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Jesus Culture “Love Has a Name” Album Review

Jesus Culture

Prime Cuts: Flood the Earth (Featuring Katie Torwalt), Love Has a Name (Featuring Kim Walker-Smith), Anything Can Happen (Featuring Chris Quilala)

Overall Grade: 4/5

If there is an adjective that best describes Jesus Culture's brand new live album, it's the word "big."  This is an enormous effort: if you get the deluxe version, you get a whopping 16 new tracks.  Timewise, the deluxe package clocks in at one hour and forty three minutes, it's almost 2 hours of worship music.  If bulk is the criteria of utility, you are definitely getting your money's worth.  While some bands try to squeeze their songs into the three and a half minute mark, here you will find songs stretching right into the two digit mark, with the song "Fresh Outpouring" being the champion, clocking in at close to fourteen minutes. Big also are the names that front the lead vocals of these 16 songs.  Regular stalwarts like Chris Quilala and matriarch Kim Walker-Smith each takes the center-microphone on 5 tracks each, with other Jesus Culture signees such as Derek Johnson, Bryan Torwalt, Katie Torwalt and Chris McClarney each tackling a song each.      

"Love Has a Name" is the much anticipated follow-up to he group's 2016 highly impactful album, "Let It Echo," which debuted at No. 16 on the Billboard Top Albums chart. Jesus Culture music has continued to create worship anthems for their local congregation as well as for those around the world, but it is at their church home that they experience these songs first during the writing and recording process.

Big also is the theme of the record.  For this record, Jesus Culture has taken the conscious effort, not to put any scaffolds to what God can do.  This is most perspicuously expounded in the Chris Quilala-led power ballad "Anything Can Happen."   In fact, the song is so representative of the record that it should have better served as the album's title cut.  Ready to let God work in His grand and powerful ways are the faith-building Kim Walker-Smith-led "Let Our Faith Become as Mountains" and Katie Torwalt's gorgeous "Flood the Earth."  Of note also is Chris Quilala's EDM-influenced "Weight of Heaven."  If you want to feel the full force of God's magnificent power, let this song drench you in holy awe.

Speaking of big, Jesus Culture's Kim Walker-Smith places her booming voice to great effect on the anthemic title track "Love Has a Name."  However, clocking in at 10 minutes, the song could have benefitted from being a little terser.  Desperation Band's Jon Egan makes a special appearance on the deluxe version by offering a passionate version of his signature tune "Make a Way."  Nevertheless, this album, like a big meal, needs time to digest.  In the first few listens, the songs tend to blend one into another from power ballads to polished pop burners.  But for those who take the time to listen, the power in these 16 songs are right on transforming.     

 

 

Tags : Jesus Culture Kim Walker-Smith chris quilala jon egan desperation band jesus culture love has a name album review Jesus Culture new album jesus culture news bryan and katie torwalt derek johnson

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