Version) 3:49$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen15. Light (Album Version) 4:02$0.99  Buy MP3 

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Studio Update - July 2011

Biography

Texas native Bryce Avary, the singer/ songwriter/ multi-instrumentalist/ producer mastermind behind The Rocket Summer, has accomplished enough for someone a lot older, as he prepares to record his fifth full-length studio album. “We’re not talking simple acoustic solo stuff here. The music Bryce Avary makes as The Rocket Summer is lush, explosively catchy and artful power pop that ... Read more in Amazon's Rocket Summer Store

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Of Men And Angels + Do You Feel + Life Will Write the Words
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 23, 2010)
  • Original Release Date: January 1, 2010
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Island
  • ASIN: B0034BW9EM
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #60,636 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

2010 release, the fourth album from Texas Alt-Rock singer/songwriter Bryce Avary AKA The Rocket Summer. The band just completed a 34-date cross country tour and have been confirmed for the 2010 Warped Tour. The Rocket Summer has toured - and sold out - the US, Canada, the UK, and Japan numerous times and has taken bands such as Paramore, The Plain White T's, The Format and Phantom Planet on tour with him. In 2008, TRS headlined the sold-out Alternative Press tour and graced the cover of AP's magazine. They've worked with famed producers including Jim Wirt (Incubus, Hoobastank, Alien Ant Farm, Fiona Apple, and Something Corporate.) and Tim O'Hier (The All-American Rejects, Sebadoh, Hot Rod Circuit, The Jealous Sound). Of Men & Angels is the next step towards world domination!

About the Artist

Texas native Bryce Avary, the singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist mastermind behind The Rocket Summer, has accomplished enough for someone a lot older, as he prepares to release his second Island Records release (and fourth overall), Of Men and Angels, the follow-up his major label debut, 2007's Do You Feel.

Since launching his career as a 16-year-old with the independently released The Rocket Summer EP, a name he took from a Ray Bradbury short story, Bryce has toured around the world, selling out venues not just in the U.S., but Canada, the U.K. and Japan, while playing such noted events as U.K.'s Glastonbury Festival, Scotland's T in the Park, Japan's Summer Sonic Festival, Austin City Limits, SXSW, Bamboozle, Cornerstone and the 2007 Vans Warped Tour.

"With this album, I wanted to strip away some of the expectations and goals even more so that have perhaps held me back in the past," he explains. "I still tried to write songs the whole world would want to sing along to, a beautiful and huge record. But I went into it with the attitude, I want to make an album of genuine and honest songs written from my heart and personal experiences that musically and lyrically would be better than anything I had done yet and above all would be an album that would hopefully, truly move and affect people. The whole pop success is like playing the lottery anyway. Of course it would be amazing, but for me it's all about focusing everything you have on making the greatest music you can without banking on any thing else. I'm grateful to be doing this and I want to do this for the right reasons."

For someone as spiritually motivated as Avary, that means he focuses on the struggles and victories of life's often-challenging journey in Of Men and Angels. There's the fervent post-emo power-pop punk riffs propelling "You Gotta Believe," the autobiographical tale of romance and surviving the bad times in the hint of a hip-hop groove in "Hills and Valleys" and the quiet-to-loud, mud-below-to-ground-above contrast of "Light," while "Nothing Matters" is a paean to altruism and selflessness, "Pull Myself Together" about accepting grace and allowing yourself to move on while learning from your mistakes and the moving, hymnal "Walls," an epic ballad on battling depression. And if his songs often tackle serious topics, Avary isn't above concocting something more tongue-in-cheek, like "Japanese Exchange Student," which compares his social life as an up-and-coming artist to that of a student's experience in a foreign land, and "I Need a Break (But I'd Rather Have a Breakthrough)," his own sly acknowledgement of the role of luck in pop success.

Avary produced the album with CJ Eriksson, who engineered Do You Feel, recording "21 or 22 finished tracks...almost two albums' worth" at Ocean in Los Angeles and in Austin, playing, as he did on his previous albums, all the instruments himself--tackling guitar, keys, bass and drums, which were the first thing he learned as a kid.

"I wanted this to be the best record I've ever made to date, so when people look back on it, they say, `That's an album which really affected my soul.'"

In fact, The Rocket Summer has a way of getting Bryce Avary's fans to feel just that. His albums and live shows are all about positivity, optimism, seeking a higher power, overcoming our struggles.

"Yes, this is a very spiritually charged album," nods Bryce. "That's the biggest thing in my life and it's what keeps me going. That's the root of everything I do."

Musically, Avary is a one-man show--though he tours with several longtime friends--who has been compared to similar wizards and true stars like Brian Wilson, Prince or Todd Rundgren, although in an updated, anthemic punk-rock style.

"I don't intentionally set out to write radio hits, but I do want my songs to connect with the world," he says, "something that can ignite the airwaves."

"I'm happier than I've ever been about this album. Musically, I wanted it to be a little more organic, very little chopping on the drums, no autotune on the vocals, longer takes. I wanted the album to be real, but still sound slick. It just doesn't have that sterile feeling you get when things are chopped up and made computer-perfect."

There are a number of candidates for hit singles on Of Men and Angels, but wealth and fame aren't exactly the most important things on Bryce's mind.

"Walls," a song that deals directly with people's depression, shows how he uses his own experiences to comfort others going through similar situations. It helps explain the kind of viral following that turned last year's video for "Do You Feel" into an Internet phenomenon. With guest appearances by Paramore's Jeremy Davis and Josh Farro, Jack's Mannequin's Andrew McMahon, Forever the Sickest Kids' Jonathan Cook, All Time Low's Alex Gaskarth, MxPx's Mike Herrera, Hellogoodbye's Forrest Kline and Relient K's Matt Theissen, the clip led to the album version of the song being played more than 4 million times on The Rocket Summer's MySpace site.

"People start tearing up when they hear `Walls,'" nods Bryce. "We're definitely aware the kind of connection we have with our fans. I just see that as God working through the music. And I'm just fortunate to be a part of it."

In the end, Avary uses that good fortune to help others. He performed the White House last summer in connection with his support of Invisible Children, an organization dedicated to rescuing youngsters who have been kidnapped and enlisted against their will into the Ugandan army. He has also started a clothing line, `CALL IT CAPTIVATE" which donates 25% of sales to several different charities they have partnered with, from disease research and poverty aid to orphanages, leaving it up to the buyer to decide which one to the "CIC" Charities they would like to donate to.

"I like to support people who do good things," says Bryce. "I'd do this even if I weren't playing music. But I'm fortunate enough to stand in front of a microphone, so I might as well say something that helps."

"Save me/I need it/And I can't help/But feel desperate/My desires they seem/Are coming to their endings... But I will trust/It's not the end/But a great beginning." "Light"

"When there's opposition, and you know what you're doing is good, maybe it's because something bigger is actually happening," says Bryce. "You just have to hold on a little tighter, trust that things will get better. But I'm definitely not quitting."

Of Men and Angels is not the sound of someone giving up, but rather The Rocket Summer making one huge step for band-kind.

"I like the term `young veteran,'" says Avary. "But at the same time, I don't want people to think this album is not fresh. I'd be a liar if I didn't say it would be nice to have the radio and TV thing happening. I'd love to expand this, play bigger venues and reach more people. But we already have this loyal, hardcore following and I couldn't be more grateful for this. And I keep pushing myself forward, trying to make a great album, trying to put on the best live performance I can."

With Of Men and Angels, Bryce Avary shows The Rocket Summer is ready for take-off... The sky's the limit.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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See all 14 customer reviews
Lyrically beautiful and inspiring, musically powerful and uplifting.
Angela Hoach
First off, 15 songs is a pretty good number for an album; having only 10 or 11 songs that make the cut isn't unusual these days.
Kristen
You will not regret buying this album...So go and pick one up today!!!
Beatriz Lopez

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Kristen on February 23, 2010
Format: Audio CD
The Rocket Summer's Of Men and Angels just came out, and I've been loving this band's sound ever since I heard the bright, emo-tastic Hello Good Friend. Bryce Avary is a one-man wonder, playing all of the instruments himself while recording. This allows him to truly get the sound he wants and envisions. He released the You Gotta Believe EP to give a taste of the new material when his first full album in 3 years was delayed. Bryce's voice seems more mature and a little lower on this album. Maybe it's something about piano rock, or the optimism that radiates from most of his songs, or the energy of his live shows...but TRS is just a good time all around.

First off, 15 songs is a pretty good number for an album; having only 10 or 11 songs that make the cut isn't unusual these days. The leadoff track "Roses" shows off his drum talent, and the sound seems tighter and fuller than on his previous albums. "You Gotta Believe" is the feel-good single. The soul in Avary's voice is unmistakable, and everything from the guitar solo to the Michael Jackson-like quick breaths makes this an awesome song. But it's not quite as awesome as "Hills and Valleys," which has an infectious hook with amazing piano. The lyrics are sweet, simple, and happy; a dedication to touring and the ups and downs of life on the road. Probably my favorite moment on the album is when it all kicks in on "drove out to California..." The hand claps come in and it's all over. I absolutely love it. Ok I'm done...but it's SO good. Sorry.

Known for often getting spiritual on some songs, "I Want Something To Live For" tunes into a deeper theme of life and death, while "Of Men and Angels" is a track about Bryce's relationship with God and the conflicts of fame.
Read more ›
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By C J on March 26, 2010
Format: Audio CD
WOW!!! I've never listened to "The Rocket Summer" before tonight but I guess ONCE IS ALL IT TAKES!!! I started listening while working on my computer but almost immediately dropped what I was doing to give "Of Men and Angels" my full attention! Now Bryce & Co. have me hook, line and sinker! From driving melodies of "Roses" and "You Gotta Believe" to the slower tempos of "Walls" and "Tara, I'm Terrible" I listened, spellbound. Bryce's vocals on "Walls" brought to mind Rob Thomas of Matchbox 20 fame. Now my next step is to buy "Do You Feel", Rocket Summer's 2007 release!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mr. A. Ahmet on February 23, 2010
Format: Audio CD
Each time Bryce Avary from The Rocket Summer brings out a new album, I think it can't get any better. I'm wrong every time.
This album has really hit the spot - a great mix of tunes, with amazing lyrics, still with the feel good factor you can expect from mr Avary.
Another A* album, favourite songs include Roses, Hey! and I Want Something To Live For.
Art work also inspired by Banksy, which is also great!

Laura Ahmet.
Laurarocket9000
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Angela Hoach on February 23, 2010
Format: MP3 Music
This album is amazing from start to finish! Lyrically beautiful and inspiring, musically powerful and uplifting. Bryce Avary makes music from his heart that has meaning and relevance. You can't help but want to sing along with all these songs! I haven't stopped playing Of Men And Angels since I got it! Buy it, you will be so glad you did!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Di on April 22, 2010
Format: MP3 Music Verified Purchase
I've been following Mr. Avery for years now and I'm so happy he has matured to this album. I love his other albums, but just like I was younger, so was his music. I highly recommend this for driving, cleaning the house, and most importantly, if you are ever feeling down, this album is such a great picker upper!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Beatriz Lopez on March 26, 2010
Format: Audio CD
There's only one word to describe this CD...AMAZING! Bryce Avery is awesome at making music! The fact that he plays each instrument himself, is incredible. This allows for him to showcase exactly what he has pictured it to be. You will not regret buying this album...So go and pick one up today!!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Kim Adams on February 25, 2010
Format: Audio CD
The Rocket Summer is an amazing, talented band. Bryce Avary has not disappointed with this latest release. My favourite would have to be "Walls", but to be perfectly honest, it's a through-and-through solid album. I would definitely recommend it.
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