Prime Cuts: Keep Me, My King is Known by Love, Stones
Overall Grade: 4.25/5
If "20/20" denotes vision of perfect visual sharpness, this new record clearly captures vignettes of the Gospel unfolding in the happenstances of life. From the overcrowded church putting out extra folding chairs ("I See Revival") to a modern reenactment of of the woman suffering from guilt in John 8 ("Stones"), these songs allow us to "see" the power of the Gospel in action. Therefore, listening to this album is like seeing a scintillating documentary of how God's Spirit can change the lives of ordinary folks like you and me. Good things indeed come to those who wait. It has been eight years have passed since the Crabb Family last release a full-length studio album. "20/20," which is released under the Daywind logo, features 10 newly recorded songs, coming from some of the best scribes in the genre, including Tony Wood, Kenna West, Jimmy Years, Sue C. Smith among other luminaries.
"I See Revival," opens off the set, springing with a bright and upbeat disposition. Describing how a revival has swept through a small town manifested in overcrowding churches and gracious deeds of love, "I See Revival" is an upbeat declaration of the power of the Gospel. "Stones," co-written by Jason Crabb, Connie Harrington and Jimmy Yeary, is a well-crafted melodic ballad that puts pause for those of us who often seem too critical of others. Songs that deal with the story of Jesus walking on water are copious, in this regard, "Walk on Water," do not charter new ground. However, the song's tag line: "I don't need to walk on water, I just need to know someone who does" is so liberating. This captures the Gospel with such mighty force: it's not up to us to change our circumstances, but it's all up to our Savior to save us.
Not to be missed are a trio of ballads. The first being the string-laden and harmony-packed "The King is Known By Love." If power ballads are what you crave for, this song truly indulges. Though a little tedious in its melodic development, "Never Been" showcases the Crabb Family's way around a ballad. Their ability to incarnate into the song bring out its truth is exemplar. However, if you long for some contemplative worship moments, give "Keep Me" a listen. Written by Caleb Collins and Sue C. Smith, "Keep Me" is a heart-rendering prayer for God to "keep us desperate for your love." The sincerity of the vocals, the gentle strums of the acoustic guitar, and the song's heartfelt lyrics make this acoustic-sounding ballad a true winner.
The Crabb Family goes out on a tangent with a few excursions. The bluesy and jaunty "The Altar Still Calls" is acceptable without being a standout. Much better is their take of the old-fashioned Gospel shout out "Sister Play that Tamborine." "20/20" is a much welcomed return for the family. Never have they sounded more animated and passionate. And with songs that bring such a sharp focus on the Gospel, this album doesn't disappoint.