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O.A.R. takes reins of its next album

@graffonmusic, Facebook.com/Gary Graff on Music

Posted: Sunday, June 30, 2013

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O.A.R. fans might not know songs such as "Caroline the Wrecking Ball" and "Catching Sunlight." But if the band has its way, they'll be familiar by the end of the summer.

Those are among the new songs the Columbus, Ohio-formed quintet is working on for its next album, the follow-up to 2011's "King." "We're really excited," says saxophonist Jerry DePizzo. "We kind of took this one by the reins and we're (producing) it ourselves. I think it's an honest record for us. Of course, we always feel that way; if you write, record and produce a record from the heart, from the guy, the audience is really gonna react to it -- our audience, at least.

"So, yeah, we're really excited to go out and play these new songs."

DePizzo says the as-yet-untitled set, which is being recorded in Brooklyn and Bethesda, Md., is "pretty far along," spearheaded by frontman Marc Roberge but with the other five members actively involved. "There's some things on this record that really stretch out, songs that are some real journeys," DePizzo says. "There's seven-, eight-minute tunes all the way to some clear and concise stuff I think will connect with a broader audience.

"It's been extremely comfortable to make so far. Everyone had a clear, straight goal going forward with it. It's been a lot of fun to go in and work on everything and see what works and what doesn't and ultimately be responsible for the way it's going to turn out. That's kind of new for us."

O.A.R., Andrew McMahon and Allen Stone perform at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, June 30, at the Meadow Brook Music Festival on the campus of Oakland University, Rochester Hills. Tickets are $37.50 pavilion, $26 lawn with a $64 lawn four-pack. Call 248-377-0100 or visit www.palacenet.com.

Web Site: www.palacenet.com

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