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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Review: SPiN – h-Factor EP

SPiN – h-Factor EP
2009, SPiN

Philadelphia-based rockers SPiN made a big splash in 2008 with their debut release, SPiN EP, which FMQB termed as “easily one of the surprises of the year”. SPiN’s track Home rose to #7 on the FMQB charts and garnered SPiN national attention. The band, which traces back to the collaboration of vocalist Eric Rothenheber (E) and keyboardist Jim Vacca in high school. Guitarist Henry Cieplinksi and drummer Lou Chudnofsky quickly jumped on board and SPiN was born. SPiN takes the melodic rock tendencies of 1970’s heavyweights Styx or Queen while maintaining a modern edge that makes them highly appealing across several age demographics. SPiN returns in 2009 with the 3-song h-Factor EP, a brief but exciting step forward for a band that’s already evolving into a more dynamic sound.

h-Factor opens with Hurt By You, a mid-tempo big-rock tune that sounds like what you might get if you cross Styx with Bon Jovi. The song is eminently marketable and has the potential to be a real hit for the band. This is the sort of tune that, if it gets the right break, could rule airwaves for a summer. Left Behind is a honey-coated power ballad that shows off E’s big front man pipes; he sounds like he born to front a rock band. The comparison to Bon Jovi is particularly apropos when it comes to E, who could pass for him vocally at times; and the guitar work in this song is eerily reminiscent of Brian May in the solo. Now it’s one thing to recall other artists with a sound, but Shine, a great song in itself, may have some real similarity issues. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a well-written song, but once you get to the chorus you’ll be certain it was lifted note-for-note from Lonestar’s Amazed. The words are different, and there is some variation, but it’s so close that it will be noticed and commented on endlessly.

SPiN takes a step forward into a more lush, melodic Classic Rock sound updated for today. The songwriting and performance on the h-Factor EP is top-notch, although the uncanny resemblance of Shine to Lonestar’s Amazed may end up being a huge distraction for the band. SPiN continues to surprise, and h-Factor is likely to expand their fan base significantly.

Rating: 4 Stars (Out of 5)

You can learn more about SPiN at or A release date for h-Factor has yet to be announced. Keep checking SPiN’s website for additional information.

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