Prime Cuts: Grace, Grace, Oh My Soul, Abiding
Overall Grade: 4/5
Some worship records are loud, rock-oriented and grandiose. Whilst others are contemplative, reflective and soulful. Ben and Noelle Kilgore's debut EP for Integrity Music falls into the latter category. Partnering with one half of All Sons and Daughters' David Leonard who co-wrote all the 6 songs with this husband/wide duo, the EP follows a similar sound not dissimilar from that of All Sons and Daughters'. This means all the songs here are meditative worship ballads enriched by the contrasting sounds of Ben's country-rock grits (reminisce of Eric Church) with Noelle's mellifluous soprano (calling to mind Taranda Greene). "A Resting Place," in this regard, lives up to its titular: this is an album that brings us to the feet of Jesus in tranquil worship.
"Grace, Grace" brims with the greatest potential as a radio single. Featuring an engaging tune that gives exposition to the meaning of grace, "Grace Grace" deserves to be heard and digested. Nevertheless, the hook of the chorus, bears a striking resemblance to Michael W. Smith's "Grace." After "Grace, Grace," the remains 5 cuts are all pensive ballads. "Oh My Soul" finds Ben at his vocal best. Imbuing all his emotions into this ballad, Ben testifies to what Jesus does to us when we find in him "a resting place."
Be prepared to be blown away by the gorgeous harmonies of Ben and Noelle on the Southern-Gospel-ish "Abiding." "He Made Me, He Loves Me," which moves along on a snail's pace, is minimalistic. Other than a sparse piano and some augmented strings, the song focuses on the intimacy of the couple's voices. The pace decelerates even more with "Draw Me Close," which sounds like a lullaby.
One is not sure what the purpose of this EP is. If these songs are made to be sung in churches, these songs are far too introspective. Some of them are so dragged out that the melody become too diffused for an average congregation to latch on. But if these songs are meant for one's personal devotion, then they really pass muster. This album is not for the hurried and the impatient. Rather, for those who want to quietly sit at the feet of jesus and soak in His goodness, this EP excels with flying colors.