Monday, March 26, 2012

Britt Nicole: Gold Review

Britt Nicole has been one of Christian music’s most beloved female vocalists since her 2007 debut Say It. Whether it be because of her mission to share that everyone has a purpose or because of her catchy pop with a hip-hop twist, both Say It and her sophomore project The Lost Get Found featured many chart-topping singles, including “You,” “Set the World on Fire,” “Headphones,” “Walk on Water,” or the title tracks. And, after a nearly three year wait, Britt Nicole returns with her third project Gold, featuring her most recent radio single “All This Time.” Britt continues to share the value God places on each individual through her latest album, which takes on a more defined electronic/dance pop sound.

Sounding like Mandisa’s radio single “Stronger,” the dance pop title track opens up Britt Nicole’s third studio project, with a message akin to “Headphones”: “This, this is for all the girls, boys all over the world/ whatever you’ve been told, you’re worth more than gold/ so hold your head up high/ it’s your time to shine/ ‘cause from the inside out it shows, you’re worth more than gold.” Britt Nicole also adds a rap bridge, as she did several times in her Say It album. It seems that Britt Nicole has directed the focus of her attention to the younger audiences, those that struggle through their adolescent years believing that they aren’t unique or don’t fit it.

The slower radio single “All This Time,” in which the tempo explodes by the chorus, follows, as Britt shares how she found love in God through her hardest season of life, her parents’ divorce (“You’ve been walking with me all this time”). The hip-hop orientated “Look Like Love” speaks of slowing down the world and loving those around us, because we may be the only love that they ever see. The effects on Britt’s vocals were especially cool.

If you can imagine “Hanging On” from The Lost Get Found, that’s the tempo of “Who You Say You Are,” a slower but powerful track that God is the same yesterday, today, and forever and “I’ll still be smiling when the sky is dark, cause I believe that You are Who You say You are.” This message of God’s faithfulness is very encouraging. “Ready Or Not,” about shining our light to the world, features Lecrae. My only criticism would be that he only appears for a short bridge. I wish they had let him appear for longer, especially through the last chorus. It is a fantastic track nevertheless, and hearing Lecrae was definitely a treat!

“Breakthrough” is characterized by a muffled disco beat, while “Stand” is slower but still contains the defined pop sound Britt Nicole has to offer. It seems to be based from Ephesians chapter 6 about continuing to stand through the battle, even when it feels like you’ve reached the battle: “…No I won’t turn and run/ this battle will be won/ when I’ve done all I can, I’ll stand!”

“The Sun is Rising” continues the trend of slower pop tracks, but it encourages those facing hard times that “the night can only last for so long” and the sun will rise before you know it. Britt’s soft vocals perfectly mixed with the tranquil dream beat. “Amazing Life,” follows, almost entirely electronic, except for Britt’s soaring vocals, as it speaks of how we can thoroughly enjoy the life God has given us.

“Still That Girl” builds up as it goes, addressed to Britt Nicole’s female audience, encouraging them to light the fire and choose to dream again. The album Gold closes with the soft “Seeing For the First Time,” a track about the wonders of God opening our eyes to the truth and finally being free.

A few tracks on the album Gold are a bit repetitious, and I do wish Britt had experienced with several other tempos other than JUST electronic or dance/pop. But overall, Britt Nicole’s third Sparrow Records album Gold is a solid project that breathes life into the listener, letting them know that they are valuable and not forgotten in God’s eyes. This message and ministry of Britt Nicole sets her apart from the Christian music industry. Fans whose favorite project is her debut Say It will particularly be happy with Gold.

Rating: 4/5
Release date: March 26, 2012

Track listing:
1. Gold
2. All This Time
3. Look Like Love
4. Who You Say You Are
5. Ready or Not
6. Breakthrough
7. Stand
8. The Sun is Rising
9. Amazing Life
10. Still That Girl
11. Seeing For the First Time

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