Reviewed by Tony Cummings
Every now and again you hear something that comes as a breath of fresh air. This album is one such breath. This is The Longing's debut album although to listen to it one could easily believe that this four piece band from Nashville, USA, have been creating great music together for years. Truth is that Jason Ingram, the band's frontman and main songwriter, has been around making CDs as a solo while theother band members are seasoned pros. "Every song on this album grew from a broken and contrite heart," says Ingram. "Over the years, I've become more aware of my absolute inadequacy to approach God, much less lead others there. What's amazing is how God accepts our worship, broken as it may be, and actually delights in it. That truth leaves me with a longing to create something beautiful for him." You can almost hear that longing in the delivery of each song which all come across as honest and passionate. The album starts to roll right from the opening melody of the first track, "Heal This Land". From then on in it's hard to find one song that lowers the tempo, even though some are more gentle and others more rock-orientated. The only problem I find (if it can be called a problem) is that each track is so powerful that it soon replaces the last as a nominee for the repeat button. Usually on a CD there are one or two crackers that the listener would be drawn back to but on this album each and every track is as good as the last. If I had to choose a few favourites then maybe "Salvation Songs", "Here's My Heart", a few great versions of classic hymns "To God Be the Glory" and "My Jesus I Love Thee" and to close "Eyes On You". Also included are a few guest appearances from Christy Nockels of Watermark and John Ellis, Tree63. James Ingram says, "The vision of The Longing belongs to God. Our desire is to reach God's ears to please him with our offering. If the music moves others to do the same, that too will be God's hand. Our dedication is not to the band, the music or any kind of vision. Our dedication is to Jesus; our vision, his vision." Well said, I'm happy to report that the vision is happening as it did it for me. The best new thing I've heard for a long time.
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