Twenty years ago, “Mmmbop” was heard for the first time on top-40 radio stations. Hanson took the world by storm, as teenagers everywhere became hooked on their music (well, at least a good chunk of them). I was one of those people (everybody I knew at the time was not). It seems strange that Hanson has been making music for this long, especially considering they had made an album prior to Middle of Nowhere that was never released in the US.
While they may not have released many full-length CDs, since the release of This Time Around in 2000, the band has released many smaller digital EPs to subscribers of their fan club. Each of these gives a taste of what the band has been up to, while remaining published under their own name. Some of these are brilliant, and are especially Hanson, while others (“Yell zombie – then kick him in the face; Zombie – then punch him in the nuts…”) are not as relished.
While I have never subscribed to their fan club, I can unashamedly say that I am still a fan of Hanson. Each album, including their several live works, can often be heard on shuffle on my iPod, unbeknownst to any coworkers who may mock my musical tastes (“Zombie” is not one of them). So when I saw that a greatest hits CD was being released, I was excited. Even though I already own all their physical music, this compilation includes one song never before released – in neither CD and digital format.
“I was Born” calls back to Hanson’s musical style during their Underneath years, featuring a more pop music singer-songwriter feel. Encouraging listeners to be who and what they want to be, something nobody has been before, and not let anybody step in the way, this song is perfect for a current generation being told by some people in society to hide away and ignore their dreams because they are not important. While that may not have been the intent of the song, the lyrics are the perfect words of reassurance some people, including myself, need.
Middle of Everywhere: the Greatest Hits is available in stores and digitally now.
Also, I will be taking next weekend off from writing while I celebrate my birthday. Once I return, however, I will have more content for the following weeks, starting October 14.