David Crowder made quite an impact in 2003 with his groundbreaking project Illuminate. While his band's debut album was noteworthy, it was this second effort that really began to catch substantial attention. What's unique about Crowder and his band is that they don't simply stick with generic worship songs, they branch out to create an experience different from any other worship band today.
This has never been truer than on the band's latest project, Sunsets & Sushi. This disc basically has eight songs from Illuminate completely remixed with all sorts of interesting titles (i.e. "Pneumatic Mix" and "Antidromic Mix"). Most of the songs sound like they belong on a dance mix rather than a worship album, but that's not necessarily bad. The thing that hurts this album most is that many of the songs don't turn out as well in reality as they might have in theory. While "Intoxicating" works exceptionally well and has a very catchy bass beat, songs like "O Praise Him" and "Open Skies" simply don't seem to fit the techno sound they've been given.
Another thing that makes this disc lose some of its appeal is the fact that these are all songs from Illuminate, which came out in 2003, before Crowder's Lime CD was released. While Lime was a fairly well-timed live project, none of its songs were from Illuminate, (excluding a bonus demo at the end of the CD; I won't count that) and it lost a bit of its appeal due to that fact. Consequently, the timing of all of these releases seems a bit off. Had Lime been released before Illuminate, with Sunsets & Sushi next in line, the order would have made more sense. At this point, with the project having no new material and containing songs released a year and a half ago, Sunsets is a valiant effort, but nothing brilliant.
Ironically, the subtitle of this project is Experiments in Spectral Deconstruction, and really, that's exactly what the CD is: an experiment. With a few high points, it's hard to call the experiment a failure, but it's hardly a scientific breakthrough.- Review date: 2/13/05, written by Spencer Priest
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