"She just wanted somebody to talk to," Tom recalls. "Since we're in a band, it's easy for some kids to come to us and talk. She said one of our songs helped her out and gave hera sense of hope."
"That's the underlying theme of our CD – a sense of hope."
That sense is pervasive throughout the debut from the young South Carolina band. It's apparent from the unabashed exuberance of songs like "Better Place," "Forever," "Gotta Believe It," and "My Days Are Better." It's obvious in the raucous chords and cascading pop/rock riffs of "Anything But You," "Don't Run Away," and "What's Missing."
Third Day's Mac Powell, who executive produced A Better Place, has called Overflow "a young Third Day." The group consists of five members, all in their early to mid-20s: guitarist and primary lyricist Mark Breazeale, in many ways the band's spiritual leader; drummer Will Carter, keyboardist Matt Hayes; and vocalist Tom Pellerin, who also plays rhythm guitar. The four, can't recall a time when they didn't know each other.
Overflow, which takes its name from Psalm 23:5, sprang from their church youth group. "The band formed right before we started high school," recalls Tom. First, Tom and Will started playing together. Mark and Matt came in high school.
Overflow met NewSong's Scotty Wilbanks, who wound up producing the band's album, via email. Scotty played some of the group's early sessions for Mac Powell, who quickly became a fan as well.
"Their songs really drew me in," Mac says. "For guys as young as they are to have such great songs and a great sound at this time in their career, there's some incredible potential here."
"Mac and Scotty were both very influential in shaping the songs," says Tom, "They helped us find the right melodies and the right hooks. They showed us what needs to be in a song to make it great."
"Mac was never pushy about his ideas," says Will, "though he had every right to be. He was always coming up with great ideas, but he always wanted us to make our own decisions."
During more than three years of touring independently, Overflow has developed a strong affinity for youth groups, church camps and conferences. "Youth camps, we love doing that," Tom says. "We'll do activities with them – scavenger hunts, basketball, whatever the youth minister has going on." The entire band has fond memories of not only acting as the praise band for worship services, but leading Bible studies, even serving as counselors. "It's a great opportunity to witness to people," Tom says.
"We feel called to the Church, whether it be the actual church establishment or places like youth camps," Tom says. "We know all bands have different callings in ministry but for the five of us, being brought up in the church and knowing how important that was to our development, we want to offer encouragement and stay focused on the church."
Says Tom: "We feel like the choir still needs to be preached to."