STYLE: Pop RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 154199-22931 LABEL: Integrity 0000768642320 FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1 RELEASE DATE: 2015-02-16 RRP: £13.00
Reviewed by Ian Homer
This groundbreaking duo featuring David Gungor (the brother of renowned worshipper Michael Gungor) and John Arndt have been making steady progress with four independent albums and two EPs and are now given a big push to expand their following further by Integrity Music. Michael Gungor has described their music as "musically rich, theologically brave and emotionally honest," and this is what it is. Undoubtedly the strongest offering is the radio-friendly eponymous title track, which like many on this album builds gradually to a crescendo; in this case starting with a plucked double bass and John Arndt on keys. The hook-line, "When I look into the face of my enemy I see my brother" is guaranteed to stay long with you. The following track "Now And At The Hour", previously released on the independent self-titled live album, has the potential to find a place in the repertoire of many churches' worship teams while others, I would suggest, are more for contemplation at home. The acoustic fingerpicking by David is coupled with light and airy vocal harmonies with a string quartet to round things off. "Breathe", another mid-tempo ballad, opens with solo piano then uses the strings in a way that is reminiscent of '80s electronic band Ultravox. All in all there is much to commend this devotional collection, however I would have liked to have heard more variance in structure and tempo and a bit more care on the choice of instrumentation and delivery on the loudest passages. But clearly The Brilliance have something fresh to offer the worshipping Church.
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The Brilliance is made up of David Gungor and John Arndt who, together with a selection of musicians including cellists, violinists and rhythm players, create a worship music style that is best described as rich, theologically brave and emotionally honest. As independent artists they have built a significant fanbase with their songs and tours around the Advent and Lent seasons.