Friday, August 13, 2010


     Given the creative title of, and the theatrical pictures in the booklet for Mercy Me's latest project on INO Records, THE GENEROUS MR. LOVEWELL (2010), one is led to believe that it is a concept album that tells a story.  This does not seem to me to be the case though.  That being said, some of the songs would fit nicely on a concept CD.
     There are several good songs on this project.  The title track is a pop song, with Beatles influence.  It wouldn't sound out of place on Randy Stonehill's WONDERAMA.  THE GENEROUS MR. LOVEWELL  is about the importance of doing small acts of kindness that benefit others: "He wakes up every day the same/Believing he's gonna make a change/Never wonders if but when/I guarantee he can find a way to reach out and make somebody's day."  'Crazy Enough' is slow and groovy and continues on the same theme: "Call me crazy/But what if we learned to love our brother for nothing in return."  One of my favourites is 'Beautiful', a song for when one is weary and downtrodden.  The message will ring true with everyone from the lonely college girl away from home to the overbooked soccer mom.
     Fans of Mercy Me's more worshipful tunes like 'I can only Imagine' and 'Word of God Speak' are not left out on this latest disc.  'All of Creation', already a Christian radio hit, and 'Only You Remain' will satisfy. 
     The problem with THE GENEROUS MR. LOVEWELL as an album is that there are three or four forgettable songs such as 'Move' and 'Won't You be My Love'.  The latter is similar thematically to Casting Crowns' 'If we are the Body', but is inferior to it.  While a new band might be forgiven this many average songs on an album, Mercy Me has been around the block enough times that expecatations should be higher.
     I'm giving THE GENEROUS MR. LOVEWELL a 70 percent!