Weaving their way back onto the air waves with the hit radio single "What Life Would Be Like," the guys of Big Daddy Weave are ready for another try at what they do best: making Christian music that is more than radio friendly pop with a small electric guitar solo. Their last effort, Every Time I Breathe, was a total letdown that may stand out as a bit of a sore thumb in the band's catalog of records. But fans should have no fear, Big Daddy Weave is back and this fifth record, What Life Would Be Like, will make you forget any mistakes that came before it.
"The Day That You Found Me" opens the album on an upbeat note with great similarities to those in the nu-country genre. The chorus alone will make you think of the harmony of Rascal Flatts. This is something a little new for Big Daddy Weave, seeing as they have typically stuck to their pop/folk roots. This branching out is a fresh twist on an already appreciated style. The title track offers a bold straightforwardness that will be something Christian listeners can enjoy and respect. Stylistically, "We Want the World to Hear" starts out with a funky beat not unlike that of Newsboys and quickly fades into more of a pop/rock undertone. It's on songs like these where Mike Weaver's vocals are often comparable to that of MercyMe's Bart Millard.
"Revive Us Again" is probably a hymn you have already heard a number of times. If you remember the band's last album, a lot of the tracks were renditions of old favorites. This did not fare well, as most of the songs musically and lyrically were too similar to the originals for there to be any unique distinction, but still different enough to be disappointing. This rendition of a classic, however, is tastefully redone and perfect for worship services focused on a more contemporary setting.
"Blue Skies" is a fast paced illustration of what every Christian should feel like: happy on the inside (which signifies the blue skies). It's a let loose, be free, and be glad kind of anthem. "Another Day in Paradise" was originally done by Phil Collins, a mastermind of musical storytelling, but this rendition will amaze even the most devoted fan of the original. The tone has more of an acoustic feel and Weaver's vocals blend so naturally into the beat that it seems effortless. You could call this a "diamond in the rough," but that would not do the album justice. Let's just say this track adds to the many highlights of this already impressive album.
A few more up-tempo numbers and another slow song round out the album, bringing the musical journey to a halt. But that won't have to last too long as the album possesses a strong replayability factor. You'll want to keep this one in your player for awhile. There are so many bands in the music industry today that makes it hard to keep up with new bands, let alone those of veteran status. It's records like this one, though, that make you revisit a band's past, appreciate their work in the present, and anticipate their future. If you are a newcomer to the music of Big Daddy Weave, congratulations - you have found a truly remarkable album that will prove your musical journey worthwhile. If you're already a fan, your devotion has been rewarded with What Life Would Be Like. An album like this makes even listening to to their least satisfying work worth it.- Review date: 7/21/08, written by Jessica Gregorius
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