While the Calling don't blaze any new trails on Camino Palmero
, they have revived the power ballad to give it their own emotionally charged spin. And if that weren't enough, they inject so many inspirational messages into the 11 songs on their debut that one could almost mistake them for a contemporary Christian band.
Musically, this band stands proudly next to such earnest forebears as Creed, matchbox twenty, and Lifehouse (the latter makes sense given that Calling guitarist Sean Woolstenhulme's brother, Rick, is Lifehouse's drummer). With their brooding, contemplative lyrics about love, loss, rejection and revenge, the Calling embark on an anxious journey into the state of modern relationships. And while they don't offer any conclusions, they certainly provide an interesting mirror on an apprehensive time. Along with their sturdy musicianship and rhythmically driven melodies, this band very likely will enjoy a longer shelf life than most of their contemporaries. --Jaan Uhelszki
CD RCA, 916102, Jewel Case 12 Track 2001