STYLE: Roots/Acoustic RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 82625-15830 LABEL: ION 46902 FORMAT: CD Album RELEASE DATE: 2009-09-01 RRP: £9.99
Reviewed by Anthony Longville
Derek Webb is back, but things have changed. The former Caedmon's Call member has achieved critical acclaim with a string of solo releases, beginning with "She Must And Shall Go Free', which ironically was considered controversial because of strong language - presumably the use of the word 'Whore' in "Wedding Dress" - a hard hitting but timely critique of the church. No stranger then to controversy. With this release Webb has excelled himself. Censored by his record label this is the CD where Webb says on his MySpace site "It seems I've finally found the line beyond which my label can support me, and apparently I've crossed it." This retail release is one track short of a full album, with "What Matters More" considered too controversial for the release. The full version is only available from the artist's website where the offending track is also available for free download. The track, which is a criticism of the Church's attitudes towards gays, contains the word s**t, to convey the artist's distaste at the time spent on dealing with the gay issue compared to acting on the huge number of people starving to death in the world. Some may remember Tony Campolo sparking controversy years ago with almost identical words. But that isn't all. As I said, things have changed. Those who have Derek Webb firmly planted in the roots/acoustic category had better rethink, for this album is a sonic revolution. Electronic sounds take over the house. The voice is still recognisable but the overall musical landscape gives it a different quality. It's all much more experimental. All tracks are co-written with Joshua Moore. Those who are used to Webb's lyrics smacking them straight between the eyes are in for a surprise too, as the lyrical approach is much less direct and that listener is going to have to play a greater part in unravelling the meanings. Having said that they still pack a punch as in the aforementioned track or "Freddie Please" or "Becoming A Slave". If you are prepared to be musically and spiritually challenged this is for you.
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Perhaps best known for his critically acclaimed I See Things Upside Down, Dove Award-winning singer/songwriter/social activist Derek Webb has been igniting honest dialogue and turning perceptions upside down for some time.
A founding member of the popular band Caedmon’s Call, he’s a rare artist that can marry the good news of the Gospel with the dirt of real life.
Derek Webb is at it again – stepping on toes and challenging the church on tough realities including poverty, war and racism in his new release, Stockholm Syndrome.
This provocative CD – already abuzz over the internet – is a work Webb describes as his most important record yet.