Switchfoot - Learning To Breathe

Thursday 1st February 2001
Switchfoot - Learning To Breathe
Switchfoot - Learning To Breathe

RATING 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10
LABEL: Fierce! RTD1736
RRP: £13.00

Reviewed by Tony Cummings

The San Diego band's first two albums were good, if a tad inaccessible, but this is something else. Anthemic, gutsy, pop rock songs full of glorious layers of guitar play against dazzling examples of the producer's art, while singer Jon Foreman swoops across the polyrhythms with a passion only previously hinted at. The dense layers make the opener "I Dare You To Move" one of the most sonically thrilling rock excursions for years. Then there's the title track with a laconic vocal-cum-prayer as Jon purrs ("I'm finding that you and you alone can break my prayer") with the same kind of haunting atmosphere that permeates the best of Jars Of Clay. Lyrics throughout avoid the twin pitfalls of oblique obscurity and shallow sloganeering, deftly making apposite observations on abandonment to God ("Playing For Keeps"), the banality of culture obsession ("Poparazzi") and the mysterious dimensions of grace ("The Economy Of Mercy"). Literate songs, fine rock arrangements, breathtaking production from Charlie Peacock and Jacquire King (five songs each) and a clear demonstration as to why Britain's brightest new Christian label would want to sign up this American three-piece.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

Interested in reviewing music? Find out more here.

Sample Track Listing:
1. I Dare You To Move [Listen]
2. Learning To Breathe [Listen]
4. Love Is The Movement [Listen]

This track data is supplied by the Cross Rhythms CD/DVD review library. Please note that CD tracks may vary according to release region or product version.

Reader Comments

Posted by Mark Lopez in Lewiston, ME @ 16:12 on May 22 2015

First, love the Crossrhythms site--you guys do a fantastic job of reviewing and interviewing Christian artists.
Second, I first became a fan of Switchfoot with "Beautiful Letdown." What a breath of fresh air they were (are). And as I often do, once I get into a band, I start to research their back catalogue. I've only listened to this album a couple times, but it's interesting to see where/how they developed musically and production-wise. I look at this record as their last performance in AAA ball before moving to the majors---and they were tearing it up even then!

The opinions expressed in the Reader Comments are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms.

Add your comment

We welcome your opinions but libellous and abusive comments are not allowed.

We are committed to protecting your privacy. By clicking 'Send comment' you consent to Cross Rhythms storing and processing your personal data. For more information about how we care for your data please see our privacy policy.


Connect with Cross Rhythms by signing up to our email mailing list

A Step Change...
Cross Rhythms Media Training Centre
Artists & DJs A-Z
# A B C D E F G H I J K L M
N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z #
Or keyword search


Intercession Room
Care for other people and shake heaven in our Intercession Room