For six long years, the Canadian quintet Finger Eleven must have regarded America as a stubborn virgin on prom night: No matter how hard the band worked it, the group just couldn't get lucky. Despite some well-crafted hard-rock albums, a whole lotta U.S. touring, even a hearty push from labelmates Creed (when that actually carried some weight), nothing could get the band on our airwaves for more than five minutes.
It's not for lack of talent or quality songs. Finger Eleven has a powerful, distinctive singer in Scott Anderson and a couple of guitarists whose crunchy riffs aren't pulled from the cliché bin. The "problem" has been that they weren't heavy or tortured enough to ride the nü-metal wave, they're not nearly as ClearChannel-slick as Canuck countrymen Nickelback and Default, and they've been unwilling to custom-fit their tunes to those prevailing trends.
But now, more than six months after the band's self-titled third album was released to commercial ambivalence, mainstream radio has suddenly latched onto "One Thing," Finger Eleven's plaintive, semi-acoustic ode to regret. Which means that the band has gotten to second base, but can it finally score? Probably not, but fuck it -- the group'll redirect all that frustrated energy into a damn good, no-frills rock show. Lucky you!
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