Hanson, "Shout It Out"
Long before the first Jonas Brothers album hit the shelves, another sibling trio reigned supreme. Hanson brothers Isaac, Taylor and Zac may still be widely known for their playful 1997 pop hit, "MMMBop," but the trio's fifth studio album, "Shout It Out," shows that the group continues to expand its musical roots. A colorful set that pays tribute to the funk, soul and R&B musical influences that shapes its sound, "Shout It Out" has a sunnier vibe than the group's 2007 predecessor, "The Walk." Hanson partly achieved this by tapping horn arranger Jerry Hey (Michael Jackson; Earth, Wind & Fire) and Funk Brothers bassist Bob Babbit, who played on many Motown classics. But for all its sunshine, "Shout It Out" still breaks into emotional territory with piano ballads like "Use Me Up" (featuring Zac on lead vocals), while Taylor's windy tenor shines on "Carry You There." From the profoundly upbeat single "Thinking 'Bout Something'" to the heartfelt and introspective closer "Me Myself and I," "Shout It Out" is a fun listen that beams with genuine talent and creative artistry. --Connor McKnight