Brittany Hargest was one of five members of the Christian pop/dance music group Jump5, originally called Jump Start. Jump5 put out their self-titled debut in 2001. They toured with the likes of Aaron Carter and Zoegirl. The group eventually became a quartet and put out their final studio album in 2007. Brittany Hargest released her solo debut LOVE ALL THE WAY in 2011 on SoulStride Records. In her thanks she writes: “Lastly, to my God-the only reason I do what I do. You have given me so much more than I deserve. Thank You for loving me beyond anything I could ever imagine, and allowing me the opportunities to do what I love”.
Brittany, Aaron Rice, and Joe Pangallo wrote the opening peppy pop/dance song ‘Critical’. It has a spiritual urgency to it: “Red lights, sirens screaming, a level 10 emergency/It’s getting critical, out of control, too many doing 95 down a dead end road/It’s only natural in a fallen world/We gotta do something quick/It’s getting critical/We can’t sit back like it’s got no effect on us/Everything is on the line/It’s life and death/It is that serious/We see too much to act so blind”. The title track, ‘Love all the Way’, is a pop song of gratitude to God: “Your love is like a hard heart grenade/I love it how Your love can’t be tamed/You rush in like a soul hurricane/And time will never change the way Your love stays the same/Cause You love, yeah You love all the way/And even if I try, I’ll never find a kill-switch to Your love/No matter what I do/You’re never through, it never ends”.
Ironically, ‘Slow Motion’ is a very fast-paced song that encourages us to be a patient people: “If you’ve lost your hope and you’re crying, but you know inside that you’re trying/Sometimes slow motion is just part of growing/If you know your heart is broken, that’s the moment that it’s open/Even in slow motion, gotta keep going/Just keep, keep going in slow, slow motion”. Aaron Rice and Jason Walker wrote ‘Miracle’, while Alex Hawkins plays guitars on it. This adult contemporary track reminds us just how much God values us: “I’m on my knees today/Want to run, want to chase all the things that I love, but I don’t feel good enough/I’ll mess it up again/But You see a miracle/You see something beautiful/When You look at me You see what I could be/You call me one of Yours/You said that my heart was worth dying for me/Cause somewhere in me, You see a miracle”.
‘You Met Me’ is the only song that hits the four minute mark. This pretty ballad serves as a personal testimony: “You met me, right then and there/When and where I needed love but did not deserve to be loved/You met me in spite of my shame, You called my name/Who knows why?/Only love does/But right where I was, You met me”. Brittany, Aaron Rice, and Sam Mizell wrote ‘I Believe in You’. It is delivered in a cheesy, but catchy, pop music manner, in the vein of some of Carman’s material: “I believe in You (2X)/The one thing more than anything/I believe in You (3X)/It don’t really matter what the world can bring, cause I believe in You.../Shining like a star, even in the dark, You can find my heart/I believe in You/Every single day, the only One that stays/Others go away/I believe in You”.
Krystal Meyers is a co-writer on ‘He Can’. It points to God as our sure and able Source: “Want to do right, walk right, but I always slip/When you can’t, He can/When you fall, He stands/For the weak, for the hurt, for the broken man/When it’s way too much and you can’t, He can.../When you can’t find a way/When You can’t stand the pain/Don’t wait till you need the help/Because we can never save ourselves/We can’t save ourselves”. ‘Like a Fire’ is a strong pop/dance song about spiritual passion: “So God, I’m begging You/Let me burn for all that You are/And the fire got started and it’s burning so hot/And the flame keeps rising and it’s blazing my heart/It feels so right/I don’t want it to stop/It’s like, like a fire/And I can’t tame it/Cause it’s out of control/And I won’t contain it, gonna let it roll/So fan the flame and ignite my soul/It’s like, like a fire”.
‘Bring the Party’ is a fun pop song all around: “Throw up your hands/Get on your feet/Call all your friends/There’s a party in the streets, yeah/Just gotta dance if you’re feeling the beat, can’t wait/So we gonna bring the party on down.../Don’t understand why we’re waiting for heaven to celebrate”. Last up is ‘Put it all Together’ on which Brittany and Micah Wilshire sing background vocals. The song speaks these wonderful words of truth about God: “You take the pieces that nobody wants and You hold them, You mold them/You go for all the impossible people like me”.
LOVE ALL THE WAY is a fun, celebratory, upbeat pop/dance album that I recommend to youth and young adults who enjoy artists such as Britt Nicole, Superchick, and Natalie Grant. This album not only celebrates God’s love for us, but encourages us to love Him back with all we’ve got. Sure, this album isn’t a deep theological study, but I don’t think Christian pop is meant to be so, for the most part. It is more meant to entertain and uplift. Brittany’s vocals are great and she is a beautiful young lady. I’m rating LOVE ALL THE WAY 90%. For more info connect with Brittany on Facebook or visit: www.thehargestacademy.com.