When we last heard from Steven Curtis Chapman, the veteran solo singer/songwriter had made all things new, pushing his creativity in a different direction. Now three years and another Christmas project later, Chapman invites listeners to sieze the day with This Moment. Musically offering more of what fans have come to expect and love from Steven, This Moment continues to find Chapman stretching his creative legs, churning out another album of catchy pop tunes with a relevant message and heartfelt sentiment.
While Chapman's last studio project, All Things New was an artistic achievement, fans abroad didn't embrace it as well as his previous albums. With that, This Moment seems to get back to a bit of the basics for Chapman, serving as a more natural follow-up to 2001's Declaration. This Moment offers the signature mix of fun, faith, and more serious topics to follow more of the SCC album formula, but that's not to say the record is without its surprises. The opening track, "Miracle Of The Moment," is possibly the album's strongest offering as a pop single with a matured, slightly sandy vocal delivery from Chapman and a message that most everyone can gravitate towards. "Broken" is a powerful and honest highlight as well, addressing humanity's frailties and necessity for a Savior, where the singer admits, "I'm just a well dressed wreck / I'm just a made up mess / working hard trying to keep everybody impressed / All the while I'm falling apart on the inside... / We're all broken... / And we all need a Savior." It's this kind of brutal honesty that often makes for Chapman's best work.
"Cinderella" is probably the album's most sentimental offering, a piano ballad destined for prime placement at many Christian weddings. While his popular pledge "I Will Be Here" became many couples' wedding song, "Cinderella" is Steven's tribute to the growth and maturity of his daughters, and it's the perfect father/daughter dance anthem. "Yours" is a pop/worship song with a simplistic but effective admission of God's omnipotence, while "Something Crazy" is a fun and hooky pop/rock tune in the same vein as classics like "Live Out Loud" or "See The Glory." "Children Of God" is a bit of a catchy, youthful pop/rock anthem for believers, featuring Steven's sons aiding in the vocal department, but the track suffers a bit from overproduction. It's not something that might necessarily be a problem, but when you hear Chapman's strong vocals soar or just sing out softly on other tracks, the vocal treatment on "Children Of God" tends to sound a bit unnatural. "One Heartbeat At A Time" is a beautiful nod to the women who dedicate their lives to the often exhausting and thankless duties of motherhood, while "My Surrender" is a wonderful relinquishing of control up to God. This Moment draws to a finish with the upbeat "You Are Being Loved," the piano-driven pop of "Definition Of Me," and the rousing closer, "With One Voice."
This Moment is a relevant and inspiring album that proves Steven Curtis Chapman still has plenty to offer the world of music twenty years after his debut. Every track points the listener back to Christ in a way that feels natural. Chapman's dedication to his family and Creator is unmistakable, and his honesty and genuine character shines throughout This Moment's eleven songs. Uplifting, heartwarming, encouraging, vulnerable, joyous, and worshipful, Steven Curtis Chapman's latest is indeed a fine moment... one worth embracing that listeners can enjoy revisiting over and over again.- PReview date: 9/7/07, Reviewed 10/21/07 written by John DiBiase
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