Monday, October 24, 2011
ON THE ALTAR OF LOVE
'Only the Beginning' sounds like it could be the theme song of a movie and presents life as a passionate pursuit: "This is only the beginning/Press ahead forget what's behind, forget what's behind/And the good work He is still perfecting/A new name, a new dream, a new life/And this is only the beginning/This is only the beginning." 'Rest' is a radio friendly invitation to find peace in the person of Christ: "Come to Me, you tired and heavy-laden/Come to Me with all your weariness/Here with Me is where you'll find your haven/And I will give you rest/Yes, I will give you rest." 'Let me Rediscover You' is powerful and marvels at God's greatness: "How can I say I know You/When what I know is still so small?/Let me cry 'Holy, Holy, Holy'/Let me awaken to Your majesty/And see a glimmer of Your glory/Let me abide in You/Let me rediscover You." 'For Life' is a poetic song that reflects on things to be thankful for: "For a pretty girl and for falling in love, oh love/For spring ice churning the driftwood shore/For birdsong air and windswept hair/For fiddle head strings and flower bows" and "For everything revealed to see/For what's kept in mystery, oh Lord/From the finer things to the shirt on my back/The less I have the less I lack."
'Living the Dream' has a circus type feel to it and highlights the importance of having a positive attitude: "As for me, I'm singing a new song/I'm not gonna dwell inside some alternate reality/I feel free-I'm making the best of it/Seeing with eyes that find the heart and soul of true beauty" and "Every day Love makes the promise/That we can be great if we want it/And we are living the dream/Highs and lows we'll take on together/Choosing joy whatever the weather." 'Seek' is a pop/rock song that offers this advice to humanity: "The call left unanswered/Will quickly take its toll/Seek while He may be found/Delight in Him in these times/This is the invitation/We've been waiting for/Seek while He may be found/Call on Him while He's near/Don't you fear, He won't hide." 'Glory by the Way of Shame' is a ballad about the power of forgiveness: "She cheated on him twice but for fear she never told/She finally confessed before her heart ran cold/With pain in his eyes, he walked out of the house and drove to town/Bought her a white wedding dress/Came home to her and danced." 'Holy' is a worshipful modern hymn: "You bore my shame/And in death carried my sin/Worthy Lamb, who gave Your life/Now, I can live again/Who was and is and is to come/The Father, Spirit, and the Son/Holy, holy, holy One/Holy, holy God."
'For the Heartbreak' has a happy sound to it and shows evidence of a mature faith: "Thank You for the heartbreak/Thank You for the pain/Thank You for the sadness/On the gloomy days of rain/Thank You that the hard times/Have a reason and rhyme/Thank You that the healing makes the beauty shine/Thank You for the heartbreak." 'Turn this Around' is a midtempo request for divine intervention in one's life: "I feel the toxins in my veins/And deeper routed through my heart/I don't want to stay the same/If there's healing for the broken/Save me from me/I'm calling on the Man of Sorrows, acquainted with grief/Can You make a change in me?" 'The Altar of Love' is a magnificent song of true surrender to God that features the fiddle: "Lay down your idols/Lay down your possessions/Lay down your shrines and/Your worldly obsessions/Love will ask of you more than treasure/When you're willing to trust/Blessing far outweighs the loss when you lay it all/You lay it all on the Altar of Love/In the holiest room/Where the curtain was torn/By the ultimate wound/Oh, the Altar of Love/Where the glory resides." 'Reveal the Kingdom' has a laid back feel to it and reveals a desire to live life with an eternal perspective: "Be Thou our strength, to carry through/The hope of grace and bear the truth/As we wait for You to.../Reveal the unseen Kingdom/The glory of the new Son/Where ever more His love imparts/The kingdom in our hearts/Reveal the Kingdom."
The black and white photography of the four bearded bandmates in period costuming on the album cover and in the booklet are a nice artistic touch. ON THE ALTAR OF LOVE is a very strong Christian rock record produced by Mark Heimermann. I'm rating it 90% and recommending it to fans of Sanctus Real, Kevin Max, and Mercy Me. For more info visit http://www.downhere.com/ or http://www.centricitymusic.com/.