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With grateful acknowledgement to: 7CORE MUSIC, AUTHENTIC, CAPITOL CMG, ESSENTIAL CHRISTIAN, INTEGRITY,   McCAIN, PLANKTON, PROVIDENT & VERITY MEDIA ORGANISATIONS.

RECORDS OF THE MONTH


JESUS CULTURE : Church Volume One (Live)

With the back catalogue Jesus Culture have, this live recording is what you would expect -  reverb filled, big sounds. The songs are lengthy, maybe the studio versions would be shorter. ‘Live’ does leave room to expand/extend and develop what is happening in the venue. Still In Control, contains lines from well-known hymns – It is well with my soul. (Repetitive). I like the speaking in the middle, trying to involve the bystanders maybe – a good thing. King Of Love. Welcome guitar breaks, I like the lyrics, good balance of non-predictable lyrics yet easy to see where they are going, a well-constructed song. Nothing But Good a really good song, I partially liked this, more of a testimony song to start with and then involves the congregation. Nice structure, as most of the songs have and an enjoyable album. Every track has its merits, one of the best worship albums I have heard for a while. 10/10.   Noel Donaldson.


LEANNA CRAWFORD : Leanna Crawford EP.   (Provident)

After releasing two smashing singles, Leanna Crawford’s EP is now available. Of course, is goes without saying, that I still wax lyrical about “Truth I’m Standing On.” As soon as I heard it, the song hit my heart. The other single release, “Funeral,” is good too. Leanna sings about holding a funeral for “the old me.” After giving her life to Jesus, she knows that there’s only one way forward. “Photoshop” is a well written tune. Here, Leanna challenges women, especially, not to fall for that the media say they should be. “You don’t need no photoshop. Don’t  need to be what you not. You’re  already a treasure; no-one can make you better.” It’s a choppy little number that goes around in your head for hours after hearing it. A nice piano intro begins the quieter “Mean Girl,” but, there’s still a great message to the song. The hurt that is caused by words that others may have called you, can often cause such painful memories. Leanna calls to her Father in Heaven to remind her that her worth, is worth, so much more than their words. The song is truly beautiful and healing for those who have suffered this way. I love Leanna’s voice. There’s just a real quality there that attracts me to her songs. Love will change your life, is the theme behind “This is What They Meant.” Bright and bouncy sounds carry the song along, that results in a cheerful feel. The final song finds Leanna declaring that she loves Jesus, and to sing about her freedom. If that’s seen as being uncool, then she’s more than happy to be “Uncool.” If you’ve still not heard of Leanna Crawford, give this EP a listen. You won’t be disappointed.   10/10.


MOSAIC MSC : Human.    (Capitol CMG)

Here’s another live recording! It has a nice sound balance, (not too much reverb!) and a nice mix of instruments, leaving space for each other. I haven’t come across Mosaic MSC before. Their music is very individual, unlike the many live albums I have heard before, with offbeat rhythms fused together into a very listenable sound. Trying to pick out the individual parts is quite challenging at times. Mosaic MSC should not to be pigeonholed, because their sound is their own. I, particularly, enjoyed ‘Steady,’ with its nice cool down at the end, and the congregation brought into the mix. ‘Can’t Refuse’ has a great feel and message, too.  This is a refreshingly different album, very enjoyable. Well put together, lyrically different, and no overpowering drums. 10/10.   Noel Donaldson.


KERWOOD : Get Back Up Again.   (https://www.kerwoodband.com/)

Dave Kerwood has been making music from a young age, but Kerwood (the band) was founded in 2016 as a project to sing songs of hope to the hopeless. The band released a 7-song EP, Lovelight, in 2017, touring heavily throughout Kansas and Missouri. "Get Back Up Again," the newest release in Kerwood's monthly "The NEW Project," is a challenge from father to daughter to push through against adversity, a message particularly poignant at this time in history. I liked the opening musical phrases to the song, but found the vocals to be a little quiet. However, the level improves quickly and Dave seems to be more confident in his delivery, as the song progresses. It’s a mid-tempo number that, in parts, reminded me of some Steely Dan sounds. “Just keep your eyes fixed on the things that you live for,” he sings, and prompts his daughter to “Get back up again,” from falls and trials. Of course, the message could apply to anyone of us and, sometimes, we all need a little encouragement. As for the song, it’s definitely worth 7/10.


DON NILAN JR. My Name/Not in My Head.  http://www.littlepacific.com

Don is one of those Christian artists who runs a successful business, which helps to fund his love and calling, in sharing original music with a message, to those in need. Whether it’s out on the streets, or working through the Prisoners for Christ program in Shelton, Washington, Don can be found, singing for the Lord. He says; “. I have one goal with my music and that's to inspire people to feel the power of God thru sound.” Before the release of his of forthcoming album, “Children of the Light,” Don has released two songs. The first is called “My Name,” and it’s aimed for people in prison. It’s a very basic, folk number, with just a lead vocal and acoustic guitar. To be honest, it took me a few plays to appreciate the simplicity of the song. Personally, I would have liked to hear a little more variation in the backing but, it’s not my song. Lyrically, the theme is about life’s journey – the trials, the tribulations, our mistakes. Despite all this, we walk in the forgiveness of Jesus. And, that is true for us all, God knows my name. The second song, “Not in My Head,” is a little more adventurous, musically. There’s some really nice swirling guitar sounds, as well as keyboards, and Don’s vocal suits the song well.. The song is mid-tempo, and because of those aforementioned sounds, I was taken back to a time were bands like Ten Years After and Grateful Dead were in their prime. This time, Don sings; “When I came to Jesus, I was such a broken man. He’s still putting pieces back into me, like only God can.”  So, as a taster for the album, Don shows that he can make some interesting, musical moves, which bodes well for the future.   7/10.


THROWBACK KID : Love the People.   (www.7coremusic.co.uk)

Take a splash of Badly Drawn Boy, a spoonful of Jack Johnson, add a sprinkling of The Beach Boys and top off with a little Waterboys Fisherman’s Blues era and you’ll come close to Throwback Kid. Pete James is back with a sound that instantly feels like it’s a summer’s day, walking along the water’s edge. A laid back, lazy organ sound and piano is Pete’s musical vehicle. However, the lyrics have a real message to politicians. “No-one is saying your job is easy……..you’ve got to stand up for peace, you’ve gotta love the people.” At times, there’s even a hint of Bob Dylan in the vocals, a’la “Like A Rolling Stone.” I’m not sure that this was written as a protest song, or a prayer? But, it certainly makes for a song with a clear message. 7/10.


MELANIE WALDMAN   (https://melaniewaldman.com/)

Melanie’s testimony includes: Haunted by a childhood of darkness, fear and abuse; a young adulthood of suppressed feelings, manipulations and lies; and impending personal and financial ruin, my life was changed forever in a miraculous personal encounter with Jesus. Restoration of every kind was received.  I want to tell you about my miracle to encourage and inspire you to press on to the great fullness that awaits you in Christ. Produced by Michael Farren, Melanie has released three new songs. The first, “Heaven Come Down,” features Alisa Turner, that has a gentle, country sound to it. “What if your breakdown is a breakthrough; and the unknown is a new view of Heaven coming down?” It’s a lovely song and beautifully sung. “Look What Love Has Done” adds a little more music to proceedings, and Melanie provides excellent vocals, as does Farren. The lyrics are all based around the title, and Melanie declares that because of this, her life is a miracle.

The third number is one of those that you just have to join in with. The chorus, particularly, has a triumphant sound to it. “He will lead me, there is no place I will go, where He hasn’t gone before. Right into victory, the glory is the Lord’s.” In fact, I loved this song so much; I just had to play it again! A thumping beat and great sound overall. I’d not come across Melanie Waldman before, but I think that is about to change.   9/10.


PERRY LE’HAIE :  Him. (www.perrylehaie.com)

Despite his name being known to NFN for a few years, Perry LaHaie's music is new to me. He is a singer/songwriter and recording artist "with FrontiersUSA, an international community dedicated to inviting Muslims worldwide to follow Jesus. He is also a morning drive-time radio host, as well as host of the syndicated inspirational radio feature, Cast Yourself In". The ten-track 'Him' is Perry's third full-length release and "tells the grand, epic story of God. It's the story of the great King who crosses worlds to find us". From the off I gained the impression that a lot of care has gone into this project with the musicianship, arrangements, mixing and production largely impressive and serving well Perry's attractive slightly husky lead vocals. It turns out that the two original compositions are particularly strong and therefore my standouts. Alt-rock-pop opener 'Cast yourself in' gets things off to a rousing start, whilst the other is the beautiful 'Oh mystery of mysteries', evidently co-written with daughter Kali and son Taylor. From these examples I could have wished for more of these rather than the re-worked hymns that make up the majority of the album, although it has to be said that most are well done. The best is 'The solid rock', based on 'My hope is built on nothing less' but with a very effective new chorus ("I'll stand on Christ"). For me there are three however that don't quite work. The rather sprightly arrangement of 'O for a thousand tongues' doesn't seem to reflect the power of the lyrical content. I found 'God is working His purpose out' a bit boring and the closer 'O come o come Emmanuel (How long)' similarly uninteresting - yet to my surprise this is slated as the first single, so what do I know?! A lot of talent evident on this album then, Perry is a great singer, but on this evidence I would like to think that a follow-up will be full of originals. 8/10. Dave Deeks


DAVE GRIFFITHS : Tweed Jacket Music Compilation #1

(https://davegriffiths.bandcamp.com/album/tweed-jacket-music-compilation-1)

This release is a round-up of Dave’s work over the last year as he’s taken a dive deeper into ambient and instrumental music. This includes his recent collaboration with Pink Floyd touring guitarist, Tim Renwick. There are also songs from his band, Chaos Curb. “Ambient” describes it very well – calm tones, gentle melodies, background drones, tinkly piano: it’s all there. It’s very well recorded and produced and has a nice range of musical tones from the tinkly piano to bagpipes to acoustic guitar to drums. I preferred the material with a bit more structure and rhythm to it, such as “Dawn Returning” which reminded me of Mike Oldfield in his pomp. If that appeals, then that one track alone is worth the £5 Dave is asking for this release. I’d have loved it even more if it had morphed into one of the other tracks (like “Suburban Spirit”, for example, with “Fireside” as a prelude). I wasn’t too sure about the stuttered distortion in “Thoft – Avoidant” which reminded me of a CD that gets stuck and seemed to break the ambient mood more than necessary. The other Thoft track (“Unthink”) also seemed a bit out of place and more likely to wake you up agitated than soothe you. Like all compilations, it’s a bit of a mixed bag, but I think it might have been better as 2 albums – one to soothe you and one to agitate you. If it had been a vinyl release, then I guess I’d have expected the two sides to be so labelled. Best track: “Dawn Returning”.

7 /10   Paul Ganney.


MIKE RATHKE : The Dawning Fire.   (https://open.spotify.com/album/27gBUAjKmHVS5QuHvhh32p)

This 5 track EP was recorded at Sound Emporium in Nashville, and the EP was produced by Billy Chapin (Backstreet Boys, Sister Hazel, Edwin McCain), and co-produced by Brandon Bailey. The opening “Reign Forevermore” is a no-holds barred song of worship and was an instant hit with me. “One Taste” is a foot tappin’ number on the theme of faithfulness, while “O Lord You’re Beautiful” is a simple love song to Jesus. All the songs are guitar led, and the whole production is really clean and crisp. Vocally, Mike sings with a smooth tone which I found to fit the songs perfectly. The title track has some lovely steel guitar sounds, that I enjoyed hearing, as I relaxed in today’s sunshine. The closing “Every Era” looks to the return of Jesus to the earth, when everyone’s knee will bow before Him. Kansas native, Mike certainly has a God-given talent with his music and I can see why, in the past, been invited to play at various festivals in the U.S. Here’s another independent artist who deserves the chance to get his music out to a wider audience.   9/10.


SARAH KROGER : Standing in Your Light. (Integrity Music)

Sarah Kroger is a worship leader and songwriter. Originally from Melbourne, FL, Sarah’s love for music started at a young age. With parents involved in music ministry, she grew up in a musical home and has been singing in church choirs since she was a child. This is her latest single is a song of hope and testimony that love is being shown all over the world, by believers just like her. In style, the song reminded of similar music made by secular artists such as Selina Gomez and Ariana Grande. It’s definitely a radio friendly track and really catchy, too. 8/10.


EMMA GRANT : Influencer.   (https://www.facebook.com/watch/emmagrantmusic/)

Liverpool’s Emma Grant releases her first album in a number of years, after taking a break from music to raise a family. This 10 track offering sees her make a few music moves, stylistically, and makes for a very interesting listen. Her recent single, “I Don’t Hate You,” is one of the best tracks on show, telling how it doesn’t feel like we disagree well! “Know You’re Loved” is the promise that no matter what you might be going through (good or bad), Jesus loves you. In the current Covid-19 situation, we seem to be constantly showered with news, but in recent times overall, fake news has become more prevalent. Emma says; “In an ideal world, you would be able to read an article and trust it was the truth you were reading, but sadly as we know, that's not the case.” The song “Fake News” kicks against believing everything you see and hear, making you fearful because of it. Not afraid to tackle emotive subjects Emma, then, looks at staying in an abusive relationship. Music-wise, she uses an, almost, ambient backing here, with her voice caressing each word. When I first heard Emma’s vocals, she reminded me of Kat Mills. However, hearing more this time, there’s a little leaning in both quality and style to Audrey Assad. “As I Am” is a song of praise, while the title track looks at how we treat our world. On the latter, I thought that the backing was rather “off-putting” towards the vocals, and I wasn’t really keen on the song at all. Of the other songs, the bluesy feel of “At Your Table” made a nice change, while I enjoyed the introduction of a violin to the piano led “What a World.” Emma certainly writes lyrics well, on various subjects, which is nice to see. I get a feeling that her songs would be ideally suited to small gatherings, where she could easily expand on the words being sung. So, after 10 years away from the music scene, Emma can be well pleased with her return.   8/10.


HIS CALLING : Lost Now Found.   (Raven Faith Records)

Opening with a lead guitar that sounds just like “Whisky In The Jar” era Thin Lizzy (plus a few Horslips-style riffs in the background), this was never going to be an album I was going to dislike. The gruff lead vocal laid over the top led me to comparisons with Third Day and (to a lesser extent) Nickelback. The arrangements were a bit too progressive for the latter to stick, though. The band are very tight (as befits one with such a live track record), the songs well written and the production spot on. The female vocal sits very nicely in amongst all the blues-rock and sits somewhere between “Great Gig In the Sky”-style wailings and lines Janis Joplin would have been proud of (the two vocals work best on “Angel Take Me Higher”, really complementing each other). Production-wise the middle of the album serves up some pleasant surprises. I really liked “Walk The Walk” with the way so many of the sonic themes wound around each other and floated to the fore and out again and the spoken vocal on “He Knew Me” which worked really well (too many people try it and miss). It’s the straight-ahead grooves that really grabbed me though, such as “No Matter How Many Storms” and “Angel Take Me Higher” that slowly work their way into your head and stay there. From the song titles (of which the best title was “Kneel Fast And Pray”), you can guess that the lyrics are very faith-based with an evangelistic hue, which they manage without being overly preachy. Best track: “Angel Take Me Higher”.   8/10.   Paul Ganney.


CASEY ADAM : Eternity.   (https://caseyafawcett.wixsite.com/caseyadamofficial)

This 3rd single from Casey looks to build on the well-received “Grateful” and “You Will Fight for Us,” released over the last couple of months. There’s no denying that Casey has a great voice, and this song is the perfect vehicle. The song flows at a mid-tempo pace, and is a celebration, rejoicing in the knowledge that we will live forever, because Jesus died for us. A nice guitar starts off the song, before Casey begins to sing.

The chorus sings  “Oh praise the Lord, He’s strong and mighty, worthy, worthy. Praise the Lord, His greatness is beyond understanding.  All my hearts desires, I lay them down and crown you King of my soul now. Oh praise the one who sets me free.” When writing this song, Casey said that he wanted to write an upbeat, joyful, worship song. Well, I think he’s done just that. A fresh sound all around and I like it!   9/10.

OCTOBER BIRD OF DEATH : Coffee Mug.  (Zap Records)

Short and to the point, this single track from October Bird Of Death regales you with the requirement for a coffee mug at 120mph. Fast, furious, fun.   7/10.   Paul Ganney.


MATTHEW WEST : Brand New.   (Story House Music)

Matthew West has been around the Christian scene for a long time. Nearly two decades in fact! Whether as an artist himself, or writing songs for others, he’s obviously gifted. The song, “Brand New” is testimony on how the singer came to know Jesus. A nice beat, helps the ditty along the way. “Walking Miracles” tells us to look around at all the people around us. Some of them have fantastic stories to tell, and are proof that we should never give up in prayer. “The God Who Stays” and “Grace Upon Grace” are both big production numbers, with the former raising a tear or two in this reviewer’s eye. And, if that doesn’t have the same effect with you, then “Too Young, Too Soon” will! Written about the suicide of 6th grade school fiend of his daughter, Matthew highlights just how lonely some people can be. On a more positive note, Matthew celebrates the person God has made him, on the Michael Buble style “The Me You Made.” And, as a follow up to that statement, he tells of what he might be without God, on “Without You.” This is a duet with one of my current favourite new artists, Leanna Crawford. Now, I know that there are only so many musical notes in existence. And, sometimes, there may be a slight similarity in songs by artists, who are poles apart. But, as soon as “Looking Up” began, I was singing the first verse of Dire Straits’ “Rome & Juliette.” Am I the only one to notice this? Anyway, in my opinion, the best track is left until last. I loved the rapid percussion to “The Man Who Needed Grace,” and it really did seem to be the stand-out song. No doubt, long-time fans of West’s music will have their own views.   7/10.


THE LeFEVRE QUARTET : Between the Prayer & the Answer.   (www.thelefevrequartet.com)

Great lead vocals and perfect harmonies have always been the backbone of this group’s music. Add to that, a terrific bass vocal, and you have a great sound. This new song celebrates God as The Master, and how HE’s working in your life. “He’s turning rivers of tears, back into laughter. He’s bringing peace to a storm, because He’s the Master. Musically, there’s some super orchestration, and the result is a terrific song.   9/10.


ALL TOGETHER UNITED : Anything is Possible.   (www.alltogetherunited.com)

This band present 6 songs on this EP, combining pop and rock sounds. The title track is a reminder of the power of the resurrection and the miracle of each new day gives us hope. The tune is really catchy, and makes for an enjoyable listen. Things get a little heavier on the following track, “Lord.” In fact, at one stage, the song moves into Stryper-esque territory, with a plodding beat. I much preferred “He’s Alive.” It’s full of well-worn clichés like “His blood was shed for me” and “Now He reigns upon His throne.”  But, the guys make these words sound brand new, with a more pop filled number. Similarly, “If I’m Breathing” is a bright, engaging song, that motors along with a great rhythm. The song reminds us that in  difficult moments we need to stop, take a deep breath and listen to the whispers of the Holy Spirit speaking to us. On most of the songs, All Together United provides very listenable music, and the closing “Star” shows the band at their best. Lead vocalist, Matthew Ide sings “Don’t care about fame. I wanna be a star to an audience of one.” The band’s mission is simple: “To reach those who are hurting, those who are lost, those seeking happiness or a solution to their troubles, and even those who just need encouragement from God through the message in the music He's given them to share.” And, for me, All Together United are doing that just fine.   8/10.


EL’ GRACE : It Belongs to You.   (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_OSYqoMZkg)

El’ Grace is a Nigerian gospel singer. She says; “The song is an expression of my heart to God, total submission to Him. I pray that God will touch everyone that listens.” The song is based around lyrics such as; “I give you my heart, I give my soul, I give you all of me, it belongs to you.” The singer’s vocals are sweet, backed by keyboards and string instruments. Mid-song, El’ Grace is joined by some nice backing singers. This gives her the chance to add some spontaneous worship, before returning to the main thrust of the song. Although, the lyrics are repeated several times, the song doesn’t become a bore. In fact, quite the opposite! The song is delightful, easy on the ear, and perfect for worship.   8/10.


ANITA WILSON : Dance Soul.   (Reflection Media Inc)

Dance Soul is a collection of remixes of fan favourites from Anita’s three albums, all Grammy nominated in the category of Best Gospel Album. “We spent over a year reimagining the remixes for this album,” said Anita Wilson. “I’m grateful that its release has come at such a pivotal time.” Well, with not ever hearing the original versions of the songs, I have to take this collection on their own merit. Style-wise, there’s a touch of dance, house, and disco influences. “Here’s to Life” struts itself into being, with just percussion and low volume keyboard pads, accompanying Anita’s vocals. I wasn’t impressed at all by that one. There’s almost a feel of Kool and the Gang to the funky “It’s Done.” The lyrics celebrate that Jesus has paid the price for us all, and it’s quite a decent track. I wish the same could be said of “Clap Your Hands!” The title gets repeated over and over again, to an annoying beat that never changes in either rhythms or tempo. Even the addition of Yolanda Adams voice cannot lift a truly awful number. What I couldn’t understand about these tracks (remixes or not) was that the producer(s) seemed to think that all they had to do was to repeatedly use the same words or phrases, plus some of the worst, mind-numbing beats I have ever heard. On the few occasions when Anita’s voice is left alone, you can tell that she delivers decent quality. “Speechless” is one track where you can really hear this. As for rest of the tracks, they couldn’t end quick enough.  3/10.

Editor’s note; I, subsequently listened to the original version of the song “Here’s to Life.” What a beautiful song. A gentle, piano backed ballad, with Anita singing as sweetly as anyone. I’m sorry, but the remixes do not do this singer justice.   


SUSAN ABARI : Holy Ghost Fire.   (https://www.instagram.com/_suzaine/?hl=en)

There’s a nice introduction to the song, with Susan giving thanks to Jesus. The off-putting percussion during the verses took a little getting used to, but once Susan launches into the chorus, things really improve. The song is said to be a heart-warming and spirit edifying cry for the Spirit of God. Certainly, as the song progresses, the lyrics centre on phrases like “He is here with fire in His eyes; He is here, filling our tongues with fire. The Holy Ghost is here.”  The song gets better with subsequent listens, in my opinion, and this Nigerian Gospel music minister, certainly has a talent.   6/10.


APRIL SHIPTON : Panoramic.   (https://aprilshipton.co.uk)

Malvern’s April Shipton’s songwriting is as skilled as it is heartfelt. She is no stranger to struggles, having suffered with anorexia and depression as an adolescent, but she experienced the mighty power of Jesus when a Christian friend prayed for her healing, and her mental health problems stopped immediately. Her testimony and songs are a powerful combination which she brings together during her acclaimed performances. This debut album features 12 original songs, beginning with the piano led “I Am Safe.” It’s a bright sound, as April declares that Jesus’ light will “lead me through the storm.” I really enjoyed the melody of “Journey On.” It’s got a great hook and is just an enjoyable listen. The slower paced “Sovereign” took a few listens to make its mark with me, as I wasn’t keen on the FX used on her, otherwise, delightful vocals. April, then, describes our lives as “Chapters.” No matter where we go, there’s one that we know; God is always with us.” This is another lovely song and, like the rest of the tracks, April gets the message across quickly. On the smooth sound of “Now That I’m Saved,” the theme is to tell the world about Jesus, and not keep Him a secret. I found it impossible not to join in with this one! On “Big Ol’ Mountain,” and “One More Mountain,” the songs look at the challenges that we face. And, when these challenges look impossible, they ARE possible when walking with Jesus. April has produced a pleasant album of songs, and engages the listener with charming vocals. She is certainly an artist to keep an eye out for, in the future.   8/10.


CHAOS CURB COLLABORATION : Suburban Spirit.   (https://www.facebook.com/chaoscurb/)

This song is a love song to Bournemouth, the UK town where the band is based. Vocalist and songwriter, Dave Griffiths says that the song is; “Inspired by the tones of radio hits of the 80s, that soundtracked our childhood growing up near the sea.”   Following an intro of spaced guitar chords, and saxophone, percussion is added to accompany the laid-back vocal delivery.  The chorus increases the tempo, but fits seamlessly with the verses. “This feeling. I can’t put my finger on it. It’s the suburban spirit. “ And, yes, there is real love in Dave’s voice! The second half of the song features some sampled birdsong, as well as the excellent skills of saxophonist, Steve Gregory. (The same guy who memorably contributed the famous sax hook on George Michael’s Careless Whisper!) The track definitely has an 80s vibe with a hint of Phil Collins about it, especially in that chorus. A really enjoyable number, and perfect for summer.   9/10.


RHETT WALKER : Good to Me.   (Provident)

This is Rhett’s third studio album, and it has already spawned his most successful single to date, “Believer.” Of the song, Walker says; “Believer,' a song about who we are in Jesus and we have been set free and redeemed, I wanted to make a record that points to who Jesus is to me, who I am because of Him and the journey I’ve been on with Jesus." I was instantly hit by Rhett’s modern country style, reminiscent of Billy Currington. There’s a thumping beat to “You Met Me There” and “Peace in the Family.” Out of the two, I much preferred the former. Mid-album comes my favourite songs. “Say So” and “Heavenly Home.” Both had an infectious sound and rhythm that I immediately began to tap my foot to. Similarly, “Say Hello” has a driving beat, and some great keyboard sounds. “Say goodbye to the worn and weary. Say hello to the brand new you.” I can see this song going down well at a live gig, closing the night, in the same way it ends this album. This is my first taste of Rhett’s music, and it’s a mixed bag. Good tracks, I’ve already mentioned but others, like the title track and the over-produced “Murderer,” left me cold. Still, it’s hard to please everyone. Nevertheless….7/10.


MISTER KEITH : Dig A Little Deeper.   (www.misterkeith.com)

As with Mister Keith’s previous single (Where Do We Go From Here?) this one contains great attention to detail – everything in the mix is there because it needs to be. The song starts slowly but builds nicely and hits the chorus at exactly the right time, building well from then on, dropping back, lifting etc. all keeping your attention throughout. The chorus itself reminded me a bit of modern Take That, crossed with a bit of Coldplay. It’s different to the previous single (a good thing) and I’m still keen to hear that album, if only to stop me playing this track yet again.   8/10.   Paul Ganney.


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