Life, God, Techonology, and Randomness

Category: Music

“Excellent” Propaganda – a review of excellence

Marriage, divorce, creation, evolution, slavery, dogma, Islam, Egyptians and science; these are just some of the hot topics that the most recent effort from Propaganda touches on in his newest album Excellent, no  forgiveness required for asking

You would be hard pressed to find a better word to title this album as it is in a nut-shell, Excellent. In a world full of overproduction, auto-tune and sampling this stands above the rest in my recent memory. The beats — simple, the lyrics — thought inducing and the questions posed and left debated hit hard while focusing our thoughts both toward God and toward the world that we live in currently.

Throughout the duration Propaganda switches seamlessly from Spoken Word to rap and back with no noticeable change of pace. It’s the first time I’ve heard it done so well and it honestly leaves you feeling a bit taken aback by the simplicity of the delivery combined with the simplicity of the beat. From the beginning track to the last there is a story told (one worth listening to) that points to the struggles that we all have in life and in being a Christian. He takes us to a place where we are often afraid to go and leaves you feeling welcomed to the discussion without feeling embarrassed for having similar thoughts.

To be succinct I’ll just say this: in a world full of albums that speak of nothing but self it would be a disservice to not grab this album. Not to mention the album can be gotten for free here or through iTunes. Set aside an hour of your life and really just listen to it…I know I don’t regret it.


Yet another reason the church is still relevant, alive, and kicking!

I had the privelage of attending part of the 7 Tour over this past weekend. My amazing wife bought us both tickets and I couldn’t be happier with the experience. That concert in and of itself is the reason for this post.

Earlier this month I wrote, a post, about why the church is relevant in today’s day and age. The post was a call to arms for the youth of America to be involved in “church” more actively. While I was jamming with John Mark McMillan, Gungor, Chris August, and DC*B, as well as my wife a memory hit me. You see the concert was at Liberty University which is where I went to school and the thing was almost filled (save for the seats behind the stage) with people there ready to worship Christ. I was spoiled by attending that University as 3 times weekly that arena was filled with people actively ready to worship and I hadn’t been around that many people of faith in awhile.

By the time Crowder hit the stage the place was very loud and ready to rock. That band then led worship for an hour. Yes it was a rock concert and yes I paid to go to it. But the fact remains that at moments the sound of the crowd as a whole literally drowned out the sound of the band and you could hear the corporate voice over all the loudness singing as one body to our Lord. It was amazing; at one point David Crowder (while transitioning instruments which is always me) said:

Man there is no place better to be than in a room filled with people worshipping God…no better place to be than right here.

He was right. This is why it’s so important for the church to remain relevant. Scripture is filled with the importance of congregational worship and it’s not always at a “church”. It’s in your car, bathroom, closet, and life and it’s there at all times.

Don’t be afraid to sing/shout at the top of your lungs and drown everything out!

Sing loud and sing proud…to heck with singing on key!

Gungor: Ghosts Upon The Earth Album Review

I first heard of Michael Gungor when I was attending Liberty University and he was an unknown. He had me hooked almost instantly. When the man played guitar I was captivated (especially Doxology) and he and his band still continues to do this to me. He and his cadre of band members recently came out with a new album titled Ghosts Upon The Earth. If you don’t feel like reading any further know this..JUST GO BUY IT. It really is that good.

Most people became aware of Gungor when their last album Beautiful Things hit and that album was a smash. It is a hard act to follow but I love the way that these guys have done it! If I had to describe this album it would be…epically sweeping. It ebbs and flows through honest emotions and uplifting arrangements. It is not just the arrangement of songs that sound good but there is an actual story going on throughout each track and each is unique in the instruments that it uses (for instance flutes and other instruments you haven’t thought of since grammar school). The album is a balance of the beauty of creation as well as the back and forth between the love affair that God has with His creation and in turn our response to Him, both good and bad.

Tracks like Church Bells and Brother Moon may be the only ones that I would think might ever be played on the radio but instead more of an experiment; I love that about this album. It’s more a testament to the fact that sometimes the message of the music is more important than album CCM rankings! Others such as Wake Up Sleeper speak to the current state of the Church in society as it is now.

It’s hard to pick out “must listen!” tracks on this album because any one song (while good) doesn’t have the same weight without the album as a whole. But here they favs:

  • This is not the End: Gives hope for the life after this!
  • Crags and Clay: a beautiful story of Creation and Majesty
  • When Death Dies: speaks to the glory that we shall recieve when death dies
  • Ezekiel: an anthem as the the current state of the church (similar to this recent post!)

That said, this album is not something that you want to listen to lightly but instead lean back and remove the other distractions and just listen and enjoy. It seems to make you lose track of time and is fulfilling. Gungor has really outdone themselves and they are beginning to remind me of another band that I absolutely love; the David Crowder Band. That band also seems to reinvent and push their sound and song writing abilities with each record. I’m sure that this is a skill that will be honed even further as they are currently touring the land together on the 7 Tour.

In short YOU REALLY SHOULD Go and get this!

Gungor can be found here:

The Glory of Creation

I live in a beautiful part of the United States (arguably one of the most beautiful) down here in Central Virginia, nestled close to the Blue Ridge Parkway. This time Read the rest of this entry »

Shadow Proves the Sunshine

Switchfoot is an amazing band and their lead singer, Jon Foreman, is straight money lyrically.  They have this one song though that gets me called The Shadow Proves the Sunshine.

The lyric that gets me is part of the chorus

We are crooked souls trying to stay up straight,
Dry eyes in the pouring rain
The shadow proves the sunshine
The shadow proves the sunshine

Here’s the deal. We are all born crooked souls and many people try their whole life to walk a straight path. That’s easy enough to see day in and day out. My question to you is this: Does the shadow prove the sunshine (or in other words…does sin prove grace/salvation)?

Let me know

Here’s the song for your reference:

Happiness! There’s Grace!

So my 2 year old was running around the house this morning singing the Chorus to this song. Praise God….

Here it is enjoy!!

Switchfoot – Vice Verses Album Review

I picked this album up a few days ago (thanks Spotify!) and I’ve been quite impressed. Is it the best Switchfoot has to offer? Could they have done better? Worth the money? Let’s find out… Read the rest of this entry »

Best Christian Songs You’ve Never Heard Of

Recently I stumbled upon a web app called This thing is amazing and it’s introduced me to music that I long since forgot existed. This has had a side-effect on me that I hadn’t expected; it has made me pour back through my older music collection and I have been blown away, which I spoke of recently.

Here is a small list I have compiled of some of the best songs you may have never heard of. I hope that you enjoy these songs as much as I do.

Six String Rocketeer by Daily Planet:

This song does multiple things.

  1. Has a great arrangement
  2. Talks about Sgt. Pepper and the Piano Man (can’t fail there!)
  3. Mixes that into a song about God as well

That’s some talent.

This is the best video I could find: 

PSA: This band no longer exists but its lead singer, Jesse Butterworth, leads worship at a church in Seattle and is amazing.

How Deep the Father’s Love for Us: Skillet

This song is a remake of a classic with a nice contemporary arrangement. Skillet’s front man sings it beautifully and it’s melody will stay with you all the day long. And really who doesn’t love an old hymn sung in a haunting and cool way? I know I do!

Skip to about 3:45 for the music if you want to skip his intro.

All My Fountains:  Chris Tomlin/Passion Band

This song has grown on me. A friend from church asked me about it and I had never really listened to it. It’s one of those songs that starts differently and I almost always skipped past it. DON’T DO THAT! Do not commit the foul that I did. Listen to it once a day for three days and I guarantee you will fall in love with it.

Live Forever by Drew Holcomb and the Neighboors

This song is just freaking awesome. It’s so laid back and the lyrics are just perfect when your in a easy going kind of mood. It takes me back to the days when music was more simple and less technology was involved in the making of it. Almost a Dylan(ish) flavor to it.

This is by no means a complete list. If there are songs I need to include that you just love let me know in the comments. Always glad to listen to new music!

Attics are Amazing

Attics, my friend, are the new man’s best friend. Move over dog/cat/_____(insert here), attics are on the move and they are coming soon to a home near you? Sometimes a loft might due if you live in a townhome…Lord knows I’ve had my share of those.

I’ll get back to the point. I recently was looking for my backpack from high school/college to take on a youth trip and couldn’t find it anywhere. I looked under beds in closets and finally realized it might be in the attic. So I trudged out to the shed and got my little (too short really) ladder and hoisted myself up into the attic. My first thought was one of disgust; I mean who organized all this stuff? They should be fired! Then I realized it was me and re-hired myself and began the chore of thinking which brown box looked more promising to hold my bag.

None ended up having it but I did find all my old CD’s! I started listening to them yesterday and instantly fell back in love with bands that I had long since forgotten even existed. Decades of music lost from my memory has now been restored. Some cherished Praise and Worship from my man Robbie Seay, Circadian Rhythm, and not to mention some underground Liberty U Bands that you had to be there to understand. The emotion cup has runneth over!!

Once was lost has now been found! Has this ever happened to anyone else?

As for the bag it was found. I did what I should have done from the beginning of it all; called my wife and she immediately told me where it was at.

Pirating your Salvation Song

Remember that one song? You heard it and instantly, BAAM, it was in your head. The impact that it left is felt many years after. You remember it the way you remember things as important as say..9-11, Osama going down (way to go Seals!). That happened to me and I feel so guilty about it. Read the rest of this entry »