STYLE: Rock RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 131263-19771 LABEL: Essential 083061094621 FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1 RELEASE DATE: 2012-11-06 RRP: £9.99
Reviewed by Lins Honeyman
The latest offering from the veteran Southern rockers sees renowned producer Brendan O'Brien (Bruce Springsteen amongst countless others) in the driving seat and the band in top form. Proceedings kick off with the explosive "Hit Me Like A Bomb" and the lighter pop of "Kicking And Screaming" which set the scene for a varied album chock full of the kind of quality songs you would expect from a band of Third Day's calibre. As ever, it is lead singer and chief lyricist Mac Powell's unmistakable vocals that steal the show with tracks such as the tender "You Are My Everything" and the gutsy blues stomper "The Victory" showcasing the man's ability to sing at both ends of the vocal spectrum. Elsewhere, the rest of the band shine with the indie-tinged "Time's Running Out On Me" which contains a memorable contribution from guitarist Mark Lee whilst the '80s retro sound of "For The Rest Of My Life" confirms that Third Day are out to be creatively diverse whilst not forsaking their own distinctive sound. As ever, Powell's lyrics are God-centred and worshipful, numbers such as "Your Love Is Like A River" and "I Want To Believe In You" point to Jesus as the rock amidst troubled waters and typify an album of songs that portray the struggles and rewards of having faith in Christ with refreshing realism. The band bravely close with an augmented version of the Sunday School favourite "Morning Has Broken" - pleasingly containing more than a nod to Cat Stevens' definitive version - to wrap up an exemplary release from one of CCM's premier bands.
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There comes a time in every artist’s career where they need to re-imagine, re-invigorate, and dream it all over again. For Third Day, that time was in the autumn of 2011.
Their touring was never better, their album Move was successful, the fans were super-engaged, yet they felt it was time to shake things up. As they prepared to write and record their next album, Miracle, the band hired legendary producer Brendan O’Brien (Bruce Springsteen, Pearl Jam, The Fray, Train) to help them forge a new sound. From the opening track, Hit Me Like A Bomb, it is clear that Third Day mean business when they say they want to bring something new to the table.
Musically, there are sounds that have never been on a Third Day album including layered guitars, layered harmonies, and sing-a-long gang vocals. Music styles range from pulsating rock to acoustic pop-rock, yet the classic Third Day sound everyone loves is still there but refreshed and rejuvenated. Lyrically, the themes are relevant for our culture today. Songs about pressing on in difficult times (Your Love Is Like A River, I Need A Miracle), praying for change (Hit Me Like A Bomb, Believe In Something), and hope for better times (The Victory, Take Me Back).