Cephas Hour
Episode 53
Release Date: March 30, 2022

Continuing to explore songs and/or artists seldom if ever played here.

Lead Me To Reason AD
Time Phil Keaggy
Calling On Jerusalem
Graveyard Of Identities Gold Frankincense & Myrrh
Take My Hand Veil Of Ashes
Slo Glo One Dead Artist Syndrome
The 10th Song Adam Again
In Our Waning Days Terry Scott Taylor
Film At 11 77s
Restore My Soul The Choir
Double Negative Steve Taylor and The Perfect Foil
Raging Of The Moon Whiteheart
Unraveling Shelly Moore

Cephas Hour
Episode 51
Release Date: March 17, 2022

Sorry, no leprechauns even though it’s St. Patrick’s Day. Instead, serious songs for a seriously besieged world in desperate need of Christ.

Can One Man Save The World Five For Fighting
Star All Together United
Standing In His Favor Backstage Revival
To The Ones Bringing Home
Judas Within Vector
Crazy Voice Oden Fong
Thief In The Night Cliff Richard
Sevens 77s
Time Undercover
The Woods The Choir
We Draw The Line AD
Raging Of The Moon Whiteheart
All You Lucky People Adam Again
Amazing Grace Five For Fighting

Cephas Hour
Episode Twenty-Eight
Release Date: October 8, 2021

An all-‘80s show.

¡Alarma! Daniel Amos
Ping Pong Over The Abyss 77s
Lie Down In The Grass Charlie Peacock
This Disco (Used To Be A Cute Cathedral) Steve Taylor
Celebration Day Tykus
We Draw The Line AD
Let The Kingdom Come Whiteheart
Rose-Colored Stained Glass Windows Petra
Aliens And Strangers DeGarmo & Key
Watch What You’re Doing Larry Norman
Someone To Hold On To The Choir
The Tenth Song Adam Again
And They Call It Love Veil of Ashes
Horrendous Disc Daniel Amos

Cephas Hour
Episode Twenty-Five
Release Date: September 5, 2021

Facing the death of loved ones. And dragons. The two are not connected.

Last Day Of My Life 2nd Chapter of Acts
With The Tired Eyes Of Faith Terry Scott Taylor
In Paradise (In Paradisum) Rachel Wilhelm
Grave Robber Petra
His Word Is Still His Promise Chuck Girard
Calling On You Stryper
Darkest Hour Undercover
They That Go Down To The Sea In Ships Kemper Crabb
Advent Suite John Michael and Terry Talbot
Sad Face The Choir
Lead Me To Reason AD
Genuine 77s
Forever Now A Crown Shelly Moore
I Plan, God Laughs Terry Scott Taylor

Cephas Hour
Episode Fifteen
Release Date: May 20, 2021

Commentary on not much of anything, instead letting the music do the talking. Continue reading “Cephas Hour
Episode Fifteen
Release Date: May 20, 2021″

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 charts with bands such as Yes, Emerson Lake & Palmer, Jethro Tull, and Kansas enjoying commercial if not critical success by seeking to interweave classical and avant-garde themes with rock‘n’roll’s rhythmic power.

Fast forward to 1985. Kerry Livgren, de facto leader of Kansas during its mid to late 1970s heyday and author of its two best known songs “Carry On Wayward Son” along with “Dust In The Wind”, was at something of an artistic/career crossroads. The band for which he was known was firmly in his rear view mirror yet alive once more; the following year saw it release Power which featured the top twenty hit “All I Wanted.” Meanwhile, his own band AD, whose lineup was replete with talent to burn, found itself sort-of on the Sparrow label, thus automatically relegated to the Christian rock ghetto, a place even the most fiercely devoted fans from secular days seldom knew existed. And, given how Livgren’s muse was utterly beyond the comprehension of most CCM fans worshipping at the altar of soft pop, he and his band barely registered in the music machine’s playground. Nevertheless, Livgren and company persevered as long as possible, along the way giving us 1985’s Art Of The State.

Art Of The State reminds me of an interview I watched several years ago with Les Claypool, bassist without peer best known for his band Primus. He was talking about the time when he auditioned, believe it or not, for the then-vacant bassist position with Metallica. He didn’t get the job. The interview then cut over to Metallica leader James Hetfield who didn’t even attempt to contain his roaring laughter as he noted about the entire matter, “He was too good for us!” In similar fashion, AD’s sophisticated melodies, arrangements, and lyrics were so far beyond the scope of 99.44% of mid-‘80s CCM it is little wonder why it made no marketplace impact.

The album lacks the standout, forever a mandatory staple hit à la the aforementioned “Carry On Wayward Son” or “Dust In The Wind.” It is filled with meaty inventiveness, be it the positive lilt of “Lead Us To Reason,” which should have been a hit but wasn’t, the apocalyptic grandeur of “The Fury,” and multiple stops in-between. While the overall sound was familiar to Kansas aficionados, Livgren and company declined to recycle his previous band, adding more group vocal punch and rhythm to the hooks. The instrumental excursions during songs were kept brief, sharp, and sweet. Art Of The State is still unmistakably and undeniably prog, but it’s prog purposefully trimmed down.

Livgren is still with us, working on new music. For those looking to find out what they missed while they were loading up on the latest Amy Grant and Michael W. Smith fan fodder, check out Art Of The State. It was, and is, state of the art.

The album is available on Kerry Livgren’s website.

Cephas Hour of Peace
Episode Sixteen
Air Date: November 8, 2020

Some musings on the illusionary Jesus (as opposed to the Real One), and the very real matter of depression.Continue reading “Cephas Hour of Peace
Episode Sixteen
Air Date: November 8, 2020″

Cephas Hour of Purpose
Episode Fifteen
Air Date: November 1, 2020

Did some archive digging for this one.Continue reading “Cephas Hour of Purpose
Episode Fifteen
Air Date: November 1, 2020″