Saturday, September 10, 2011

Jason Gray: A Way to See in the Dark Review

Jason Gray is known for his honest and contemplative lyrics. And after the highly successful Everything Sad is Coming Untrue project featuring the blockbuster radio singles “More Like Falling In Love” and “I Am New,” Jason is back at it again with his fourth Centricity Music project A Way to See in the Dark. Jason explores the fear of nothing being enough and failing God, but yet simultaneously, he delivers songs of hope in this wonderful twelve-track project.

The catchy acoustic pop track “Remind Me Who I Am” puts a great start off to Jason’s A Way to See In the Dark project. The music video definitely helped shed light on this awesome track – that no matter how we feel, God calls us His beloved, and this track is a prayer that God would help us to remember that we are His chosen. Even more upbeat with memorable guitar works, “The End of Me” borrows lyrics from the classic hymn “Peace Like A River,” making for clever lyrics: “I found peace like a river to attend my soul/ hope running over when I let go/ I found joy that was hidden for all these years/ and love overflowing to wash over everything/ here at the end of me.”

With deep vocals, “No Thief Like Fear” was a perfect track to hear Jason perform, speaking of the battle of love versus fear. The choral effects and layered vocals added a ton to this track, but the underlining message was very encouraging: “My God has set me free from these chains holding me.” Following, Jason sings about enjoying every day of life and not wasting the time that God has given us through “Good To Be Alive.”

“The Sound of our Breathing” was a little less thrilling to me, but had very creative lyrics, especially during the pre-chorus: “’Cause the name of God is the sound of our breathing/ hallelujah’s rise on the wings of our hearts breathing/ so breathe in breathe out…” The following track, “Without Running Away” boasts Jason’s songwriting skills, especially the second verse: “Jesus is speaking but it’s so hard to hear when the disciples with swords are cutting off ears/ broken and bleeding, waiting for healing to come/ the wounded’s a part that I’ve learned to play well/ but the wound may run deeper than I know how to tell/ the pain’s an addiction that keeps me buried alive…” The track goes on to answer the predicament by stating that “you must run the risk of fearlessly loving without running away.”

Based on 1 John 4:8, the more country-sounding “Fear is Easy, Love Is Hard,” contemplates the battle of love verses fear. Especially a standout about this track is the smashing chorus: “Fear will leave you hiding in the dark/ but love will bring a light into your heart/ so do not be afraid…” The beautiful “Nothing Is Wasted,” filled with a strong tempo, speaks of how God will use even scraps and ruins to make something beautiful – a very encouraging, straight-to-heart track.

The clever title track speaks of how God will lead us one step at a time in the darkness. The electronic effects, fill-ins, and of course, the amazing lyrics made this one awesome title track. Following is “The Other Side,” a somewhat playful track musically, but is a serious prayer that God would teach us and help us learn to rely on Him through whatever we are going through. “I Will Find A Way,” a much slower track, is a bit hard to follow, but appears to tell a story of an ashamed girl who only Jesus Christ can come through and save, as it  paves the way for the perfect ending track “Jesus We are Grateful,” a timeless track of thanks for all that Jesus Christ has done for us.

Jason Gray’s honesty and creativity in song-writing, his acoustic pop and catchy melodies make his music a hit with listeners. His fourth Centricity Music project, A Way to See in the Dark, will definitely not let fans down! From the encouraging, fun sounding “Remind Me Who I Am” radio single to the slower, but steady and worshipful closing track “Jesus We are Grateful,” this project has a little of everything, making for a great listen!

Rating: 4/5
Release date: September 13, 2011

Track listing:
1. Remind Me Who I Am
2. The End of Me
3. No Thief Like Fear
4. Good to Be Alive
5. The Sound of Our Breathing
6. Without Running Away
7. Fear Is Easy, Love Is Hard
8. Nothing Is Wasted
9. A Way to See In the Dark
10. The Other Side
11. I Will Find A Way
12. Jesus We are Grateful

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