Waiting For Change
Waiting For Change (Ear Candy Records)

By Victoria Moon

Not so long ago, there was a quirky pop band named Fish Tales. Fish Tales was composed of three talented musicians -- Eddy Morris, Mike Morris and Moon -- and was a pretty decent band in its own right, garnering positive critical reviews, an award or two and two albums under its belt. The problem with Fish Tales was that its two main songwriters, Eddy Morris and Moon, had two divergent songwriting styles that occasionally led to the criticism that Fish Tales was actually two bands struggling to squeeze themselves into one. In 1997, the band broke up and Moon went off to record a solo project while the Morris brothers reformed as Waiting For Change and started writing and recording a bunch of new songs. The final result of their work is this self-titled debut release.

The first thing you realize as you listen to Waiting For Change is how much more cohesive its sound is than former Fish Tales efforts. Eddy Morris, the primary songwriter for the band, is firmly entrenched in the world of modern rock, but he also has a great ear for catchy melodies, which raises this project above the level of many "alternative flavor-o-the-month" bands. Songs like "1983" and "Potter's Field" are sing-alongs waiting to happen, and Morris has a real gift for seamlessly twisting pop hooks into a heavy rock sound (provided quite nicely by Mike Morris on drums). Morris also shows great promise lyrically in songs such as "Tyler Nicole" and "Taj Mahal." It's tough to write a decent love song in today's world, but he somehow manages to pull it off.

Waiting For Change works best when they mix a distinctive brew of modern rock, a trippy, Seventies' pop sensibility and heavily spiritual lyrics. The band's missteps are few, resulting more from too much a good thing than anything else. There are seventeen songs on the album, and there are occasional musical experiments that don't quite fit with the rest of their sound, such as "Remain In You." However, the band deserves high marks for having the guts to explore their musical genre and push its edges a bit. I was also quite impressed with the professional sound of the album's production, since the band recorded, produced and engineered this album themselves.

Waiting For Change has more power-pop and infectious grooves than many Top 40 acts out there today, and certainly deserves a listen. There is no reason why "I Was Wrong," "Taj Mahal" or "1983" shouldn't get regular airplay on radio. Waiting For Change may not be waiting long for a record deal if they continue writing songs as good as these.