Reviewing Music

Obviously a very subjective endeavor.

I have a couple of CDs that were sent to me for review.

Songs For A Revolution of Hope, Vol. 1

This CD is produced by Brian McLaren in collaboration with Tracy Howe and The Restoration Project.  It will appeal to those who can appreciate the folksy, beatnik vibe and lyrics that echo the themes from Brian’s book, Everything Must Change. It is certainly an alternative to happy, clappy worship music.

Tracy is the featured vocalist on most of the songs. She has a beautiful voice. The track that I would put on my playlist is entitled “Majesty and Power” (13) – lyrically, my favorite. Other tracks of interest were “Hymn of Remorse” (11) – a bit melancholy, but the chorus showcases Tracy’s vocals and “Let’s Confess” (8) – an interesting piece with good rhythm and a beat poetry feel.

Overall, not my cup of tea, but that’s just me. You can listen to various tracks here to see which ones you might enjoy.

Evensong Rising

Their specific ‘sound’ is a fusion of styles, from rock to bluegrass to reggae to jazz to soul. As Sorenson says: “You see, when you have three Jamaicans, a Celtic violinist, a rock drummer, a pop guitarist, and a lead singer from the south, together playing the music they love, Evensong Rising is what you get.”

The group leads worship at a church in Greenwich, CT. There is an eclectic mix of songs and styles on this CD.  The instruments are outstanding. I personally preferred the tracks that featured the female vocalists, such as “Stand Firm” (3) and “Make Us New Again” (6). The best place to preview the songs to see if they appeal to you is here.

Beyond their music, be sure to check out the causes that they are involved in.  They have partnered with The Rising Group to support Rise Up! – an initiative for spiritual awakening and humanitarian activism and Bread for the World – a Christian voice for ending hunger in the world.


8 thoughts on “Reviewing Music

  1. Listened to both, neither really my cup of tea… But then I would always prefer a nice Latin evensong to a Rising one.

    Interesting to see McLaren releasing music.

  2. Have any of you guys Stateside heard of Duke Special – he is like a modern Van Morrison.Brought up in a Charismatic Church but not much involved now he sings of transcendence.First Album ‘Songs of the Deep Forest’ is a classic which has a track called ‘No Cover Up’ about honest and should be the anthem for all post charismatics.Another track talks about ‘ the tongue just had to go’ in reference to I guess his one time glossalalia experiences.The Spirit will touch you through these songs which are not mrbib but great fun.He also has a new album just out here in Ireland but Songs is the best.



  3. Frank,
    I’ll have to check that out. I’ll be over later today to share my missional thoughts at your blog.

    They weren’t really mine either, but I always try to point out some positives. I think that live worship with the evensong group would be a good experience.

    I recently saw a clip of his. It didn’t really grab me, but I’ll have to check out more of his music.

    Glad you enjoyed it.

  4. Grace

    Don’t let Duke’s dreads and black eye liner put you off – underneath lies a ‘prophet’ – I hope Universal his record company don’t try and turn him into a run of the mill pop star!!


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