Hanson Rides Again!

Hanson's second album boasts mature music and impressive lyrics.

Three very passionate, excited, teenage boys who claim to be heavily influenced by the music styles of the sixties can be seen peering behind the whirlwind that their album "This Time Around" caused when it released earlier this year.

These dedicated evangelical Christians by religion have successfully created a host of modern tunes and beats in "This Time Around" and added a healthy dose of blues and rock and roll to their concoction. The result? Some hummable, mature music with impressive self-written lyrics from a band that bosts of fans of every age, worldwide.

Each of their tracks in the collection is distinct. "Dying To Be Alive", an inspirational song, is backed by a gospel choir led by Rose Stone (a member of the sixties' band "Sly And The Family Stone"); "Save Me" sports a tabla sequence; and "If Only", a catchy, sunny song incorporates enthusiastic rushes of harmonica by John Popper of Blues Traveler fame. The title song's guitar is played by teenage artist Johnny Lang. Besides the variety of sounds in the above mentioned, "Love Song" and "A Song To Sing" are soft while "Runaway Run" and "You Never Know" are funky and infectious.

Isaac (19), Taylor (17) and Zachary (13) have a style that sets them apart from other teen groups. They seem to remain more loyal to their idea of what music should be and don't succumb to the label of "teen pop icons", preferring to keep away from that confining stereotype. Their use of repetitive lyrics, a versatile manipulation of guitar strings, racy, no-time-to-breathe drums and a distinctive rock flavour is the source of their appeal. Hanson is a group that makes us wonder what they'll come up with the next time around.

This article was first published on 26 Jun 2000.