Firing It Up (Again)

After an unscheduled sabbatical, I’m back at it; making new shows and getting old ones back online, on in some cases online for the first time. It is going to be a very lengthy process, as I’m “remastering” the old episodes for better sound quality and doing so plus reuploading the now larger files is going to take a good chunk of time. I’m also renaming the shows, losing the silly Roman numerals and relabeling the Cephas Hour on BlackLight Radio shows as episodes while keeping the Cephas Hour of Praise shows labeled as volumes. This will hopefully alleviate any question as to what is what.

Anyway, as said this is a work in progress and will be one for quite a while. Please bear with, and thank you!

Cephas Hour on BlackLight Radio
Volume 158
Air Date: April 5, 2020

No, really – two new shows in two weeks!

We Draw The Line AD
I Don’t Need Your Fantasy Gold Frankincense and Myrrh
Love Comes Down Resurrection Band
Surrender The Call
Forever Now A Crown Shelly Moore
Preacher Man Lenny LeBlanc
In Every Cathedral Glass Harp
20 Loves (One With Promise) Veil
If You’re Listening The Choir
Deep Adam Again
The Stand The Alarm
Gloria U2
The Lust, The Flesh, The Eyes, And The Pride Of Life 77s
Waterdogs The Prayer Chain
Solo Flight (excerpt) Crumbächer

Cephas Hour of Praise
Volume 41
Air Date: April 5, 2020

Easter Song 2nd Chapter of Acts
Be Thou My Vision Kemper Crabb
Jesus, Friend Of Sinners Casting Crowns
Lord Of The Past Bob Bennett
I Can Only Imagine MercyMe
God Of Wonders Mac Powell with Cliff and Danielle Young
Sweet Communion Karen Lafferty
Defender Kelsi Craig
Thy Throne Oh God Kelly Willard
Holy 3 Kemper Crabb
Joy In The Journey Michael Card
I Need Thee Every Hour Michael Roe
Oh, Mary Don’t You Weep Mike Farris
God Moving Over The Face Of The Waters (excerpt) Moby

Cephas Hour on BlackLight Radio
Volume 157
Air Date: March 29, 2020

Tip-toeing back into your podcast world …

Anyway, kicking off this return with a terrific new song by Shelly Moore, plus a whole tasty cornucopia of favorites. Thanks for waiting for me to get it back together and get a new show out.

Forever Now A Crown Shelly Moore
Way With Words Crumbächer
Say The Word Whiteheart
Mercy Will Prevail The Choir
Jesus Wept Daniel Amos
Caught In An Unguarded Moment 77s
Devotion Undercover
Rebel Rock Altar Boys
Morningstar Allies
Dig Adam Again
Celebration Day Tykus
Mask Of The Great Deceiver Kerry Livgren
Solo Flight (excerpt) Crumbächer

Cephas Hour of Praise
Volume 40
Air Date: March 29, 2020

Took me long enough, now didn’t it.

40 U2
Drifting Too Far From The Shore The Garcia Project
Crushing Hand The Lost Dogs
Jesus Puts The Song In Our Hearts Love Song
Silent Witness Bob Ayala
More Power To Ya Petra
Diamonds/One Way Larry Norman
Call Unto Me Bridget Willard
Add Up The Wonders Michael Omartian
Clouds, Rain, Fire Pam Dwinell
Clouds The Choir
Love Song For A Savior Jars of Clay
All The Losers Win DeGarmo & Key
Peace (John 14:27) Derri Daugherty
God Moving Over The Face Of The Waters (excerpt) Moby

Cephas Hour on BlackLight Radio
Episode 156
Podcast only

Here is the second podcast-only show with no voiceovers, only music. It is an all-Choir show. Because why not. Enjoy!

Shadow Of The Cross The Choir
What You Think I Am The Choir
Mercy Lives Here The Choir
Birds Bewildered The Choir
That Melancholy Ghost The Choir
She’s Alright The Choir
If You’re Listening The Choir
We All Know The Choir
Salamander The Choir
Amazing The Choir
Mercy Will Prevail The Choir
We’ve Got The Moon The Choir
A Sentimental Song The Choir
Beautiful Scandolus Night The Choir
Solo Flight (excerpt) Crumbächer

Cephas Hour on BlackLight Radio
Episode 155
Podcast only

A funny thing happened today while I was rummaging around my computer getting things back up and running on this site. I discovered I had two episodes of CHOBR for which the music was all done, but there were no voiceovers by yours truly. I had apparently recorded them this past December, but for whatever reason never completed them. Interesting. Anyway, rather than finish them normally I’ve decided to make them both music-only episodes and place them here as podcast only special episodes. A thank you to those among you who have stuck with me during these past several months.

This particular show is all Undercover. Enjoy!

Is Anyone Thirsty Undercover
God Rules Undercover
Medicine Undercover
Sea Of Tranquility Undercover
I’m Just A Man Undercover
The Way Of The Rose Undercover
World Come Crashing Down Undercover
Purple Flower Undercover
Holy Holy Holy Undercover
I Am The Resurrection Undercover
The Eyes Of Love Undercover
Land Of Luxury Undercover
Time Undercover
Devotion Undercover
Alma Mater (A Cappella) (excerpt) Crumbächer

“Bloodshot” by The Choir Deeply Satisfies

(This post originally appeared on Goldfish and Clowns.)

It’s difficult to envision veteran Christian alt rockers The Choir being in the company of country artists back when it was barely out of its teens, a time finding artists such as The Carter Family, Bob Willis, and Bill Monroe routinely crisscrossing the country planting seeds of a genre they created. Also, it’s not that Bloodshot, The Choir’s new album, is in any sense a country album. However, there is a common thread; more on this in a bit.

Throughout its career The Choir has with graceful ease traversed between atmospheric and near avant-garde, musically built around Derri Daugherty’s sometimes dreamy and at other moments razor slice guitar while Steve Hindalong’s lyrics have purposefully plumbed relationships, life fragments, and faith through a poet’s eyes. In this respect Bloodshot is no different than its predecessors. The Choir have for decades made extremely even albums, never failing to deliver something solid wrapped within textural diversity. Bloodshot, however, has some twists revealing Messrs. Daugherty and Hindalong, plus Tim Chandler on bass and Dan Michaels on assorted reed instruments, are still more than capable of bringing something new to the turntable.

Bloodshot is in many ways the most straightforward album The Choir has ever recorded. Not that the music is an exercise in formulaic commercial ear candy; rather, the songs are simpler without being simplistic: more direct, more immediately accessible. Daugherty frequently employs strummed chords as a foundation upon which to bounce his effects-rich electric work, using it to create far more guitar interplay than is present in most Choir efforts. Even when there is but one guitar present, Daugherty accomplishes the rare feat of creating multiple sound swirls dancing around each other, always perfectly meshed within the song in lieu of drawing attention to themselves alone.

The album also differs lyrically from the majority of prior albums in that it is far more heavily relationship-focused. Not that faith is being dismissed, but on Bloodshot Hindalong is at his most playful and celebratory of love between two people. This is the album you play for those who deride Christian music as bereft of romance.

Where the album harkens back to country’s emerging years is in its songs at their core. They are solid, uncomplicated, and tuneful; the essence of country long before it went cosmopolitan. It is not difficult to hear the compositions and picture them coming out of a dome-shaped AM radio, performed by a small acoustic ensemble in some station’s studio designed for live music. Whether this is intentional or unplanned is something only The Choir can answer, but regardless it is there.

It’s easy, and sadly all too common, for an established band to trot out the same ol’ same ol’ album after album, knowing this will satisfy the vast majority of their audience. The Choir think and act differently. Bloodshot isn’t a radical departure, but rather a superb exploration of songs and sounds fused together, creating a record that’s memorable for all the right reasons.

The album is available for preorder on iTunes.