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Copeland’s latest urges listeners to be In Motion

You may know them from tours with the likes of Switchfoot and Sparta, but with the release of their new album In Motion, Copeland may have an association all their own.

Copeland’s first album, Beneath Medicine Tree, established the Atlanta-based, four member band with “their sound”-emo rock with soothing melodies and angst-filled lyrics.

In Motion takes the Copeland sound down new roads. Unlike other bands in their genre such as Taking Back Sunday, whose second album seems to be merely a continuation of the first, Copeland has progressed to a more pop-rock sound that preserves some of their emo flavor.

Lead singer Aaron Marsh wrote about the upbeat sound on Copeland’s website biography:

“I said that with Beneath Medicine Tree I wanted to make a record that moves people. With In Motion, I wanted to make a record that makes people move,” said Marsh.

Marsh got his wish. Your Love is a Fast Song is one of the album’s punchier songs, with its heavy guitar use and rock rhythm, while Pin Your Wings carries a catchy pop-rock sound that could easily land it a radio spot.

But punk fans should rock out while they can, because In Motion has some gentler surprises that could leave them sputtering in indignation.

For the rest of us, the beauty of Kite makes it an important addition to the album. The antique sound of accordion accompaniment complements the soaring vocals of Marsh as he reaches notes even girls might have difficulty hitting.

Fans may recall that Sleep was released earlier in the year on an EP, but the song has had an overhaul which brought its original dance beat down to a slower, more melodic, classical sound.

You Love to Sing also hones in on the more melodic, but the song loses some of its catchiness as it quickly becomes lyrically cliché. The chorus tells listeners to “Sing with your head up, with your eyes closed, not because you love the song, because you love to sing.”

The album was mixed by Ken Andrews (Mae, Tenacious D) who also mixed Copeland’s first release. Andrews ambitiously added some twelve-string guitar parts to You Have My Attention, but the song loses its edge in the bridge as the guitars’ mixing fails to complement Marsh’s vocals.

However, Andrews is easily redeemed by Don’t Slow Down, a track originally written solo by bassist and guitarist Brian Laurenson. Reworked by the band and then mixed, the song beautifully silhouettes Marsh’s vocals against a single guitar.

Copeland pulled out all their resources for the new sound of In Motion. The album was released by Militia Group on March 22 and success is already in sight. The band was hoping for 600 albums to be pre-ordered through their website. The reality? In Motion snagged some 2,000 orders.

Next year, maybe Switchfoot will be opening for Copeland.

Visit the band’s website at www.thecopelandsite.com

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