Sandra McCracken - Desire Like Dynamite

Published Thursday 2nd January 2014
Sandra McCracken - Desire Like Dynamite
Sandra McCracken - Desire Like Dynamite

RATING 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 136836-21299
LABEL: Independent

Reviewed by Oscar Hyde

Nashville-based singer/songwriter McCracken has never received quite as much attention as her firebrand husband Derek Webb. Hopefully, that'll change with this album, which outshines all her previous efforts and (I think) is the best either of them has created. Sandra takes every pop sensibility she has and uses them all to explore some surprisingly deep theological ground. "Hourglass" floats over gloriously hopeful eschatology; "Gridlock" twists faux-doo-wop to confront emotional abuse; the gently relinquishing "Forgiveness", far from a simplistic paean, wrestles with the very real issues of letting go. The titular and gorgeously ethereal "Dynamite" powerfully proclaims "to change their will, you first must change their hearts" through a soupy musical fog. Even the inspirational opening track, "Go", is darkly cheerful, a twinkling small-scale subversion, minor chords acknowledging the difficulties, but remaining fairytale, featuring chimes and marimbas and trumpets (oh my!), as if Danny Elfman with a moral. Between all the marvellous studio flourishes and meaty theology are gorgeous phrases, such as mountains crying "like a child for their mother". This is an album rich in both words and music and I can see no competition for my favourite Christian album of 2013.

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