Thursday, September 9, 2010

Philips, Craig, and Dean "Fearless" Review

I have never been a fan of Philips, Craig, and Dean. That is why I was so surprised at the excellency of their latest album Fearless. Sounding much like Hillsong United, the band’s latest album contains many rock anthems as well as slow ballads. I found Philips, Craig, and Dean’s latest album Fearless to be nothing short of satisfactory.

“Counting On God,” is a definite fist-thrower, and is a track about “the miracle of Christ in me/ the mystery that set me free.” That miracle has given “joy unspeakable that won’t go away/ just enough strength to live for today/ so I never have to worry what tomorrow will bring/ ‘cause my faith’s on solid rock/ I’m counting on God!” This track was definitely the highlight of the album for me, and one that set off the album perfectly. “Counting On God” is followed by “From The Inside Out,” a song actually written by Hillsong United’s very own Joel Houston. Having heard several other renditions of this hit track, I would say that this version kept the originality of Hillsong United’s version in United We Stand. I especially enjoyed the bridge, where the three pastors sing out, “My soul cries out! My soul cries out to you!”

“Revelation Song,” Philips, Craig, and Dean’s latest radio single, is an extremely worshipful song. Written by Jenny Lee Riddle, this song has found itself winning a dove award for “Inspirational Song of the Year” in 2009. It’s powerful lyrics of the holiness of God, make a song that you can’t help but find yourself throwing your hands into the air in worship. “The Distance” is more of a ballad, with gorgeous piano sounds. The song, depicting us as a prodigal, speaks of how God runs to us when we wander from Him. The music in this song is similar to that of Casting Crown’s hit song “Slow Fade,” and is definitely an immediate sensation.

“When Grace Walks In” has a bit of a country feel to it, and is an encouragement to those who feel chained by sin: “It’s not over/ it’s not over/ this is the moment grace walks in/ with arms wide open/ arms wide open/ to tell you this is not the end/ when your doubt is strong and your will is weak/ to even believe again/that’s when grace, that’s when grace walks in.” “Spirit of God” has a strong guitar sound, and the three pastor’s “oh’s” open the track. I wouldn’t be surprised if this song finds it’s way to church songbooks for it’s encouraging message of letting go because “the Spirit of God is here.” I especially enjoyed the combination of the second verse and chorus: “Let’s approach Him/ let’s drawn near/ He is calling/ The Spirit of God is here!/ Angels worship/ saints revere/ the Spirit of God is here! (He is here)/ Let’s wake our souls and make a path/ prepare out hearts for holiness/ He is near/ whoa/ The Spirit of God!” It also takes a little inspiration from the burning bush passage when God instructs Moses to take off his shoes because he was standing on holy ground.

“Nothing To Prove” slows things again, and is one of the band’s tear-jerking songs, speaking about enjoying your life while you have it and that “when it’s finally time to say goodbye/ nothing to prove/ nothing to lose/ nothing to hide.”

By far, my favorite song on the album is “Let God Be God.” Guitar driven, with a strong, upbeat rhythm, it speaks of letting God be in control. I really enjoyed the almost hilarious lyrics of the chorus: “The tide rolls in and it rolls back out/ Never has God needed me to help/ the One who sees the sparrow falls/ knows what I need before I even call/ I think I’ll let God be God/ giving all control/ think I’ll relax step back/ It’s time for letting go/ if he kept the universe at sync a million years or so/ so the keeper of Creation knows, I think I’ll let God be God.” I don’t believe the universe is a million years, but the song speaks a profound yet simple message. ;) There’s even a brief rock-star scream after the second chorus!

“Great Are You Lord” is a slower song yet again, and similar to most of Philips, Craig, and Dean’s style. It speaks of the beauty of God’s majesty: “We sing great are You Lord!/ For we adore You/ Lift up Your name/ and fall before You/ We stand in awe/ and sing Great are You Lord!” I enjoyed the variation of notes at the end of the first part of the chorus. The album ends on an upbeat note with “Name Above All Names,” again a song of exaltation of the name of Jesus. I was glad that Fearless ended on the same upbeat sound it began with.

As previously mentioned, I have never been a fan of Philips, Craig, and Dean. But with Fearless, I began to rethink my stance of this group. These three pastors have brought us a very strong album full of mostly upbeat tracks as well as a few excellent worship songs. This is a superb album!
Rating: 4.5/5

Track listing:
1. Counting on God
2. From the Inside Out
3. Revelation Song
4. The Distance
5. When Grace Walks In
6. Spirit of God is Here
7. Nothing to Prove
8. Let God be God
9. Great Are You Lord
10. Name Above All Names

1 comment:

  1. Cool! This band has been okay to me, but I really like hearing songs they have covered, because I LOVE the sound of multiple voices harmonizing. :D They did an awesome "In Christ Alone" and "You Are My King," if you've not heard them before!


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