Prime Cuts: Name, The Unmaking, Love You More
Nichole Nordeman recently made headlines when R&B guru Prince cut a version of her song "What If." Yet, this is not the first time in Nordeman's storied career where she has extend her influence beyond the narrow confines of CCM. While many of her peers were contend in just dropping their little album projects perennially, Nordeman knows no boundaries. In 2011, Nordeman created a concept album for Zondervan's "The Story" campaign. On this double disc collection, Nordeman wrote 17 new songs based on first person narratives of the Biblical characters; they were then recorded by some of CCM's top-tiered artists including Amy Grant, Michael W. Smith and Darlene Zschech. Ten years after her solo studio album "Brave," Nordeman is finally back. But "The Unmaking" is an EP with a mere 6 tracks, which is a disappointment to fans who have waited this long.
Despite the EP's brevity, "The Unmaking" is worth every second of it. The title cut "The Unmaking" underscores a lesson often bereft in our modern prayers. While many often plead for God to save us from life's trials, "The Unmaking" speaks of how such are the most fertile times for God to nurture our faith. Partnering with Plumb in terms of vocals and song writing is "Not to Us." The song bears all the imprints we have come to love about Plumb: the dramatic pauses, the soaring chorus, and the ethereal synth-driven interludes. "Name" is evidence of why of her peers clamour to record Nordeman's songs. Instead of recycling through the platitudes of clichéd phrases, the popish "Name" flourishes with lots of soul searching lines with the favorite being: "Do not ask the shadows. The Light of the world knows your name."
Likewise, the string-laden ballad "Love You More" is literally soaked in Scripture. This ode for holiness consists of so many lines echoing the narratives of Scripture that you can't help but be drawn to the call of Jesus in Scripture. With the guitar twitches of the nylons strings of the guitar, the stripped down acoustic sounding "Slow Down" also showcases Nordeman's gorgeous use of her falsetto. Though one would prefer a full album rather than a 6-track EP after a 10-year hiatus, "The Unmaking" doesn't disappoint. It is shinning lodestar in Nordeman's illustrious career testifying to what a thoughtful and deeply devotional writer Nordeman is.