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The final studio release of new music from Fifteen, Survivor is a fitting title for the group's swan song. Paradoxically, the band demonstrates their best-ever material on this 2000 Sub City Records offering. After almost a decade of songwriting and recording, the melodies, riffs, and performances had evolved to the point where singer/guitarist Jeff Ott couldn't ruin them with his frank, idealistic, and sour lyrics. The musician never developed any imagery, stories, or metaphors to add color to his progressive social, political, and familial commentary. It's hard to fault Ott's positions, but the color and depth of real poetry could have added so much power to his music. On Survivor, Ott takes control over his musical craft, rendering any lyrical weaknesses moot. Much more polished than the average Fifteen disc, this last effort is one of the Bay Area outfit's best.

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