Stephen Christian "Wildfires"
by Michael Tackett ( on 2017-08-03 09:06:51

Stephen Christian, most commonly known as the lead singer for Anberlin, released his first worship record late last month titled Wildfires. Christians previous band Anberlin was an American alternative rock band known for such songs as "The Feel Good Drag" and "Dismantle. Repair.". With Anberlin breaking up in 2014 Christian has continued to write and perform new music. (Most recently under the band name With Anchor & Braille) Christian next music dive, Wildfire, has the singer/songwriter in a CCM radio friendly environment that sometimes works and sometimes doesn’t.

The record starts off with "Trust". It has a great build up but an anticlimactic chorus. From there we are treated to some standard CCM songs, "Gloria" and "Wide Eyed Wonder". All of which has a great message- Trusting and Proclaiming the name of Jesus. While the songs themselves are not bad they do tend to blend in together so much that you start thinking “What ..which song is this?”

The middle of the record gives the best offerings with songs like "Hope Has A Name", "Atmosphere", and the album highlight "Undone". "Atmosphere" has guest vocalist Sarah Reeves and is a beautiful ballad that describes the power of God. "Undone", co-written with Tenth Avenue North Mike Donehey, is an album highlight. It's a plea to letting go of one’s own desires and letting God work in their life. Christian sings “A house divided cannot stand/So build my world upon/ Your truth Yes, my life is in Your hands”.

I commend Stephen Christian on following his heart (if you follow him on social media you know he has a true passion for Worship Music) however Wildfires really doesn’t break any new ground or set itself apart from any other CM radio friendly records or songs out there today. Those looking for friendly CCM radio type songs will not be disappointed while others looking for something deeper may want to look elsewhere.

Rating: 3 out of 5

Genre: Pop
Label: Bec Recordings
Release Date: July 28, 2017
Buy it: Amazon - iTunes

Trust (4:10)
Gloria (4:15)
Wide Eyed Wonder (3:23)
Light Rise Up (3:56)
Hope Has a Name (3:39)
Atmosphere (feat. Sarah Reeves) (5:25)
He Is Anthem (4:35)
Undone (3:48)
One More Moment (3:45)
All I Need To Know (4:10) -

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