Thursday, March 30, 2017


Kathleen Colleen ‘Kathy’ Troccoli was born on June 24, 1958 in Brooklyn, New York.  She became a Christian in 1978 and released her first album, STUBBORN LOVE, in 1982.  Fast forward to 2006 and she released THE STORY OF LOVE.  It was on Reunion Records and was produced by Kathy and Matt Baugher.  In the liner notes, Kathy writes: “On any given day I still marvel at the supernatural love of God.  It is constant, surprising, and full of grace.  It is all around us.  Somehow, it transcends our pain and increases our joy”.

The album opens with ‘Pick Yourself Up’, a jazz ballad that encourages perseverance: “Work like a soul inspired/Till the battle of the day is won/You may be sick and tired/But you be a man my son/Don’t you remember the famous men who had to fall to rise again?/They pick themselves up/Dust themselves off/And start all over again”.  Paul Nelson plays cello and Andrea Zonn, the fiddle, on ‘Dancing Me Through This Life’ which runs over six minutes long.  It’s an inspirational ballad on which Kathy speaks lovingly to the Father: “Flying over clouds in the night/Stars shine with Your color burning white/Who can pierce through the darkness of the sky like You do in this heart of mine?/Heaven plays the music of Your grace/Spinning round and round in Your embrace/Knowing that each day/Knowing that each night/You’ll keep dancing me through this life”.

Kathy, Tom Kimmel, and Jeff Franzel wrote ‘Talk to Jesus’, an adult contemporary ballad that offers hope to the hurting: “When your heart is undercover and you’re sinking like a stone/And your happy ever after left you all alone/Talk to Jesus (2X)/When this old world is more than you can bear/Talk to Jesus (2X)/When no one’s left to call He’s always there/Talk to Jesus”.  ‘I Cor 13’ is a light jazz number that is very biblical: “Love is patient, love is kind/And love knows no jealousy/It does not boast/Love is not proud/Does not act unbecomingly/Love seeks not its own/Forgives every wrong/Rejoices in what’s true/This is what love can do”.

‘Make My Life A Prayer to You’ is a Christian classic penned by Melody Green and originally appeared on her husband Keith’s 1978 album NO COMPROMISE.  Here, Kathy keeps the original melody and background vocals are provided by Lisa Bevill, Drew Cline, and Bonnie Keen.  It’s a great cover and includes these marvelous lyrics: “I wanna die and let You give Your life to me so I might live/And share the hope You gave to me, the love that set me free/I wanna tell the world out there that You’re not some fable or fairytale/That I’ve made up inside my head/You’re God the Son and You’ve risen from the dead”.  ‘Lifting my Hands’ is a quiet worship song: “I’m lifting my hands to You/I’m raising my voice for You/I’m lifting my hands to You/I’m raising my voice/You are holy/You are worthy/You are holy, Lord”.

Carl Herrgesell plays piano and David Cleveland plays guitar on the inspirational ballad ‘Psalm 34’ which includes this spoken word piece: “Those who look to Him are radiant and their faces are never covered with shame/This poor woman called and the Lord heard me and saved me out of all my troubles/The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him and He delivers them/Fear the Lord you His saints/For those who fear Him lack nothing”.  David M. Edwards wrote ‘Mercy’ which serves as a prayer: “I’m at the end/I’m on my knees/Weighted down by all my need/I should have come when You first called/And yet, Your love still broke my fall/Lord, have mercy/Lord, have mercy on me, on me/Wash and cleanse me/Make me holy like Thee, like Thee/Have mercy”.

Billy Sprague, Jeff Franzel, and Kathy wrote ‘Friend for Life’ on which Craig Nelson plays bass and John Hammond plays drums.  It’s obviously about true friendship here on earth: “You’ve got a friend for life/For all of time/There will always be a bridge between your heart and mine/Come what may we never say goodbye/You’ve got a friend for life/Remember anytime the world is on your shoulders/When the clouds appear or you’re feeling small/Let me be the one you call”.  Last up is ‘The Glory of Love’, a  playful jazz number that Benny Goodman took to #1 in the 1930’s.  It begins: “You’ve got to give a little, take a little/And let your poor heart break a little/That’s the story of, that’s the glory of love/You’ve got to laugh a little, cry a little, until the clouds roll by a little/That’s the story of, that’s the glory of love”.

THE STORY OF LOVE is made up mainly of inspirational and adult contemporary ballads, but what sets it apart when it comes to CCM albums is the inclusion of three light jazz numbers.  One cannot say enough good things about Kathy’s vocals.  This album has a warm, laid back feel to it.  There are songs about and encouraging intimacy with God.  As well, there are some praise and worship songs, and ones about displaying love and friendship on this planet.  I recommend this easy listening album to the forty and over crowd and rate it 95%.  For more info visit: or check her out on Facebook.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017


Kira Isabella was born on September 18, 1993 in Ottawa, Ontario.  Her musical influences include Shania Twain, Sheryl Crow, and Taylor Swift.  Her debut single, `Love Me Like That’, made it on to the Canadian Hot 100 in 2011.  Her debut album of the same name came out on October 2, 2012 (Sony Music Canada).  The album was produced by Mark Liggett and Jerry Lane.  In the liner notes Kira writes: “I would like to start by thanking God.  You have blessed me with a love of music so deep it is my air.  You have also blessed me with the most incredible opportunities and I will never take them for granted”.

‘Blame it on Your Truck’ is a fun, upbeat country song: “Everybody thinks we’re up to no good/But we’re just sittin’ on the tailgate/The moon shinin’ on the lake/And listening to that country music playing.../My momma will be freakin’ out/When I don’t make it home before 2 AM/We’ll say it wouldn’t start/Or maybe we got stuck/If I know my daddy, he’ll be waiting up/Let’s blame it on your truck”.  The title track is one of six songs co-written by Kira and Jason Phelps.  It’s a nice ballad about puppy love: “You give me real soft kisses, walk me to the door/Whisper how amazing this is and tell me I am beautiful/Hold me just a little tighter when they’re playin’ our song/Make me smile when my night has gone wrong/And give me your hand to hold/I’m fallin’ so fast/When you love me like that”.  The album’s third single was ‘A Little More Work’.  It peaked at #7 on the Canada Country airplay chart.  It’s a catchy, playful country song: “I’ll admit when you take off your shirt and get down in the dirt/It’s hard for me to look away/But I wanna know there’s more than that/Underneath that baseball cap.../You still got a little more work to do/Before you sweep me off my boots/Sorry, I don’t fall that easy!”

‘A Real Good Radio’ was the second single.  It’s about a love for music: “I remember the first time/Headin’ out to the bonfire/Turned it up as loud as it would go/Or the time that Amy and I drove toward that big Alberta sky/Can’t believe the speakers didn’t blow/Singin’ every single song at the top of our lungs/It burns a little oil grindin’ into gear/Super glue holding up the rear view mirror/But whoa!/It has a real good radio”.  Blair Daly, Hillary Lindsey, and Troy Verges wrote ‘Songs About You’, a country ballad about heartache: “Another sleepless night, with the radio/Alone here in the dark just trying to let you go/But every song I hear just makes it worse/It’s time to shut it down/Turn off all this hurt/I’m done sitting here wasting my breath/I’m done beating this thing to death/It don’t change, nothing/It just keeps you on my mind”.

On ‘I Can Love You Better Than That’ Kira offers advice to a guy she likes: “I know she’s gonna steal your heart and tear it up in two/Give it back when she’s had enough and say/’This belongs to you’/Don’t give her that chance/Don’t you fall fast/Why don’t you run while you still can?/I know you don’t see what I can see/Everything that we could be”.  ‘Little White Church’ is a tender, sentimental song: “Meet me at the little white church/When the bells start ringing on Sunday morning/I’ll be in the back row with a wildflower in my hair/And if we hit it off we can talk about you taking me out next Friday night/But first, meet me at the little white church/I spent the whole week wondering what to wear/I needed more than my Sunday best/So I bought me a brand new dress”.

‘Gonna Be a Hot One’ is an upbeat country song of infatuation: “When the middle of the night’s hard to sleep through/I got a T-shirt that smells just like you/My heart races when you’re with me/I start wishing you would kiss me/I see your picture every time I blink/And I wanna wanna be that girl you’re obsessed with”.  ‘Dangerously Obvious’ is a song of reckless abandon: “Let’s run away and give ourselves to the night/Don’t wanna slow down till we see sunlight/I know it’s wrong but it feels so right/And I don’t even care that I don’t know your name/But I’m pulled like a magnet, a moth to a flame/Say the word and I’m there cause baby with us/It’s so obviously dangerous and dangerously obvious”.

Kira co-wrote ‘Her Heart’ with Walt Aldridge.  It’s a quiet song offering these thoughts: “Her heart is wrapped in mystery/Her heart is wrapped in gold/You may know that girl down to the deepest part/But you can’t really know her heart/She doesn’t know how to show/Just how much she wants you to know her heart”.  Last up is ‘My Diary’.  It reveals Kira’s desires: “On page three you put a promise on my hand/Turn to page four, make my brother your best man/Been waiting on you to start whispering in my ear/’I love you baby’/Whoa...while you dance with me/Real slow/If you could only read what’s in my diary”.

LOVE ME LIKE THAT is a fantastic debut album.  One must take into account Kira was not even twenty years old when this album came out, so one should not expect the lyrical maturity of say a Johnny Cash or Dolly Parton.  There are five fast paced country songs and six country ballads presented here.  Seven of the songs are about young love and infatuation, while two are about heartache and longing for a guy.  There’s even a song about a love for music.  Kira’s vocals are easy to listen to and she is very attractive.  I’m rating this one 90%.  Fans of Cyndi Thomson and early era Taylor Swift should buy this one.  For more info visit: or check her out on Facebook.

Monday, March 27, 2017


Kerrie Roberts’ origins can be traced to Miami, Florida.  She was born on January 1, 1985.  Her folks were a pastor and a church choir director.  She started writing songs while in high school and graduated from the University of Miami with a degree in studio music and jazz vocal.  In September 2005 she put out the single ‘It is Well With Me’.  Fast forward to 2010 and she released her self-titled full length studio album on Reunion Records.  It peaked at #27 on Billboard’s Christian Albums chart.  Producers used on the album were Rob Graves, Dan Muckala, Chuck Butler, and Brown Bannister, while Jason McArthur executive produced it.
First up is the record’s highest charting single ‘No Matter What’.  It was written by Kerrie, Chuck Butler, and Tony Wood and hit #9 on Billboard’s Hot Christian Songs chart.  This pop song puts full confidence in God: “When I’m stuck in this nothingness by myself/I’m just sitting in silence/There’s no way I can make it without Your help/I won’t even try it/I know You have Your reasons for everything/So I will keep believing/Whatever I might be feeling/God, You are my hope and You’ll be my strength”.  ‘Take You Away’ finds Jesus speaking words of encouragement: “Oh, I’m coming to take you away/To the place where the pain won’t find you/I’m coming to take you away/So leave the weight of the world behind you/Oh, and you know/Nothing’s too far, nothing’s too hard/I’ll always be there/I’m coming to take you away”.
Kerrie, Rob Graves, Stephanie Lewis, and Bernie Herms wrote ‘Beautiful to Me’.  It’s a pretty worship song with strings arranged by David Davidson.  It reflects on Christ at Calvary: “I don’t deserve Your suffering/I should be the one who’s bleeding/But Your broken body gives this broken spirit what it’s needing/You reach through time with Your sacrifice/Your wounded hands holding this fragile life/It’s beautiful to me/Your holy mystery/I’m standing here in awe/Of how You make everything so beautiful to me”.  ‘This Love Doesn’t Run’ offers testimony: “You hold me now/Where I know that I belong in hands that heal me/And I know I’m finally home in arms that won’t let go”.
‘Keep Breathing’ is the only song solely written by Kerrie.  It’s a strong adult contemporary ballad of encouragement: “When every moment is almost more than you can take/You got to know some tomorrow/Will bring you a breakthrough.../Keep breathing, you’ll make it/Don’t give in, you’re not done yet/Sometimes all that you can do is keep breathing and believing”.  ‘Unstoppable’ is an R & B ballad of optimism: “Anything is possible, possible/You gotta believe and see that love is unstoppable/You can never go too far, never be too gone that you can’t turn it around/You will see that love is unstoppable/Keep going (2X)/Keep pushing (2X)”.
Kerrie, Jason McArthur, Cindy Morgan, and Jeremy Bose wrote one of the album’s other singles, ‘Outcast’.  Though it is under three minutes in length it packs quite a pop/dance musical punch.  It’s about going against the flow: “I’m not living for them, I live for something better/I’m not good enough/I’m not what they want/But let me tell you what/I know who I am/So just throw me out for not fitting in/I will stand my ground and be an outcast”.  ‘Maybe I’m Afraid’ includes these vulnerable thoughts: “Maybe I’m afraid to let it go and just accept the love You’ve spoken/Maybe I’m afraid of the way that I know You’ll fix everything that’s broken/Or maybe I’m afraid cause I don’t know who You are”.
‘Love Comes Down’ is an adult contemporary ballad that uses an eight person choir and reminds us that God does indeed care for us: “If you could only know Who loves you/Who feels your every pain/If you could only hear Him speaking/With a voice as sweet as rain/You’d know that He counts your tears/He holds them near, not one will go to waste/And the sorrow that weighs you down/Will float away”.  Ending things is a gorgeous worship anthem, ‘Savior to Me (Sing Glory)’.  Here’s the chorus: “Glory to the God above/Full of truth and endless love/He who is and was and always will be/I surrender to the One/Gentle and most powerful/Of all the things You are/You’ve chosen to be/A Savior to me!”
KERRIE ROBERTS is mainly a soft adult contemporary album with influences of R & B.  There are however, a couple of upbeat pop numbers and a couple of modern worship ones.  These songs encourage us to realize that God truly does have care and concern for us, whatever we are going through.  Also conveyed here, is gratitude for what God has done for us.  He redeemed us at Calvary and He is our Healer working all things for good in our lives.  Kerrie has a lovely, powerful voice and she is a beautiful lady.  I’m rating her debut album 93%.  Fans of Nichole Nordeman and Francesca Battistelli should have this CD in their collection.  For more info visit:

Saturday, March 25, 2017


Delirious? began as The Cutting Edge Band in Littlehampton, West Sussex in England in the early 1990’s.  They released their first studio album KING OF FOOLS under their new name in 1997.  It reached #13 on the UK Album chart.  Group members were: Martin Smith (vocals, guitars), Stewart Smith (drums, percussion, background vocals), Jon Thatcher (bass, background vocals), Tim Jupp (keys, Hammond organ, background vocals), and Stuart Garrard (guitars, background vocals).  Here I will be reviewing the 1998 US re-release of the album (Furious?/Sparrow).

‘Sanctify’ is a rock ballad that makes use of strings and cries out to God: “Sanctify, I want to be set apart/Right to the very heart/Prophesy to the four winds and breathe life to this very place/How long will it take?/How long will I have to wait?/Cause all I want is all You have/Come to me, rescue me/Fall on me with Your love”.  ‘Deeper’ is one of seven co-writes by Martin Smith and Stuart Garrard.  It was the album’s second single and peaked at #22 on the UK Singles chart.  It’s about pursuing a deeper relationship with God: “I want to go deeper but I don’t know how to swim/I want to fly higher but these arms won’t take me there.../Hold me in Your arms just like any father would.../And the wonder of it all/Is that I’m living just to fall more in love with You”.  It’s quite a catchy pop song!  ‘Revival Town’ is a great rock anthem that makes use of The Tehilla! Choir and includes these exciting words: “Well, I’ve got a story to tell/About the King above all kings/He spoke for peace, hope, love, and justice/Things that we all need today/You let a broken generation become a dancing generation/This is revival generation.../Hallelujah, You’ve turned our sorrow into laughter!”

‘All the Way’ is a beautiful adult contemporary ballad of personal testimony: “With You I’m washed as white as the snow/And all crimson stain becomes just a shadow/You know I would be blind without You/So light up my way to find my way home again/Today (3X)/We’re going all the way/Tears sometimes fall upon my face/And join the oil of gladness/How can it be I’ve found this love/A love that let me fly”.  In August 1995 Martin Smith, his wife, and Jon Thatcher were in a major car accident.  ‘August 30th’ was inspired by it: “Thank You for the chance to live again/I will run only for You/Clouds had gathered all around my head but these hands they lifted me/And I’ll tell of this love that saved me”.  Jussy McLean sings background vocals.

‘Promise’ is one of six songs solely written by Martin Smith.  This heavy rock song is full of questions: “Do I wipe the tear or do I spit in your face?/Do I point the finger or give the hand of grace?/Oh, why does it come to this?”  ‘King or Cripple’ focuses on Christ: “I love to hold the hand of one who healed the blind/And saw the leper run into the arms of love/And king or cripple, they were the same to You/You took a broken man and You treat him like a king/Keep me, won’t You keep me?”  This song ends up rocking hard too.

‘Hands of Kindness’ is a moving ballad addressed to Christ: “Oh Your hands of mercy were scarred for me/And Your body was broken so that I go free/How I love You/All I am is You/King of love/I bow”.  ‘Louder than the Radio’ is an energetic Christian pop song.  I like these lyrics: “Everybody round the world come on/We need some love to fall on us/Everybody round the world come on/We need some grace to fall on us.../Can you hear the sound that’s rising?/From all the corners of the earth/And young and old we’ll stand together/Can you hear the praise?/It’s louder than the radio”.

‘White Ribbon Day’ runs close to seven minutes long and was the first single from the album.  This modern worship anthem speaks of Calvary and makes requests of God: “How can it be that You could love?/When blood ran down that wooden cross/Your Father gave His only Son/You came for peace/You came to die for white ribbon day/And we pray for peace to flood our hearts again/Only God can save our nation now/And we long for joy to fill our streets again/Only God can save our nation now”.  ‘King of Fools’ is a somewhat weak title track: “Walking with you/Blindly follow out upon the/Water runs down/You’ve become the very best of friends/I’ll live for you and try to be the king of fools/I’ll long for you and walk before the King of all”.

‘History Maker’ became a signature song for the band.  It’s a modern worship gem of great faith and action: “Is it true today that when people pray/We’ll see dead men rise and the blind set free?/Yes, it’s true and I believe it/I’m living for You/I’m gonna be a history maker in this land/I’m gonna be a speaker of truth to all mankind/I’m gonna stand/I’m gonna run/Into Your arms/Into your arms again”.  Last up is ‘What A Friend I’ve Found’, a tender ballad: “What a friend I’ve found/Closer than a brother/I have felt Your touch/More intimate than lovers/Jesus, Jesus/Jesus, friend forever”.

KING OF FOOLS is a lengthy album, coming in at 64 minutes and 2 seconds.  On this project it sounds like Delirious? couldn’t make up their mind whether they wanted to make a rock record or a modern praise and worship one.  At times it can give the listener whiplash!  Don’t get me wrong, there are good songs from each genre here.  Five of the tracks are fast, while eight are on the slow side.  The main lyrical theme is a desire to be closer to God and to be more like Him.  The band truly wants to live for Him.  They want to experience revival and share their faith with the world.  It is made clear here that God sent His Son Jesus to us to redeem us.  There are some goofy photos in the CD booklet that have fun with the album’s title.  I’m rating KING OF FOOLS 87%.  For more info visit: or check out the band on Facebook.




Friday, March 24, 2017


MercyMe released their major label debut ALMOST THERE in 2001.  It included the mega-hit ‘I Can Only Imagine’, about heaven.  Over the years, they became known for other songs too such as ‘Word of God Speak’, ‘Here With Me’, and ‘So Long Self’.  In 2007 they released their fifth studio album, ALL THAT IS WITHIN ME (INO Records).  It was produced by the legendary Brown Bannister and debuted at #1 on the Billboard Christian Albums chart and at #15 on the Billboard 200.  Group members on this album are: Bart Millard (vocals), Barry Graul (guitar), Nathan Cochran (bass), Jim Bryson (piano and keys), Robbie Shaffer (drums), and Mike Scheuchzer (guitar).  In the liner notes Bart shares: “The God I worship does not stand there with His nose in the air telling us we may as well give up because we have already messed up.  On the contrary.  He is cheering us on!  Reminding us that He is greater than our flaws!”

A great rock song called ‘Goodbye Ordinary’ starts things off.  It encourages us to reach our full potential: “We were never meant to compromise/Settle for mediocrity/This life was never made to be a waste of time/Well, all that is within me/Says no more just existing/Live like there’s no tomorrow/Love extravagantly/Lead a life to be followed/Goodbye ordinary (2X)”.  ‘Time Has Come’ is an upbeat rock song reminding us of our true purpose: “From the moment of our first breath to the second we bid this world goodbye/And everything that is in between was made to magnify/The One who holds all things in place/The Ruler over time and space/Time has come to raise our hearts as one/And glorify the God of everything”.

‘I Know’ is an adult contemporary number that speaks of God’s rescuing power: “I’m certainly not claiming to know everything, but what I do will save your life/I know, I know that God is able/I know, I know that He still reigns/I know, I know that love has found a way/No matter what it is you’re going through/Even if you think you’re far beyond where hope can see/I know there is a hand that’s reaching out for you/Because He did the same for me”.  ‘God With Us’ was the album’s first single, spending eight weeks at #1 on the Billboard Christian Songs chart.  It’s a wonderful modern praise and worship song: “All that is within me cries/For You alone be glorified/Emmanuel/God with us/My heart sings a brand new song/The debt is paid, these chains are gone/Emmanuel/God with us/Such a tiny offering compared to Calvary/Nevertheless we lay it at Your feet”.

‘Sanctified’ is a song of testimony: “No greater love has ever been known than He who came to find the lost/No greater sacrifice has been shown than He who laid upon the cross/Let all creation sing/For He has come and He’s changed everything/Sanctified/I have been set free/Grace divine has swept me off my feet”.  ‘You Reign’ was the album’s second single.  It spent four weeks at the top of the Billboard Christian Adult Contemporary Songs chart and is a co-write between the group and Steven Curtis Chapman.  It begins with these words: “Even before there was a drop in the ocean/Even before there was a star in the sky/Even before the world was put in motion/You were on Your throne (2X)/You reign/Glory in the highest/You reign/Let creation testify”.

‘Grace Tells Another Story’ is a rock ballad that shares good news: “We’ve been told that the heart is just too far gone to save/But grace tells us another story/Where glory sends hopelessness away/Oh grace tells us another story/And though we may not understand/Why You’d give us another chance/We praise You who lets us start again!”  ‘Alright’ is a pop song of encouragement: “We’re gonna have those days when it all comes crashing in/Wondering if the sun will ever shine/Before you go and convince yourself you cannot make it/Hold your head up, breathe in deep, remember/Ooh ooh, you know it’s gonna be alright (2X)”.  Mike Haynes plays trumpet.

‘My Heart Will Fly’ offers optimism: “It won’t be long until we all go home/With all things revealed and on that day we’ll finally know/Oh, as we are fully known/And my heart will fly/When I finally see You face to face/And my tears will fly away, away”.  Last up is the album’s third single, ‘Finally Home’.  It’s a great easy listening track about heaven: “I’m gonna wrap my arms around my daddy’s neck/And tell him that I’ve missed him/And tell him all about the man that I became/And hope that it pleased him/There’s so much I want to say/There’s so much I want you to know/When I finally make it home (2X)”.

ALL THAT IS WITHIN ME is a real treat!  It is made up of four rock songs, three adult contemporary, two pop, and one easy listening track.  You will most definitely not become bored listening to this record!  The London Sessions Orchestra is a nice touch.  The main lyrical theme is praising and worshipping God for who He is and what He has done.  It’s clear that the band puts their trust in God.  There are also two songs anticipating our eternal home, heaven.  Fans of Steven Curtis Chapman and Casting Crowns should acquire this album which I’m rating 100%.  For more info visit:

Wednesday, March 22, 2017


Jars of Clay released their self-titled label debut back in 1995.  It included ‘Flood’ which became a mainstream hit.  Fast forward to 2006 and they released their seventh full-length studio album GOOD MONSTERS (Essential Records).  Band members were: Dan Haseltine, Charlie Lowell, Stephen Mason, and Matt Odmark.  The album was produced by the band and executive produced by Terry Hemmings.  CCM Magazine named it ‘Album of the Year’.  It was also Christianity Today’s top album of 2006 and won a Dove Award for ‘Best Rock/Contemporary Album of the Year’.  As well, it peaked at #58 on the Billboard 200.

Starting things off is ‘Work’, the album’s second single.  It’s one of eight songs written by the four band members.  This pounding rocker displays great vulnerability: “Just in case/I will leave my things packed so I can run away/I cannot trust these voices/I don’t have a line of prospects that can give some kind of peace/There is nothing left to cling to that can bring me sweet release/I have no fear of drowning/It’s the breathing that’s taking all this work/Do you know what I mean when I say/’I don’t want to be alone’”.  Next up is ‘Dead Man (Carry Me)’ the album’s first single.  It’s a catchy pop/rock song about spiritual renewal: “Carry me/I’m just a dead man lying on the carpet/Can’t find a heart beat/Make me breathe/I want to be a new man, tired of the old one, out with the old plan/Can You find a beat inside of me?/Any pulse?”

‘All My Tears’ is a Julie Anne Miller composition.  It’s a rootsy rock song anticipating heaven: “When I go don’t cry for me, in my Father’s arms I’ll be/The wounds this world left on my soul will all be healed and I’ll be whole/Sun and moon will be replaced with the light of Jesus’ face/And I will not be ashamed for my Savior knows my name/It don’t matter where you bury me/I’ll be home and I’ll be free”.  Kate York contributes vocals on ‘Even Angels Cry’.  It’s a ballad of encouragement: “Cold fingers find the curve below your tired eyes/No comfort in familiar places not this time/You hold it deep inside/Oh sister if you wake up in the night, walls have fallen letting in the light/No need to worry/Baby, even angels cry”.

‘There is A River’ is one of three songs penned by the band and Ron Aniello.  It’s an adult contemporary song that urges us to lay our burdens down: “On all of those nights spent alone in the darkness of your mind/Give it up, let it go/These are things you were never meant to shoulder/There is a river that washes you clean/There is a tree that marks the places you’ve been/Blood that was spilled, although not your own/For all of your tears/Love will atone”.  The title track is a rock song that makes you think: “Not all monsters are bad, but the ones who are good never do what they could, never do what they could.../We are bored of all the things we know/Do you know what you are?/Cause we are, we are so in love with ourselves/And we are forms of all the things we love”.

‘Oh My God’ includes these intriguing lyrics: “Babies underneath their beds, in hospitals that cannot treat them/All the wounds that money causes, all the comforts of cathedrals/All the cities of thirsty children/This is our inheritance/All the rage of watching mothers, this is our greatest offense/Oh my God (3X)”.  Ned Henry plays violin on the ballad ‘Surprise’.  It’s one of reflection: “We are so beautiful when we sleep/Hearts of gold and eyes so deep, deep, deep/But love won’t cure the chaos and hope won’t hide the loss/And peace is not the heroine that shouts above the cause/And love is wild for reasons/And hope though short in sight might be the only thing that wakes you by surprise”.

Background vocalists on ‘Take Me Higher’ are Rosemary Butler, Ashley Cleveland, and Kim Fleming.  This rock song is one of personal testimony: “It took a lot to turn away/Blood and water from one side/It took Your eyes to stare me down/It took the truth to set me free, to set me free/Lookin’ for a place to hide/Waitin’ for the wind to rise/My soul is waiting/Lookin’ for a place to hide/I need a little peace tonight/Take me higher than the sun/Yeah, You are the only one”.  Leigh Nash of Sixpence None the Richer fame sings on ‘Mirrors and Smoke’ another rock song.  It’s about a male-female relationship: “You will always want me and I’ll always want to leave/Even though I cut your wounds, you still deny they’re real/Rivers flow into the oceans and oceans never fill/I want to lay my life down, but I know you never will/Love’s a strange condition with all the doubts it can invoke/Your love keep me wishing and my heart it keeps me broke”.

‘Light Gives Heat’ makes use of the African Children’s Choir and soloist Elizabeth Panga.  These words are addressed to Africans: “Will you teach us how to love?/To see the things you see/Walk the road you walk and feel the pain that you feel/At your feet I kneel/I want to see you shine/See your light not mine/Cause light gives heat/Your light gives heat”.  John Catchings plays cello on the ballad ‘Water Under the Bridge’ which is addressed to one’s partner: “I do not love you the way I did when we met/There are secrets and arguments I haven’t finished yet/But it’s only that grace has outlived our regrets we’re still here/Maybe we can stay till the last drop of water flows under the bridge/We can stay till the last drop of water flows under the bridge”.

GOOD MONSTERS is comprised of seven faster paced songs and five slower paced ones.  While the main musical genre is rock, there is plenty of adult contemporary influence.  There are songs about spiritual renewal and rebirth, heaven, helping the poor and hurting, and about male-female relationships.  The lyrics are definitely more obscure than say Petra’s or Newboys’, but different bands have different callings and giftings.  I’m rating this one 87% and recommending it to adult fans of Switchfoot and Needtobreathe.  For more info visit:

Monday, March 20, 2017


Kutless began as a campus worship band called Call Box in Portland, Oregon in 1999.  In the Fall of 2001 they took on their new name and in 2002 they released their self-titled debut full length album.  In 2005 they released their third studio album, STRONG TOWER (BEC Recordings).  On the album produced by Aaron Sprinkle and executive produced by Brandon Ebel, Kutless is: Jon Micah Sumrall, Ryan Shrout, James Mead, Kyle Mitchell, and Kyle Zeigler.  It peaked at #4 on the Billboard Christian Albums chart and #87 on the Billboard 200.  Here, I am reviewing the standard edition of STRONG TOWER.

Chris Tomlin’s ‘We Fall Down’ is first up.  Here, it is a rock anthem exalting Christ: “We fall down/We lay our crowns at the feet of Jesus.../We cry holy, holy, holy/Is the Lamb”.  ‘Finding Who We Are’ is about discovering ourselves in God: “In You we’re living/In You we’re moving/In You we’re finding who we are.../We lift our hands and seek Your presence/And find ourselves in who You are”.  Dave Browning wrote ‘Take Me In’ which was also on Petra’s first praise project.  It serves as a prayer: “Take me past the outer courts/In to the holy place/Past the brazen altar/Lord, I want to see Your face.../Take me in to the holy of holies/Take me in by the blood of the Lamb/Take me in to the holy of holies/Take the coal, touch my lips, here I am”.

Lead singer Jon Micah Sumrall wrote ‘Ready for You’, an adult contemporary ballad of surrender: “I am ready for You/Take my heart and make me new now/I am ready for You to come and fill my soul/Cleanse all of my mind that is not of You/Break me, teaching me how to find rest in Your hands”.  ‘Draw Me Close’ is given the rock treatment.  If we’d all pray these words we’d be better off: “You’re all I want/Help me know You are near/You are my desire/No one else will do/No one else can take Your place/To feel the warmth of Your embrace”.

‘All Who Are Thirsty’ is a warm song of invitation: “All who are thirsty, all who are weak/Just come to the fountain/Dip your heart in the stream of life/Let the pain and the sorrow/Be washed away in the waves of His mercy”.  Matt Redman’s ‘Better is One Day’ is next.  Here, it’s a rock ballad about intimacy with Father God: “My soul doth long and even faints for You/For here my heart is satisfied/Within Your presence/I sing beneath the shadow of Your wings/Better is one day in Your courts/Better is one day in Your house/Better is one day in Your courts/Than thousands elsewhere”.

‘All of the Words’ is an original adult contemporary ballad that includes these words of gratitude: “By Your grace You let me come and talk to You/It’s not that I’m worthy/I thank You Jesus/For the love that You have shown”.  Mark Byrd, Mark Lee, Jon Micah Sumrall, and Aaron Sprinkle wrote the album’s title track, ‘Strong Tower’, a great rock anthem about finding refuge in our God: “I go running to Your mountain/Where Your mercy sets me free/You are my strong tower/Shelter over me/Beautiful and mighty/Everlasting King/You are my strong tower/Fortress when I’m weak/Your Name is true and holy/And Your face is all I seek”.

‘Jesus Lord of Heaven’ converses with Christ: “Jesus Lord of Heaven/I did not deserve the grace that You have given/And the promise of Your Word/Lord I stand in wonder of the sacrifice You made/With mercy beyond measure/My debt You freely paid”.  Brian Doerksen’s ‘I Lift My Eyes Up’ is given a meaty rock spin and comes from the Psalms: “I lift my eyes up unto the mountains/Where does my help come from?/My help comes from You/Maker of heaven/Creator of the Earth”.

‘Word of God Speak’ was penned by Bart Millard and Pete Kipley and was originally on MercyMe’s 2002 release SPOKEN FOR.  It’s a song of petition: “Word of God speak/Would You pour down like rain?/Washing my eyes to see Your majesty/To be still and know that You’re in this place/Please let me stay and rest in Your holiness/The Word of God speak”.  Last up is Craig Musseau’s ‘Arms of Love’.  It is, well, a love song to God: “I sing a simple song of love to my Savior, to my Jesus.../Cause there’s no place I’d rather be/Than in Your arms of love/In Your arms of love/Holding me still, holding me near/In Your arms of love”.

STRONG TOWER is an album of mostly mid-tempo rock and adult contemporary numbers.  While it is a pleasant album to listen to, I wouldn’t have minded the inclusion of two or three faster paced songs and more electric guitar solos.  The majority of the songs are well done covers, but the originals fit in nicely.  The main theme on the album is desiring intimacy with God and longing to be shaped by Him.  Several of the songs exalt and worship Christ and God the Father.  The musicianship and vocals are great, even where the lyrics lack creativity.  I’m rating STRONG TOWER 90% and recommending it to fans of Jeremy Camp and J.P. Smits.  For more info visit or check out the band on facebook.

Saturday, March 18, 2017


Evelyn ‘Evie’ Tornquist was born on March 29, 1956 in Rahway, New Jersey to Norwegian immigrants.  She released her debut album A SONG FOR EVERYONE in 1970.  In 1977 and 1978 she won the Dove Award for ‘Female Vocalist of the Year’.  In 2005 she was inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame.  Three of her albums were Grammy nominated, including 1977’s COME ON, RING THOSE BELLS.  What I will be reviewing here is a best of project entitled OUR ReCOLLECTIONS (1996, Word).  Evie shares: “Really, life begins with Jesus and never ends thereafter.  It reaches its full meaning when we make Him center and Lord of our lives.  I did that at a very early age and have been privileged to walk with Him for all of these years”.

First up is the adult contemporary ballad ‘Special Delivery’ about the uniqueness of Jesus: “Never was anyone like Him/Never will one be the same/A tiny babe, an infant King, Savior/We worship and honor the power of His Name/Oh, He came special delivery/Wrapped up in love/Bound by a promise/Sealed by a dove”.  ‘Live for Jesus’ was penned by Nancy Henigbaum, better known as Honeytree.  It talks about the importance of legacy: “Oh, I want to be remembered/As a girl who sang her songs for Jesus Christ/Who was willing to lay down her life/And do His will no matter what the price”.

Ron and Carol Harris wrote ‘Mirror’, an easy listening tune addressed to seekers: “You’re searching for Jesus/Looking to find hope for tomorrow and some peace of mind/When you can find Him in the Bible and many churches that I know/But ‘til you find Him in the mirror/You’ve got a long way to go”.  ‘Step Into the Sunshine’ is a song of invitation: “Children, step into the sunshine, get out of the shade/This is the one time that you’ve got it made/And you can feel yourself smilin’ way down to your shoes/Step into the sunshine, find the great Good News!”

‘Give Them All to Jesus’ points to Him as Healer: “Wrap up the shattered dreams of your life/And at the feet of Jesus lay them down/Give them all (2X)/Give them all to Jesus/Shattered dreams, wounded hearts, broken toys/Give them all (2X)/Give them all to Jesus/And He will turn your sorrow into joy”.  Andrew Culverwell wrote the classic country and western song ‘Born Again’ that uses tambourine.  It’s a testimonial: “One day I prayed ‘Jesus take my sin away’/And that’s when I was born again/Born again, there’s really been a change in me/Born again, just like Jesus said/Born again and all because of Calvary/I’m glad, so glad that I’ve been born again”.

Kurt Kaiser wrote the campfire classic ‘Pass it On’.  It begins with these familiar words: “It only takes a spark to get a fire going/And soon all those around can warm up in its glowing/That’s how it is with God’s love once you’ve experienced it/You spread the love to everyone/You want to pass it on”.  Evie’s husband Pelle Karlsson wrote ‘Never the Same Again’, a country ballad of testimony: “I remember how He waited/How He called me by night/Yet I chose to wander my own way/And nothin’ worked out right/Till the day I finally surrendered/Jesus healed my life/I won’t be the same, no never the same again”.

‘Clean Before my Lord’ speaks of how Jesus transforms us: “Clean before my Lord I stand/And in me not one blemish does He see/When I placed all my burdens on Him/He washed them all from me”.  John Daniels wrote the disco track ‘Broken Up People’ which offers a commentary on society: “Broken up people and broken down lives/Broken up homes, broken husbands and wives/All the world around us is falling apart/Broken up people with broken up hearts/There are so many things that money can buy/But it won’t buy peace of mind no matter how hard you try/Broken up people need brand new lives”.

Ray Hildebrand wrote the inspirational classic ‘Say ‘I Do’’.  It anticipates heaven: “Anybody here want to live forever?/Say ‘I do’/Anybody here want to walk on golden streets?/Say ‘I do’/Anybody here sick and tired of living like you do?/Anybody here want a home with love forever?/Say ‘I do’”.  ‘Praise You Just the Same’ includes these prayerful words: “Oh, but thank You for the trial if it will bring me close to You/Help me Lord to smile when things don’t go the way I’d want them to/If I suffer pain, help me that I don’t complain/But thank You Lord and praise You just the same/I want to thank You, Lord, and praise You just the same”.

‘Unfailing Love’ sounds like an epic ballad from a Broadway musical.  It speaks of Christ’s goodness: “Unfailing love flows from His heart and heals my soul/In spite of who I am He loves and makes me whole/I almost can’t believe it’s true/Unfailing love and yet I know/He gave His life to give to me/Unfailing love”.  Sharalee Lucas and Ron Harris wrote ‘Praise the Lord, He Never Changes’, a praise and worship ballad: “Praise the Lord/He never changes/I come to Him/He’s always there/He comforts me on every level, takes the burden that I bear/Praise the Lord/He never changes/He’s never any other way/And He’ll be the same tomorrow as He was and is today”.

‘The Blood Will Never Lose Its Power’ is one of two gospel numbers on this CD penned by Andrae Crouch.  This one’s about the atonement: “The blood that Jesus shed for me way back on Calvary/That blood that gives me strength from day to day/It’ll never lose its power/It reaches the highest mountain/And it flows to the lowest valley/That blood that gives me strength from day to day/It’ll never lose its power”.  Jessy Dixon wrote ‘Hold On’, a song of encouragement: “Weeping may endure for a night/But if you’ll trust in Jesus/Everything’s gonna be alright”.

‘Just Because I Asked’ is the song of one amazed: “I can’t help singing/I feel I’m bursting/I can’t keep it to myself, oh no/For the Spirit is moving in me/And has filled me and made me new”.  Last up is another classic, ‘My Tribute’.  It exalts God: “With His blood He has saved me/With His power He has raised me/To God be the glory/For the things He has done”.

If you enjoy the easy listening and inspirational sounds of Twila Paris, Sandi Patty, and early era Amy Grant, you should pick up this superb collection by a true Christian music pioneer.  These are songs that come from a childlike innocent faith in Jesus Christ.  The lyrics admit life can oft be difficult, but point to Jesus as the solution to our problems.  He is loving and compassionate and yearns for a personal relationship with us.  I’m rating OUR ReCOLLECTIONS 100%.  For more info visit:

Friday, March 17, 2017


Thousand Foot Krutch released their indie label debut SET IT OFF back in 2000.  In 2003 they followed it up with PHENOMENON (Tooth & Nail) on September 30th.  A bit before that, on July 22, 2003, FM Static released their debut album which I’ll be reviewing here.  It is called WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? Two of the band’s four members at the time were also part of Krutch, those being Trevor McNevan (vocals), and Steve Augustine (drums).  On this side project they were joined by Justin Smith (bass), and John Bunner (guitar).  The album was produced by Aaron Sprinkle and executive produced by Brandon Ebel.  Sprinkle also provides additional guitars on the album.  The band thanks God “for blessing us with each day we have to do this”.
‘Three Days Later’ is a fun pop song: “Call up your friends and let’s go down to the beach/Bring your stereo and all your favorite CD’s/We’ll bring all the guitars, sit on top of our cars, and sing the night away/Just like rock stars”.  ‘Crazy Mary’ is one of the album’s three hit singles.  This pop song is about a troubled girl: “She watches the world pass her by like a freight train/And they all call her the same names, laughing as they point and stare at her/So she cries out to God up in Heaven/Been prayin’ since she was eleven for Him to send someone to meet her there/Maybe if I took a little time/Then she’d heal a little if she wants to”.
‘Something to Believe In’ is a pop/punk song of one seeking meaning and purpose: “I don’t wanna look, I just wanna find/Can you give me somethin’ to believe in?/Keep your religion, don’t need your lies/I’m just lookin’ for one good reason/I feel like it’s teenage hunting season and nothing out there sounds half decent/Who’s out there?/Who’s gonna save us?/Before we all fall through the cracks in the pavement”.  ‘Definitely Maybe’ is a story song: “I met a girl named Tara and she lived in the heart of America/She liked black caddies, listened to Puff Daddy, danced till her legs were sore/She worked around the corner at a diner with a grouchy owner/And her boyfriend’s shady, dates another girl named Katie/He loves her/Definitely maybe”.
‘Donna’ is a fast paced pop/punk song that finds a guy conversing openly with a gal: “Oh Donna/Won’t ya pick me up tomorrow?/I need to get out of this place I’m in and get my life in order/Although this world just might fall apart/I’ve got enough in my heart to get us started/Come with me, oh, I’m beggin’ you please/Or just say goodbye, cause this is the end of me”.  ‘All the Days’ is about a group of friends going off to separate post-secondary institutions: “This is the last day of our freshmen summer/Textbooks and essays wait around the corner/Saying goodbye now to our best friends/We’ll try if we can to get home on weekends.../Probably won’t see each other the same ways/But no matter what happens/I’ll never forget all the times we’ve had together”.
‘Hold Me Twice’ includes these words from a girl to a boy: “You can hold me once, you can hold me twice/Even better if the stars are good tonight/You can hold me, be my one and only”.  However, the girl ends up moving away: “365 days have gone by now and I could paint a picture of you/I see you every time I pass your locker/Remember the time we talked till 6 a.m./And I’m tired of missing you”.  ‘The Notion’ is a rocker about having a great time: “Let’s go!/Don’t say maybe/Forget everyone around/Let’s get together and get down/I know it sounds crazy/1, 2, 3 times a lady/Oh no, I’ve got the notion/Let’s get together and start the commotion/Round and round til everyone stops/Til the next needle on the record player drops”.
‘October’ speaks of a girl who ends up becoming famous: “I saw you in Cosmopolitan and your hair was down and everybody liked you/I remember way back when, way back in grade seven/Cause your hair was down and everybody liked you/You were a smart girl/Favorite day was Earth Day/Forget what those jerks say/I dug you in the worst way/No doubt, cause you even went out and bought me a Boyz-N-the-Hood soundtrack for my birthday”.  ‘My First Stereo’ is an ode to one’s music machine: “Somethin’ tells me I’ll never be close to another like you/Helped me through the things that we all go through/Everyone wants, everyone needs/Everyone hurts sometimes like me/It never rejects me, always accepts me/Nothing can compete with my first stereo”.  After a several minute lengthy silence, the album concludes with the hidden acoustic track ‘Hey Now’.  It’s about being smitten with a girl: “Every minute I’m not with you/I hope I’ll see you soon/There’s just something that happens when you walk into the room/And instantly I feel so complete/It hits me right about the time you kiss my cheek/And you give me this feeling/It’s like no other feeling/But it knocks me off my feet”.
WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? is mainly a mainstream fast paced pop/punk music album, although two of the songs speak of a deeper spiritual meaning.  There are happy songs about infatuation and love, as well as songs that long for a gal, and one that reaches out to a hurting gal.  There is even a love song to one’s stereo.  As a side project of two TFK members, this album is a success, as it does not sound like the rock music that band puts out.  The lyrics here are not that deep and will appeal most to the teenage crowd. Fans of MxPx and Relient K should buy this disc. It’s a fun listen which I’m giving 85%.  For more info connect with the band on Facebook.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017


Switchfoot began as Chin Up in 1996.  By the time they released their debut album THE LEGEND OF CHIN the next year, they were known as Switchfoot.  Their third album LEARNING TO BREATHE, which came out in 2000, was nominated for a Grammy for ‘Best Rock Gospel Album’.  Four of the band’s songs were used in the 2002 Mandy Moore film ‘A Walk to Remember’.  In 2005 Switchfoot released their fifth studio album, NOTHING IS SOUND (Sony BMG/Sparrow).  Group members were: Jon Foreman, Tim Foreman, Chad Butler, Jerome Fontamillas, and Andrew Shirley.  The album was produced by John Fields and the band.  It reached #1 on the U.S. Top Christian Albums chart and #3 on the U.S. Billboard 200.  The album was nominated for a Dove for ‘Rock/Contemporary Album of the Year’.

‘Lonely Nation’ is a catchy rock song about a gal coming apart: “She’s been breaking up inside, inside/Singing without tongues, screaming without lungs/I want more than my lonely nation (2X).../Lonely, lonely.../Don’t leave me hollow/I’m tired of feeling low, of feeling hollow”.  ‘Stars’ was the album’s first single, peaking at #16 on the U.S. Hot Modern Rock Tracks chart.  It won a Dove for ‘Short Form Music Video of the Year’.  Andy Sturmer sings background vocals on this song nature lovers will dig: “I’ve been thinking about everyone/Everyone you look so lonely/But when I look at the stars I see someone else/When I look at the stars I feel like myself”.

Next up is ‘Happy is a Yuppie Word’.  One online source defines a yuppie as “a young person with a well-paid job and a fashionable lifestyle”.  This rock ballad exposes materialism: “I’m looking for a bridge I can’t burn down/I don’t believe the emptiness/I’m looking for the kingdom coming down/Everything is meaningless/I want more than simple cash can buy/Happy is a yuppie word/Nothing is sound!”  ‘The Shadow Proves the Sunshine’ is Psalm-like: “Oh Lord, why did You forsake me?/Oh Lord, don’t be far away, away/Storm clouds gathering beside me/Please Lord don’t look the other way”.

‘Easier than Love’ is a pop/rock song about lust: “Sex is currency/She sells cars, she sells magazines/Addictive, bittersweet/Clap your hands with the hopeless nicotines.../She is easier than love, is easier than life/It’s easier to fake and smile and bribe.../Sex is industry, the CEO of corporate policy”.  ‘The Blues’ is a ballad that includes these words that the prodigal son could have spoken: “I miss direction most in all this desperation/Is this what they call freedom?/Is this what you call pain?/Is this what they call discontented fame?”

‘The Setting Sun’ is a pleasant pop song about heaven: “My hope runs underneath it all/The day that I’ll be home/It won’t be long/I belong somewhere past this setting sun/Finally free, finally strong/Somewhere back where I belong.../Let the weak say I am strong and it won’t be long/Let the right say I was wrong and it won’t be long/Let us find where we belong, beyond this setting sun”.  ‘Politicians’ is a pounding rock song with words still appropriate for today: “Everything is breaking down, breaking down/I pledge allegiance to a country without borders, without politicians/Watching for my sky to get torn apart”.

‘Golden’ is a terrific adult contemporary number boosting a gal’s self-esteem: “She’s been staring down the demons who’ve been screaming she’s just another so and so, another so and so/You are golden, you are golden child/You are golden, don’t let go/Don’t let go tonight.../The earth spins and the moon goes round/The green comes from the frozen ground/And everything will be made new again like freedom in spring!”  ‘The Fatal Wound’ makes use of harmonica and includes these heavy words: “I am the crisis/I am the bitter end/I’m gonna gun this down/I am divided/I am the razor edge/There is no easy now/Son of sorrow, staring down forever with an aching view/Disenchanted, let’s go down together with the fatal wound”.

‘We Are One Tonight’ was the album’s second single.  It was #8 on the Christian Hit Radio year end chart.  Rachel Masen sings background vocals on this happy pop/rock song: “We are one tonight and we’re singing it out/We are one tonight and we’re dreaming out loud/Though the world is flawed these scars will heal.../I don’t want to lose the common ground with the whole world upside down”.  The song’s about unity.  Last up is ‘Daisy’ a sleepy ballad of surrender that turns into a rocker at the end.  Chris Westlake and Tommy Barbarella play strings on this song about surrender: “Let it go, daisy let it go/Open up your fist/This fallen world doesn’t hold your interest/It doesn’t hold your soul/Daisy, let it go../He gives Himself away...”

NOTHING IS SOUND clocks in at 51 minutes and 6 seconds.  Jon Foreman`s vocals are passionate.  The emptiness of lust, greed, and materialism is explored here.  Loneliness is a common theme.  The album does however, offer hope and peace, cries for unity, and points to heaven with anticipation.  This is a perfect modern rock album with doses of pop mixed in.  Fans of Skillet and Thousand Foot Krutch should acquire this one.  The lyrics here are deeper and more thought provoking in many cases than those two bands however.  I`m rating NOTHING IS SOUND 100%.  For more info visit:

Monday, March 13, 2017


Thousand Foot Krutch formed in Peterborough, Ontario, Canada in 1997.  The next year they released the now out of print THAT’S WHAT PEOPLE DO, independently.  In 2000 they released SET IT OFF on an indie label.  ‘Puppet’ was a highlight on that album.  In 2003 Krutch signed with Tooth & Nail Records and put out PHENOMENON.  On the album, produced by Aaron Sprinkle and the band, Krutch is: Trevor McNevan (vocals, guitar), Steve Augustine (drums), and Joel Bruyere (bass).  Sprinkle plays additional guitars.  The band thanks “God for the chance to use the gifts He’s given us”.

Starting things off is the album’s first single and title track ‘Phenomenon’.  It hit #1 on ChristianRock.Net.  It’s basically meant to energize the crowd: “Down, here comes the sound/Everyone pound your feet to this phenomenon/Now, let’s make it loud/Let me show ‘em all how you move to this phenomenon/Whoa, open your soul/Baby, lose control inside of this phenomenon/Just let yourself go/We’ll let everyone know/You moved to this phenomenon”.  ‘Step to Me’ is a great rock song aimed at Satan: “I’m sick of letting you control the places that I go/I’m never giving into you again/Take another look at me/And tell me what you see/All of these cats tryin’ to get under my skin/But they can’t step over me/You try to control me/But you can’t hold me/You don’t own me/If you ever step to me”.

‘Last Words’ seems told from the perspective of one who has committed suicide: “You’ve got what it takes to make it through/And if I was you I’d get down on my knees and pray/Thank God in the morning for another day/Cause these are the last words/I’m ever gonna get to say to you/When everything falls away from you/Take these words and know that the world is not worth leaving”.  ‘This is A Call’ is a moving ballad about finding purpose: “And they say someone out there sees us/Well, if you’re real, then save me Jesus/Cause I’ve been this way for far too long/I wasn’t meant to feel alone.../I’m asking You to show me what this life is all about”.

‘Rawkfist’ hit #1 on and broke into the Top 40 on mainstream radio.  It’s a punchy rocker that’s all about having fun: “Throw up your rawkfist/If you’re feelin’ it when I drop this/Show ‘em how we blow the spot/Let’s make it hot/Let’s shock ‘em with the bodyrock/Til the party stops/It’s time to take it up a notch and keep it locked/For all the headbangers in the parking lot”.  ‘Faith, Hope And Happiness’ speaks of the downside of fame: “Every single word I say is judged by a million critics/Every which way you turn you’ve got the sound of a million voices/Every single move you make is torn by a million cynics.../Wish everything didn’t happen to me/All I want is faith, love and happiness”.

‘I Climb’ is a rock song about relationships: “I don’t want you to be anything at all/I just want you to say you love me/I don’t care, just stop living like this/I don’t want to be anything at all/I just want you to see who I am/And stop the violence, no more silence/I’m gonna show ya I’m alive/Breathing clearly for the first time/Hold me in your arms/Take me to the place where you are”.  ‘Quicken’ cries out to God: “It’s coming to that point/I’m down on my knees/I’m praying/You change my life and change me/I’ll follow You there/Got nothing to lose/Unwind me, heal my sickness/Unravel this and set me free”.

‘New Design’ talks of loneliness: “Sometimes I feel so alone/It feels like I’m standing out here on my own/I’ve never felt so far from home/It’s comin’ on/It hits me when I step outside my zone.../I’ve never felt so far from home”.  ‘Bounce’ is an energetic fun rocker: “Everyone bounce!/Show me what it’s all about/Don’t stand up, bounce/Cause we’re takin’ over now/It’s TFK, we rock the party/We keep the party jumpin’ in an old school way/Bounce!/Show me what it’s all about/Don’t touch us, bounce/Get up and let it all hang out/If you find it hard to breath, ya better just leave/We ‘bout to make it hotter than the third degree!”

‘Ordinary’ is a song of reflection: “You could never stop this feelin’ I’ve got inside of me/And you could never fill these shoes/Cause I refuse to lose/I’m just ordinary me/Digging slowly, flowers growing/Beautiful from inside of me”.  ‘Break the Silence’ is conversational: “You make me feel complicated sometimes/I try to explain the way/You took me, turned it all around/Everyone will know the minute we let it go/I can’t take it anymore/Let’s be original”.

Well, you won’t find any sex or drugs here, but you will find lots of ambitious rock ‘n’ roll!  In fact the only ballad is ‘This is A Call’.  It’s a good one by the way.  Three of the songs are simply about rocking out and having a good time.  Other topics include: crying out to God, fighting Satan and loneliness, and the cost of fame.  You won’t find much theological depth here lyrically, but it would be a good album to work out to.  Fans of Skillet and Manic Drive will enjoy this effort, but it’s not as strong as several of Krutch’s other works, so I’m only giving it an 83%.  For more info visit: