Monday, September 26, 2011

Jessa Anderson: Not Myself Anymore Review

After one listen to Jessa Anderson’s BEC Recordings debut Not Myself Anymore, it’s hard to believe that the project was actually recorded independently! After it fell into the hands of BEC Recordings, Jessa was signed and her new project was re-released. With this debut, the polished singer/songwriter clearly joins the ranks of her inspirations which include the critically-acclaimed Nichole Nordeman, Ginny Owens, and Sara Groves, and falls alongside other popular female-vocalist such as Audrey Assad and Holly Starr. Penning each song in honesty and originality, every track is different, making Jessa Anderson’s Not Myself Anymore a wonderful contemporary worship album!

The radio single “Not What I Thought” opens up Not Myself Anymore, acting autobiographical, telling of how Jessa discovered that Jesus Christ wants to come in and change us one thing at a time instead of have just a little time with us here and there. Also a radio single and fan-favorite from the debut is “Fireflies,” a piano pop track that speaks of how Jesus illuminates the darkness. The standout line, “You shine brighter than fireflies,” will no doubt have the listener singing along in no time.

The quirky “Everybody Has Those Days,” Jessa’s favorite track to sing live, definitely resonates with the listeners, speaking of the bad days in our lives where everything seems to be going wrong. However, this amazing line from the chorus encourages those who are going through “those days”: “Everybody has those days, but the beauty is often uncovered by facing the pain.” Following, “Worship the Lamb” is a standout for its beautiful melodies and harmonies, while “The Same Place” follows the message of “Everybody Has Those Days,” speaking of how we’ve all been through the same things.

The slower, piano-based title track is actually a look-back at previous relationships and is therefore a somewhat sad track. But Jessa says it’s also a track about how God has taken us and changed us, and we are no longer the same. “I Won’t Break” follows, stating that “I can bend in a million ways, but I won’t break,” while “Moving On” speaks of continuing to live life and move on from the heartbreaks and pains in our life.

“Offering,” a slower pop track, is excellent lyrically, speaking of having nothing to give God but offering Him a simple song of praise. Reflective of her previous eating disorder and her struggles along the way to who she is today, “Don’t Know” asks the question, “Who are we helping by hiding behind a veil that doesn’t show who I am inside?” And finally, “Return” concludes Not Myself Anymore, as Jessa sings about returning to Jesus and stopping hiding our worst from the world.

Jessa Anderson’s Not Myself Anymore album is a wonderful one! It’s great to hear the young artist’s timeless worship songs as well as her reflections on moving on from hurt and discovering who Christ has destined us to be. It’s easy to connect with this encouraging album, and her nice voice and contemporary music are enjoyable as well!

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

Track listing:
1. Not What I Thought
2. Fireflies
3. Everybody Has Those Days
4. Worship the Lamb
5. The Same Place
6. Not Myself Anymore
7. I Won’t Break
8. Moving On
9. Offering
10. Don’t Know
11. Return

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