Andrew Peterson continues his tradition of rich storytelling and observations of everyday life with his latest effort, Counting Stars. On the one hand, the album is simply another Andrew Peterson album; great songs, thoughtful lyrics, slightly predictable. On the other hand, Counting Stars is one of Peterson's strongest albums to date and is better than a great majority of albums the Christian industry has put out this year.
All Peterson's albums are personal, but Counting Stars is especially introspective. The album begins with "Many Roads," an homage to Peterson's fans and continues with a song about the uncertainty and thrill of marriage, "Dancing in the Mine Fields." Peterson has written about marriage numerous times, but this time he captures its essence like never before. "Planting Trees" is a nod to Compassion International, an organization Peterson has supported for years. "The Magic Hour" is pretty but unremarkable, and "World Traveler" revisits the theme of finding satisfaction in family, a topic Peterson frequently writes about. Under two minutes long, "Isle of the Skye" is a transitional song followed by "God of my Fathers," a song that could have easily appeared on Behold the Lamb of God. Then, Peterson seems to change direction and the album finally gets interesting with "Fool with a Fancy Guitar." Peterson is at his best when he is most vulnerable, and "Fool with a Fancy Guitar" and the remaining four songs are some of the finest the artist has recorded to date. They examine the complexity of the human condition and man's deepest desire to connect with God.
Counting Stars is another success for Andrew Peterson, and the last five songs prove the artist can stretch beyond his comfort zone. I would like to see him stretch even further like Derek Webb on Stockholm Syndrome or Justin McRoberts on his covers album, but as long as Peterson keeps producing records of this caliber, I will continue to listen.- Review date: 7/26/10, written by Laura Nunnery Love of Jesusfreakhideout.com
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