Classic Music Review

Looking Back: “Only Visiting This Planet” by Larry Norman

It’s impossible to objectively review Only Visiting This Planet by Larry Norman. Without this 1972 release, contemporary Christian music as we know it would not exist. It’s possible if not probable that CCM in some form would have emerged in the mid to late 1970s. But it would not have been the same. It would …

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Looking Back: “Art Of The State” by AD Proves No Good Artistic Deed Goes Unpunished

Strange as it may seem in this era of autotune and virtual instruments, there was a time in popular music when adventuresome artists were rewarded, at least occasionally, with something other than puzzled looks. No genre encapsulates this bygone age more than progressive rock, which for a time in the 1970s rode high on the …

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Looking Back: “Dig Here, Said the Angel” by Daniel Amos A Music Masterpiece

(This review originally ran in July of 2013 on examiner.com.) There’s good. There’s great. There’s brilliant. And then there’s instant timeless classic. “Dig Here, Said the Angel” by Daniel Amos is the latter, and then some. The band’s first release since 2001’s “Mr. Buechner’s Dream,” “Dig Here, Said the Angel” finds Terry Scott Taylor and …

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"Saved" by Bob Dylan

Looking Back: Is Bob Dylan’s “Saved” The Greatest Gospel Album Ever?

First, there was gospel and the blues; twin cousins each at best privately disavowing and usually publicly denouncing each other. Gospel was a group proclamation of salvation and eternal reward, a fervent celebration by its creators whose ofttimes sole hope in a land of freedom was freedom begrudgingly won not by the shedding of blood …

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Looking Back: “Bloodshot” by The Choir Deeply Satisfies

(This post originally appeared on Goldfish and Clowns in May of 2018.) It’s difficult to envision veteran Christian alt rockers The Choir being in the company of country artists back when the genre was barely out of its teens, a time finding artists such as The Carter Family, Bob Willis, and Bill Monroe routinely crisscrossing …

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Looking Back: Seventy Sevens “20 Years Gone” A Superb Compilation

(This review was originally published in December of 2015 on Examiner.com) As the traditional music industry’s business model transforms in the face of omnipresent streaming and decreasing physical product sales, one of this paradigm shift’s casualties is the greatest hits package. It had been a music industry staple that every year end would bring a …

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Looking Back: “Unraveling” by Shelly Moore Is A Treasure Waiting To Be Discovered

Although it may not appear to be the case, I am aware of music recorded after 1994, the year the Christian music industry and I bid a not-so fond farewell to one another. While I couldn’t identify most current popular Christian artists if I tried, I am at least aware of a few. I like …

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Looking Back: “The Roar of Love” by The 2nd Chapter of Acts Remains A Sadly Underappreciated Masterpiece

One of the more lamentable traits of contemporary Christian music, as it moved from its 1960s counterculture roots into a more widely acceptable cosmopolitan form, has been record labels doing all they can to push new or existing artists into soundalike or even lookalike copies of recently successful secular artists or artistic genres. Examples abound: …

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