Andrew Peterson’s latest album is a fine mix of acoustic, pop and folk - although he experiments with many other styles too. You may not recognise his name, but Andrew has been making critically acclaimed records since 1996.
Track 1, Come Back Soon, opens with a concoction of interesting sounds. It’s mellow and understated but the slow start is just as attention grabbing as any power metal opener. Loudness doesn’t always equal energy or intensity.
Full of religious imagery, the song talks about angels on guard before sudden drum runs are heard alongside the perfect harmonies.
“But we cannot read these angels tongues, we cannot stare at the burning son,” Sings Andrew, as his voice soars with a cry of, “Deliver us O Lord”. While the lyrics often speak of God, it's not typical worship or even typical 'Christian' music; ensuring that fans will be debating the meaning behind many of his lyrics for months to come.
That, of course, can only be a good thing and Andrew understands; his fans would rather spend time digging into a strange lyric than hear yet another cliché.
The 38 year old is a master of dynamics. The recording continually rises and falls. Light For The Lost Boy will surely go down as one of the year’s greatest musical roller-coasters.
Second track, The Cornerstone, is a little more straightforward. Simpler production and instrumentation results in a tune that’s easy to connect with, even on the first listen.
“You’ve been a mystery since the moment that I met you, you never move but I can never seem to catch you, the cornerstone...” Andrew sings, as a dirty electric guitar riff – enhanced by masses of reverb - breaks in. The song ends with Andrew singing about the floods coming up and the rain coming down. What deeper meaning is Andrew singing about? Don't ask me!
The Voice of Jesus is a beautiful piano ballad with a great original melody and lyrics that speak to the heart.
The Ballad of Jody Baxter contains impressive acoustic guitar play from the experienced musician, while Day by Day picks up the tempo for a straightforward pop tune about “children of eternity - on the run from entropy”.
Carry The Fire is an intense yet inspiring song with all the hallmarks of a stand-out track. Intelligent lyrics, plenty of instruments and an unusual and surprising arrangement make it a joy to listen to.
The album finishes with an exceptional song, possibly inspired by the words of Dante Gabriel Rossetti: “The worst moment for the atheist is when he is really thankful and has nobody to thank.”
This is a stunning release that will make you think as well as entertain you. Andrew has once again proved that he is the master of deep and thoughtful - though usually chilled out, Christian music.
Listeners will find lyrics like “you don’t need to prove yourself, you're already mine,” on the track Rest Easy, genuinely reassuring. The meaning of other songs and lyrics may be veiled, at least temporarily, but that's what makes this recording so much fun to listen to.
Light For The Lost Boy is great music, plain and simple – just the way it should be.
Rating: 9 out of 10
July 13th, 2012 - Posted & Written by Sam Hailes