on August 19, 2011
"Never Going Back to OK" is really a fantastic album. The Afters have really combined their great songwriting, harmonies, talents and passions for their faith to make some great music. I would say "I hope they have more great albums to come!" but I have already been listening to their later albums for years now. Since I was going back in time, I was eager to hear what their earlier work sounded like, and I am enjoying it just as much.
From their driving rock songs like the title track, "Never Going Back to OK," to more fun, upbeat and poppy songs like "Myspace Girl," they are positive and confident, displaying a mentality and providing an overall feeling that can sometimes be hard to find today. Furthermore, their slower, beautiful and melodic ballads ("Summer Again" and MOST IMPORTANTLY "Ocean Wide") make me look into my own heart, look at the world in a slower, more picturesque manner, and say a couple words of thanks for the wonderful gift of music. Their music helped me in a difficult time of self-discovery and trying to re-establish my faith, and I am very thankful for groups like this.
Favorite track on the album, without a doubt, is "Ocean Wide."
They are a "Christian Band." Their music is classified as religious. They send strong messages of hope, love and faith. But that doesn't mean you have to be a religious person to enjoy their music.
Listeners who enjoy this album should definitely check out their debut album, "I Wish We All Could Win"
on January 13, 2009
After bursting onto the scene in 2005, The Afters' follow-up is a smart, layered success. Song topics include a desire to move forward in our relationship with God ("Never Going Back to OK"), finding Christ ("Falling Into Place"), and making the most of every day ("One Moment Away"). I'm likely one of the few people who doesn't like the hit song "Myspace Girl" -- it doesn't fit the album. But the rest is well worth checking out.
on February 26, 2008
I had the opportunity to hang out w/ The Afters band one week prior to the release of this album. I was honored to have a sneak peek and hear all the songs and hear the stories behind the songs. This band is listed as a Christian Rock Band, and I am not a Christian, so this is not what draws me to them. They are deeply feeling men who love their families and their children and their faith! Each song has a nice beat and a catchy chorus without being too pop 40 sounding. Myspace girl is a true story and that is the most tongue and cheek song on the album. Every song is good. These guys are going to go FAR with their clean, honest and wonderful heart that is felt on this album.
on November 14, 2012
I first caught wind of the Afters on a local christian station. The first song I heard was Light up the Sky. I thought to myself, wow how is this not being played on every radio station! I quickly purchased the cd and was delighted to find out that they are by no means a one hit wonder. They have a great sound with really catchy hooks and chorus pieces. Very inspiring lyrics and uplifting as well. I usually get tired of a cd after a while, but this cd as well as their other cd's have a permanent spot in my cd changer. I wish more people could be exposed to them. The never going back to ok album is a more rocky album but has a bunch of songs that should be easily making the top 100 charts. I love how they incorporate the piano into a lot of their songs. Keeping me alive is my personal favorite, although the list of my favorite afters songs would be quite long.
Anyway, buy this cd as well as Light up the Sky, Wish we All Could Win, the Life is Beautiful Single.. and then even go one step further and buy a cd called When the World is Wonderful by Blisse, that was the precursor band to the Afters. Really really addicting stuff.
on December 26, 2009
The Afters' style isn't unique, but their execution of it is perfect. There's not a single song on this album that I don't enjoy. The faster songs are all catchy, the slower songs all beautiful. I can wholeheartedly recommend buying this album in full.
My favorite songs:
Tonight - catchy rhythm
Ocean Wide - very pleasing melody (though this is the sort of song I could see getting overplayed...)
Myspace Girl - cute and funny, and even better because it's based on a true story of their former bass player
We Are the Sound - this is the first song I heard by them, and it immediately intrigued me--I love the changing time signature
My only complaint would be that some of the slower songs' melodies sound similar, but I suppose that's a complaint that holds for a lot of the music played on the radio (and these songs are definitely radio-playable).
Overall, great album that you can listen to in its entirety without skipping any tracks! :)
on October 26, 2011
I wish The Afters would keep putting out records like this. Light Up the Sky was a huge step backwards for the group, in my opinion. This is my new favorite cd so I should be careful because I don't wanna get sick of it. But how is that possible? I dunno. Very well done, and I've heard alot of music. In comarison to any other bands, I would say Anberlin, except...better. Yeah...I said it. Ha!
on October 14, 2008
In my review of their popular but dull debut, I asked if The Afters would take hold of their potential in their sophomore effort. Now that the album is upon us, and I've thoroughly scrutinized it, I can say that with confidence that it's a strong effort, but still not great.
First off, I pre-ordered the album, and got it at FCS for $5. 12 tracks for $5, or even $12 is a good deal, and I applaud the band for providing more material. There's no fillers, and "The Secret Parade," which happens to be the shortest track, has a unique sound which everybody had dubbed "Beatles-esque." Whether it should be compared to the Fab 4 is mute, but isn't everybody doing that nowadays?
Highlights include the familiar "Never Going Back To OK," the slightly cheesy but highly emotional "Ocean Wide," the power rocker "We Are The Sound," and the absolute highlight, the best song made about the popular social-networking disaster, "MySpace Girl" is an extremely catchy pop rock song containing every lyrical nugget you can drag out of the site. He's putting her in his top 8 spaces, it's "OurSpace," and the list goes on. Again, a bit cheesy, but these songs usually are.
Unfortunately, the back half of the album is not as good as the first half, but they all have their moments. In fact, looking back on this album, there isn't any track I could point to and say, that's the weak-spot. But as in songs like "One Moment Away," as good as they may be on their own, they kind of get lost in the shuffle of the album, and an hour or two after listening, you've forgotten half the tracks. Maybe it's songs like "Summer Again," which try too hard to be that love ballad, while still putting up a good effort. It's like the guy guessing somebody's weight at a carnival. He may have had the general range, but he was still 10 lbs. off.
And how could I end without talking about the Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy inspired "Forty-Two." In case you don't know, in the book, the author used the number 42 as the random meaning of life in his comedic take on the exploration of philosophy. So of course, the singer in the song wants to know the meaning of his life, and the lyrics do a decent job with the subject matter. But at this point you really get "The Afters' Sound", and you're really wanting them to change it at least a bit at this point.
Overall, The Afters seem to be stepping up the latter, but they're taking it in increments. While the album contains many a strong track, they're sticking value is debatable, and I think they could have done better with an already job well done. Next album, the band should just let it all hang out, which they attempt to do in this record, but never really stick that foot off the cliff. Of course, at the rate they're going at now, their third project should be a five-star effort all the way.
on August 29, 2008
I got this album like several many can relate, for that one good radio hit! It has it on here "Keeping Me Alive". As for the other songs, hit or miss. The band's lyrics unlike sanctus real or kutless doesn't sound quite so much christian but more like pop. Which isn't a bad thing, but it should be listed as a pop/rock not christian album. It seems like after hearing this band it makes me think that any band can have one sort-of christian song on it and it gets labeled as a christian album. Myspace girl is a cool other song though. It does warn about the dangers of our youth getting caught up in online dating relationships. I feel comfortable listening to this album but I fear those that aren't Christians couldn't tell I was listening to a Christian group. Its not a bad album. I still like it quite a bit, but if you're looking for a group that has more solid Christ Centered emphasis lyrics, I'd recommend not picking up this one. I have heard a brief bio of Josh, the main singer of the band on Klove and he seems like he is a christian, but if so, he should help the group put more of an emphasis on their faith.