Listen to the new album from Citizen Way!
Listen to the new album from Citizen Way! The State Of Independents

Indie Spotlight Reviews

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Taylor Tripodi

Awakening EP

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Deep Valleys


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Jason Cameron

Guilt and Grace EP


Indie State Inspection Reviews

  • Chris Stephens, When It Was Dark (2019) /
    After playing with the award-winning Canadian rock band Three Season Ant for eight years, frontman Chris Stephens headed slightly south to New York, where he's played along with the band Landmark and is now writing music as a solo act. His first solo release (save for a Christmas EP last year) is a five-track EP, called When It Was Dark, that focuses on Stephens’ softer side. Whereas... Read the Full Review
  • Vaughn, Vaughn EP (2019) /
    With a number of performances under her belt, both live and as a guest vocalist on albums, Vaughn is finally branching out and releasing her own album of original songs. The self-titled EP contains five songs that give the listener a glimpse into who Vaughn is, as well as some of the other artists she's inspired by. Among those artists are folks like Lauryn Hill and Kim Walker-Smith, both of whom you can pick up in these songs (more so the latter). Vaughn's music really walks the line between praise & worship and pop... Read the Full Review
  • The Crossing Crew, Child Faith (2019) /
    The Crossing Crew is the brainchild of the Texan singer/songwriter James Paul Moravec, who builds all his songs on his own and brings in other musicians for the finishing touches. With a handful of releases to his name already, Moravec's ready to unleash the next Crossing Crew album, Child Faith. This collection of songs is rather interesting, because it takes us through a variety of different genres before we reach the final track... Read the Full Review
  • Light the Way, Dad Gang EP (2019) /
    Since forming in 2016, the Californian pop punk band Light the Way has kept quite busy, with a new EP or LP on an annual basis. Continuing this pace in 2019, the band is back at it with the Dad Gang EP, a pack of five brand new tracks. In true Christian pop punk fashion, Light the Way typically rides the line between having a good time and reflecting on God. However, Dad Gang focuses more on the latter. “Feelin’ Fine Since ‘89,” “Jimothy Halpert,” and “I Liked Old AFI Better” are terrific song titles, but are almost deceptive, as they’re songs that are surprisingly more on the... Read the Full Review
  • Satellite View, This is NOT the End (2019) / Bandcamp
    Christopher Lewis is a multi-talented, Floridian musician, songwriter, and producer who owns and operates a recording studio and spends a lot of his time writing his own music. Although he’s been a musician since his teenage years, Lewis is now branching out into the world of releasing his music to willing listeners. Under the name Satellite View, he’s written and recorded twelve songs for his debut album, This is NOT the End. Lewis’ musical inspirations range from the classic rock of The Beatles and Pink Floyd to modern artists like Josh Garrels and Beautiful Eulogy, and the creativity and... Read the Full Review
  • Him + Her Worship, Beacon EP (2019) /
    What started as a small endeavor performing their songs at various churches has become a full-time ministry for Seth and Jenna Herlich. In the past year, the Herlichs have been spending their time worshiping the Lord and helping usher those they meet into the throne room of God. Now the duo, going by the name Him + Her Worship, have taken the next step and recorded a few of their original songs for their debut EP, Beacon. Seth and Jenna both prove to be competent and passionate musicians and vocalists as they earnestly humble themselves... Read the Full Review
  • Inner 29, Now and Again, Here - EP (2019) / Facebook
    Music really is a universal language. No matter where you go, it seems you’ll be able to find a sound that is familiar. For instance, if you head south to Santa Catarina, Brazil, you might just run into a pop punk band known as Inner 29. This trio of rockers has only come together in the last year or so but are ready to show the world what they’re made of with their four-song EP, Now and Again, Here. As far as sound and production, Inner 29 is quite impressive; in fact, the whole EP sounds like it was touched on by the... Read the Full Review
  • Nathan Bankhead, Worship With Your Headphones On (2018) /
    Nathan Bankhead is a worship and gospel artist looking to innovate the scene. His most recent album, Worship With Your Headphones On, takes on gospel music with hip-hop/R&B beats and some club sounds as influence on the musical side of things. Lyrically, Bankhead takes the approach from a gospel and worshipful perspective. It's an interesting and eclectic blend that you certainly won't hear every day... Read the Full Review
  • Living Waters, Overflow (2019) / Official Blog
    It was 43 years ago that the worship collective known as Living Waters was formed. Though the band isn't as active as most bands, it's still an impressive length of time to stay together. Despite the decades of existence, 2011 was the first time Living Waters released an album, with a follow-up in 2016, and now a third release in 2019. Overflow is chock-full of classic Christian contemporary rock, much like what you'd hear from acts like Big Tent Revival, with a focus on storytelling like you might hear from The Choir... Read the Full Review
  • Orion Walsh, Foreigner EP (2019) /
    On Orion Walsh's latest solo EP, the Slow Coming Day frontman trades the electronic vibes of the band's album, 1,000 Years (Like a Day), for quirky coffee shop acoustic. As great as that niche can be, Foreigner doesn't quite hit its mark. The first two tracks, "Slaves to our Screens" and "Barista Love Song," could've playfully poked fun at our caffeine and tech-obsessed culture, but Walsh sticks to cliché lyrics that feel like an afterthought to otherwise fun-sounding songs. One of the few bright spots on the EP is the title track, where... Read the Full Review
  • Loudbrook, No MoRE NiGHT (2019) /
    Loudbrook is a worship act comprised of the husband and wife duo Bryan and Melissa Lautenbach. The two recently ran a successful crowdfunding campaign which led to the production of their forthcoming new album, No MoRE NiGHT. The fifteen-track album spans an hour in length and is full of original songs that fit in quite well with the current landscape of worship bands. Musically, Loudbrook is quite captivating, with lots of instrumental variety while maintaining a cohesive sound... Read the Full Review
  • True Strength, Sanguinary Vivification (2019) /
    Though it's not as much in the spotlight as it was in the 80s, heavy metal is still alive and kicking in various circles. And while the secular industry has bands like Iron Maiden and Dio, the Christian industry is getting its fair share with the likes of Deliverance, Narnia, and True Strength, who have a new album on their hands called Sanguinary Vivification. The album features nine songs that all really take their time getting to their respective destinations, having an average track length of around six minutes or so, with the longest track... Read the Full Review
  • Whitlee Casey, Dream (2019) /
    Whitlee Casey is a songwriter and worship leader in Texas who was inspired at a young age by his dad to pick up a guitar. Casey has been influenced by artists ranging from Garth Brooks to Steven Curtis Chapman and David Crowder. As a traveling musician for the past 10 years or so, Whitlee has been able to travese the country and play alongside CCM artists, such as for King & Country and even Crowder himself. Casey's influences can certainly be heard on his latest full-length album, Dream... Read the Full Review
  • Wes Powell, Experience Points (2019) / Official Facebook
    It's no secret that modern worship music can be a bit lacking in creativity. That's not to say that there aren't creative artists making worship music, but it seems to be more the exception than the rule. One independent artist from Layton, Utah is also trying his hand at making music for the Lord without falling into stagnancy. That artist's name is Wes Powell, and his album Experience Points is full of genuine praise music that, musically speaking, leaves you guessing from one track to the next. Powell's spectrum is wide open, with songs ranging from piano ballads (the humble and... Read the Full Review
  • Peter118, Waiting - Single (2019) / Official Site
    Punk rocker Peter Field is no stranger to the scene, having contributed as a member of bands like Senseless and Ambassadors of Shalom. But for the past five years, he’s instead focused on his three-piece act, Peter118. With a couple of EPs to the band’s name thus far, Peter118 is starting off 2019 with a brand new single called “Waiting.” The band’s previous release, a split EP with No Lost Cause, displayed their predilection for UK punk rock (with a dash of pop punk, of course)... Read the Full Review
  • The Ashamed & Shunned, Walking Contradiction - Single (2019) / Official Site
    The Ashamed & Shunned is a solo hip-hop artist hailing from Kokomo, Indiana. The Ashamed & Shunned is back again with his newest EP, Walking Contradiction, following 2017's album Kill Your Coward. TA&S brings a sort of low-tech version of hip-hop, but manages to produce catchy beats and capture solid production. An example of this "low-tech" approach is what sounds to be an 80's Casio keyboard set to mandolin on the opening track, "Still Unworthy." The lyrics in that opening number are a prayer and proclaim... Read the Full Review
  • Dabster Gentlemen, Death or Life (2018) / Facebook
    In the 1980s, the rock music scene was dominated by a style of music affectionately known as “hair metal.” The genre’s reign even reached into Christian music, where you could find bands like Stryper, Whitecross, Petra, and Bride. Of course, Stryper is still active, and Bride releases new music from time to time, but the frontman of the latter, Dale Thompson, is also taking on a new venture in the form of Dabster Gentlemen. With the band’s debut album, Death or Life, Dabster Gentlemen is a far cry from the hair metal sound you might know Thompson for... Read the Full Review
  • wes, with us EP (2018) / Bandcamp
    “I was created to know my Creator and to make my Creator known by creating.” The official bio for wes has more to say, but this line sticks out as perhaps his mission statement. This past Christmas, wes began putting that statement into action, using his love for hip hop as a ministry tool and releasing his debut EP, with us. Declaring that it’s “more than just a Christmas EP,” the five songs do heavily mention the birth of Christ... Read the Full Review
  • Jelani Aswad, The Revival Project (2018) /
    Jelani Aswad is a worship leader from the New York tri-state area. Aswad has been working and traveling as a professional vocalist with recording artists for the past 14 years, but just recently released his first solo album, The Revival Project, this past October. On top of being a professional vocalist, worship pastor, and licensed minister, Aswad also has his own record label in The Launching Pad Music Group. Jelani's sound is very eclectic and has the ability to reach across genres to meet and minister to people from different backgrounds and walks of life... Read the Full Review
  • Lousie Pollok, I'll Be Your Bride (2018) / iTunes
    Louise Pollok is a worship leader and songwriter from Australia who has just recently released her first album. I'll Be Your Bride is inspired by the Song of Solomon (aka: Song of Songs) with the idea being that we are the Bride of Christ. Louise wrote this album amidst trying times in her own life, but the hope of Christ shines through each song. Musically, I'll Be Your Bride carries a pretty common worship sound by today's standards. There is a lot of piano and some guitars and other instruments added into the tracks to fill them out. The lyrics are worshipful and Christ-centered... Read the Full Review
  • What They Died For, Can't Stop Now (2018) /
    Though it's existed for the better part of a decade, the New York rock band What They Died For is still a bit of a fledgling outfit. In the half decade since their last release (which was also their first release), the band has seen members come and go, but they finally settled on a line-up to write and record their first full-length record, Can't Stop Now. Musically, What They Died For takes the listener back to the days when rapcore was king (or was at least trying to usurp the throne). The band's blend of rap, rock, and hardcore easily brings to mind the old Bettie Rocket Records group... Read the Full Review
  • Jessica Johnson-Garcia, JJ+Garcia (2018) /
    Sometimes, living as an independent musician means putting your music career aside when life becomes demanding. Jessica Johnson had a promising career, even having some songs featured on some official mixtapes distributed by Mercedes Benz, but the call of marriage, motherhood, and her family became stronger. However, in 2015, the time came to get back into songwriting. Now Jessica Johnson-Garcia, she began work on what would become her new EP, JJ+Garcia... Read the Full Review
  • Joe Miralles Trio, Narrow Path - EP (2018) /
    Singer/songwriter Joe Miralles has spent most of his career as a solo artist, releasing his material at his own steady pace. But after the release of his 2015 EP, Five, Miralles decided it was time to put his creative talent together with other musicians, teaming up with a bassist named Nick Priessnitz and a drummer and keyboardist named Gary Houk to form the Joe Miralles Trio. The trio’s debut, Narrow Path, makes for an easy transition for longtime listeners, bearing similar sounds and influences... Read the Full Review
  • Connor Flanagan, Skyscrapers (2018) /
    When NF first came out with the song "I'll Keep On" it was an overnight sensation for the mainstream CCM industry that has largely moved away from any hip-hop influence. Clearly, this was a style of music and emotional message that resonated with Christians young and old. Emerging from the underground, Connor Flanagan brings his own mixture of hip-hop and worship. Though there are some definite comparisons to NF (specifically on "Anchor" and "Into The Wild") and even some Social Club Misfits (second verse of "Into The Wild"), Connor Flanagan does plenty to create his own vibe... Read the Full Review
  • Lauren Béa, Wildflower (2018) /
    To say that Austin native Lauren Béa isn't quite a household name just yet would be something of an understatement. Indeed, unless you happened to attend one of the women's conferences for which she provided music, you've probably never heard of her. Luckily for the members of the listening audience, an exhaustive knowledge of her back catalog isn't a requisite for enjoying her debut effort. Purveying a sort of dance/pop/adult contemporary hybrid, Wildflower is aimed at fans - of both genders - who happen to favor those particular musical genres... Read the Full Review
  • Brandon Hixson, Seasons (2018) /
    If you take a minute to read through the professional biography of singer/songwriter Brandon Hixson, you'll find a long string of terrific achievements. From fronting multiple bands to winning music awards to receiving a Master's Degree, Hixson has accomplished much, but his journey in the world of music isn't over. This year, he releases his newest batch of music, in the form of an album titled Seasons. If ever there was an appropriate use for the term "mixed bag," it would be with this album. Seasons features multiple genres, as well as themes and messages with varying depths... Read the Full Review
  • Behold the Dawn, Oh God What Have I Done (2018) / Official Facebook
    "Oh God, what have I done?" That's the cry of the sinner realizing that his life and actions have been unclean and filled with sin. It's also what sparked the idea (and title) for the new album from hard rock and metal band, Behold the Dawn. Oh God, What Have I Done pulls no punches with its straightforward, biting judgment of sin, coming at it from different angles. From the eyes of a sinner repenting, to a proclamation of God's victory over sin and death, Behold the Dawn makes every effort to declare Jesus' triumph over the world and its wicked ways... Read the Full Review
  • Eddy Mann, Worship in Spirit and Truth (2018) /
    The name may not be familiar to you, but over the last couple of decades or so, worship leader and musician Eddy Mann has been striking a chord in some independent music circles, with numerous albums and some independent music awards to his credit. Over the last year, Mann has worked on album number twelve, a worshipful batch of songs collectively (and aptly) titled Worship in Spirit and Truth. Mann clearly has a wide range of musical influences, as you�ll hear different genres and styles throughout the eleven tracks. A lot of what you�ll hear seems inspired by what is typically referred to as oldies, such as the... Read the Full Review
  • Ross King, This Hope Will Guide Me (2013) / Official Site
    Somewhere around the turn of the present millennium, Ross King was busy crafting songs like "Small Victories" ("We don't always like the taste of Living Water/ So we look around until we find a drink that we prefer") and "Clear the Stage" ("Tell your friends that this is where the party ends/ Until you're broken for your sins you can't be social/ Then seek the Lord and wait for what he has in store"). Both tracks were fairly representative of King's skill at crafting thought-provoking, often jarringly honest... Read the Full Review
  • Written to the Heavens, Long Time Coming (2018) / Spotify
    The digital age of music has its notable pros and cons, but one advantage of its existence is that it's easier than ever for aspiring musicians to get their music into the proverbial hands of potential fans. Having felt inspired to try his hand at it, and with the intent to bring glory to God and point people to Him, Andrew Bauschlicher put... Read the Full Review
  • Various Artists, 7Core Sonics #3 (2018) /
    As I was starting to discover music for myself, I can recall saying that the best music was that which was released outside of the major label market, and in a general sense, I believe that stands true today. As more artists are gravitating towards independence, labels like 7Core have made the marketing process a lot easier. And what better way to sample your roster than with a good compilation? 7Core Sonics #3 showcases six of their most popular artists. Each artist receives two slots in the tracklist which makes for a diverse sampler. Tina Boonstra's "Concrete Heart" and "Prodigal"... Read the Full Review
  • Sarah Felicia, Take Flight EP (2018) /
    The story of Sarah Felicia's journey into the music industry may not sound unfamiliar to you, but to the young singer/songwriter from Ontario, Canada, it's an important one. Growing up with a passion for music has led her to releasing a single called "Red Balloon" in 2017 (and a French counterpart called "Ballon Rouge"), as well as her debut EP this summer. Take Flight explores Felicia's talents as both a musician and a singer, with simple but effective instrumentation and a keen ear for melody and harmony. That being said, Felicia's songs are also relatively simple - but not in a... Read the Full Review
  • House on Solid Rock, Revivify (Single) (2018) / Bandcamp
    Christian Joseph Allbee is an indie artist who goes by the name House On Solid Rock. Allbee recently released his newest, self-produced, single back in April. The name of the song is "Revivify," which simply means, to give new life. The song has a melody somewhat similar to Blink-182's "Don't Leave Me," but musically sounds nothing like the 1999 pop/punk tune. In the first verse, the lyrics talk about how God has saved him from a childhood of depression and a life of troubles, while the chorus focuses on how God's love has breathed new life into him... Read the Full Review
  • Jeremy Ryan, Into The Light: Songs of Redemption and Hope in the Midst of Despair EP (2018) / Facebook
    For Texas native Jeremy Ryan, playing music has been nearly a lifelong passion. Learning the craft in middle school led to fronting bands in high school, and now, as a believer in Jesus, he's using that same passion to worship his Savior and share the Gospel. His first outing as a solo artist is a short, five-song EP with a long title, Into the Light: Songs of Redemption and Hope in the Midst of Despair. Ryan's style has always been influenced by rock and metal, and you really hear those influences play out in these songs... Read the Full Review
  • WILKES, WILKES EP (2018) / Official Site
    Jason Wilkes has always been a master of genre jumping--he started off his career as the lead singer of the alternative rock band High Flight Society from 2001 - 2012, became the bassist / backing vocalist for Disciple (2012 - 2015), and transitioned to pop/rock when he went solo in 2015. After a recent stint on NBC's The Voice, Wilkes is following up with a five-song pop/country album simply titled Wilkes EP. To those who followed him on The Voice, or know of his position as a staff writer for country music publisher Dan... Read the Full Review
  • Iryne Rock, J.F.Y. (Just For You) (2018) / Official Site
    Iryne Rock is a Nigerian singer/songwriter who grew up listening to some of the great Spirit-filled musical artists from the past few decades, like The 2nd Chapter of Acts, the Winans, and Michael W. Smith. With this appreciation for music from an early age, Rock started trying her hand at songwriting and discovered a talent that she wanted to use to glorify our Savior. And that's exactly what she does on her newest release, J.F.Y (Just for You). Rock's style is obviously derived from the aforementioned influences, with gospel and contemporary cores mixing with pop, r&b... Read the Full Review
  • Mast of Glorious, Jesus Ways - Single (2018) / Official Site
    Though not typical, it's not unheard of for artists to release music under different monikers depending on the genre. We've seen this in prolific artists like Cee-Lo Green (Gnarls Barkley, Gnarly Davidson) and Adam Young (Owl City, Sky Sailing, Port Blue). This same tactic is also being applied by Mosaic Rain Recordings artist Tre Carn, a songwriter who writes the lyrics that end up being performed by a different batch of musicians. Carn's newest single is called "Jesus Ways," and is being performed by a worship leader named Jay Long and a collective being referred to as Mast of Glorious... Read the Full Review
  • Firma Collective, Songs for Every Soul (2018) / iTunes
    Worship acts have it pretty hard. There seems to be a typical trajectory of unforeseen popularity born from a specific sound, and whether or not an artist attempts to leave that pigeon-hole, either leads to unoriginality or failed reinvention. That's why there's always hope when a new group comes onto the scene, particularly when it is led in part by legendary engineer Tom Mgrdichian. Although Firma Collective certainly provides the sonic variety that one would hope for from a debut worship release, Songs For Every Soul mostly feels more like a hodge-podge of singles than a united vision... Read the Full Review
  • The Wayward Kind, Avalanche EP (2018) / Official Site
    The state of Kansas isn't well-known for its citizens forming famous bands. A few bands have gone on to make something of themselves, such as Pillar, Abandon Kansas, and...well, Kansas. All that being said, there is no shortage of musical acts in the state, as Hutchinson-native Jeremy Stokely can attest. Under the name The Wayward Kind, Stokely has begun writing and recording songs that he wrote while deployed in the Middle East. His latest album is the Avalanche EP, which features five songs that cover a few different genres... Read the Full Review
  • Ryan and Michelle Black, Our Dwelling Place (2018) / Official Site
    Ryan and Michelle Black are worship pastors from Victoria, Australia and have recently released their album, Our Dwelling Place. The couple, married since 2005, hope to reveal the radical love, grace and hope of Jesus through their ministry and this album. Musically, Our Dwelling Place is what you'd expect of modern worship music -- especially coming out of the rather large Australian worship scene. The production is really great and the instrumentation is highly enjoyable. Most of the songs feature a really great piano, with the happy and upbeat "Search Me" being... Read the Full Review
  • Chye, Sparrow EP (2018) / Official Site
    The story of Chye (pronouced like "shy") is a story of hope, named after a young lady named Cheyenne who made a choice to stop her pattern of destruction and instead choose life, hope, and Jesus. You can hear more about that story on the song "Cheyenne" fro their 2010 EP, Brand New Day. After an EP in 2012, followed by six years away from making music, Chye is at it once again with a new batch of songs for their EP Sparrow. One of the more interesting tracks on this offering starts things off. "Galilee" is a radio-ready contemporary pop song - with a hint of Celtic... Read the Full Review
  • The Prettybads, Meet The Prettybads (2018) / Bandcamp
    Punk rock comes in many shapes and sizes, from the anarchistic stylings of Dead Kennedys to the poppy sounds of Stellar Kart, with a myriad of in-betweeners putting their own spin on the genre. Coming in this year to take a stab at it is the Houston, Texas outfit The Prettybads, newly-signed to Indie Vision Music and ready with a massive twenty-song album. The band's live videos showcase a fast-paced, in-your-face punk sound that is fully... Read the Full Review
  • Less Than Greater Than, Let It Breathe (2018) / Facebook
    Less Than Greater Than is a rock band from the Oklahoma City area. The band's music is undoubtedly rock and roll, but it also carries a 90's alternative vibe as well. Most of the album has this 90's feel that has the potential to sound dated to some, but just right for others -- especially, for those who, like me, refuse to give up the 90s era of rock music. Let It Breathe is the band's second release and is the follow-up to 2000's Knowledge Boat (recently remastered and released digitally). The songs on Let It Breathe have enjoyable rhythms, crunchy guitars, some... Read the Full Review
  • Blane Dunnam and Candice Emerson, Inheritance (2018) / Facebook
    Blane Dunnam and Candace Emerson are a sibling duo based out of southern Georgia. Their debut album, Inheritance, is a collection of worship songs that should appeal to fans of modern worship music. However, Inheritance is much more simplistic and subdued musically compared to those mega church worship albums that release annually -- this makes the album a little more endearing. The brother and sister pairing works well for Blane and Candace and their vocals blend perfectly. However, the songs fronted by Blane, with Candace singing background and on... Read the Full Review
  • My Heart Lies, Love and Fear (2018) /
    Sometimes when you chase a dream, the finish line comes quickly and easily. But more often than not, reaching the end requires a lot of time and work. Kentucky musician Michael Nichols' dream was to release an album of his own original songs after being involved in a number of other collaborative projects. From writing the core of the songs on his own to piecing together an actual band to fully conceptualize the songs, Nichols has been hard at work, and the finished product is here...about nine years later. Under the name... Read the Full Review
  • TFH Worship, Pursuit (2018) /
    Northern California is where you'll find a small network of church bodies called The Father's House. Like many modern churches, The Father's House has a worship team that writes original worship songs and records them for the body of Christ outside of their area. Under the name TFH Worship comes their newest full-length release, Pursuit, a live album that establishes the team as a contemporary to... Read the Full Review
  • Kaylee + Erica, Creation's Song EP (2018) /
    There seems to be an obvious disconnect with today's younger generations and the church. It's no secret that many of the same church youth groups that were overflowing in the 90's are struggling to stay relevant and keep up with the life and activities of teenagers today. Jamie Grace is an easy pick when thinking of younger musicians proclaiming the name of Christ, but the list gets really short, really fast. Sisters Kaylee + Erica, however... Read the Full Review
  • House on Solid Rock, Not Alone (Single) (2018) / Bandcamp
    Wichita Falls resident Christian Allbee is the mastermind behind the project House on Solid Rock, a musical outfit that incorporates a wide range of styles in its music while praising the name of God. With only a handful of singles, it's a bit difficult to really gauge the overall sound Allbee will be going for, but one of the more recent singles, "Not Alone," stands out as a bit of a unique track. The musical and vocal melody bring to mind that of the song "Carelessness" by Fair. However, the similarities begin and end there... Read the Full Review
  • H&J Quintet, Reminisce (2017) / iTunes
    It's not everyday that the world is introduced to a Brazilian hymnal jazz album. With their album debut, Reminisce, the H&J Quintet (comprised of husband and wife Hanna Kim and Joseph Seo, along with their friends Seyun Park, Tristan Garrity, and Marcelo Maccagnan) have put a unique spin on six familiar hymns alongside an original composition ("Pray For Boston") and live track ("My Father's World"). While the idea of hymnal jazz might sound intriguing to some and too niche for others, the result is a creatively executed record that is enjoyable... Read the Full Review
  • Jonathan Hunt, See the Light EP (2018) /
    Not long after winning the Local Music Project from Spirit 105.9 in Austin, Texas, singer/songwriter Jonathan Hunt began work on a new EP, which he released just this past month. See the Light is a mostly upbeat southern pop rock EP, with five songs showcasing just why he is capable of winning such a contest. The title track kicks off with a radio-ready, country-esque pop song that isn't the EP's strongest offering, but is still a good choice for the opening track... Read the Full Review
  • Ramsayman, The RLE Years (2017) /
    Ramsayman is the musical product of long time singer/songwriter/musician, Darren Ramsay. As a fan of super heroes and comic books, Ramsay says the name Ramsayman is the superhero moniker he would use if he ever were a superhero -- drawing inference from Larry Boy, who used his own namesake in his superhero persona's name. Even the EP cover shows Darren's love of comics with his homage to Action Comics #1. Ramsay has been in several, and varied, musical ventures over the years. His project The RLE Years contains six songs from his late 90s band, Red Letter... Read the Full Review
  • Carli Elizabeth, Blessed Redeemer - Single (2018) / Instagram
    The name Carli Elizabeth may not be familiar to listeners, but with her new single, "Blessed Redeemer," the young singer/songwriter displays the kind of talent that can make her a household name. In the same vein as artists like Hillsong United and Brooke Fraser, "Blessed Redeemer" is a modern indie pop track with a soft rhythm and low BPM. A light drum loop repeats throughout the song, with a few sparse piano chords to guide it... Read the Full Review
  • Jonathan Tekell, Love Me To Pieces (2018) /
    Jonathan Tekell is a singer/musician/songwriter with a wide variety of musical influences driving his writing style. Tekell's musicianship dates back to his high school days when he learned a lot of music theory as he progressed. However, God challenged Jonathan with a surgery on his wrist to repair ligaments -- crippling his ability to play music... Read the Full Review
  • Matthew James Mason, Refuge EP (2018) /
    It's widely known that "worship music" has become its own genre in today's CCM and many of those worship artists are household names: from solo acts like Chris Tomlin and David Crowder to large churches and collectives like Bethel, Hillsong, and Jesus Culture. What most people don't realize, however, is that there is a large group of independent artists making quality worship music as well. Matthew James Mason, a worship leader and pastor in Dublin, Ohio, is one of such artists... Read the Full Review
  • Andrew Marshall & Sixth Hour, Maybe This Time (2018) /
    Country music is a staple of the southern and midwestern states; from Kansas to Tennesse to Texas, you can find the genre on a great deal of stations if you just scan the airwaves. But they don't have a monopoly on the sound, as you can find it in some of the more unexpected regions of the country. Take North California, for instance, which is the home of the fivepiece country and southern rock act, Andrew Marshall & Sixth Hour. The band members are all experienced... Read the Full Review
  • newRealm, Of Your Hands (2018) /
    The band newRealm started in Athens, GA while all of the members were attending the University of Georgia in 2012. While playing worship music together for a campus ministry, the group grew together and eventually became the band they are today. It may have been a bit of journey to get to this point, but they have finally released their full-length debut album, Of Your Hands. The band's name has to do with the book of Revelation when John declares... Read the Full Review
  • Brad + Rebekah, Sound of Heaven (2018) /
    It's amazing how radically different our perception of music is influenced by its history. After all, what would Sufjan Steven's Carrie and Lowell or Kings Kaleidoscope's Zion be without the departing loss of a soul that the artist connected to and influenced its creation? Likewise, the worship duo Brad + Rebekah join this treasured trove of artists to give us a new take on just what an album can be... Read the Full Review
  • Horizon Music, Victory (2017) /
    Horizon Community Church is comprised of a small network of local church bodies across the state of Oregon, and, like many larger churches nowadays, they're yearning to make something more of their music ministry than just playing on Sunday mornings. Under the blanket name Horizon Music, the worship leaders have banded together to release a multi-artist worship album called Victory. With the plan being to reach a younger generation, and perhaps some that wouldn't normally listen to worship music, Horizon has tapped into the musical interests of the... Read the Full Review
  • Hope Resounds, Let Hope Resound (2017) / Facebook
    Generally, when one thinks of worship artists from Australia, there's really one name that comes to mind. That's reasonable, as Hillsong is basically a household name among those knowledgeable of the world of Christian music. But alongside Hillsong, another Sydney-based worship outfit is rising up and actively getting its music out there for any worshipers of Jesus to hear. The duo known as Hope Resounds gave us a Christmas EP this past holiday season, but before that, they introduced themselves through a six-song EP called Let Hope Resound. While... Read the Full Review
  • Elohin, R2.0 Let's Continue (2017) /
    Detroit rapper Elohin (Lon Harris) recently released his sophomore album, R2.0 Let's Continue -- produced by J.R. and other acclaimed production studios. On R2.0, Elohin brings his creative nature out. Thankfully, this means listeners don't get a ton of the trap rap and triplets dominating today's hip-hop scene. The sound you do get is a mix of straightforward rap along with some R&B stylings. Most of the songs contain a feature and many of them (at least in the first half) feature female vocals in the chorus. The album starts off in a pretty provocative manner with "Miss America... Read the Full Review
  • Best Foot Back, Best Foot Back (2017) / Facebook
    The early and mid 2000s were a great time for music, and pop punk was responsible for some of the best albums on the market. The past couple years has seen a resurgence in the pop punk scene, thanks to outlets like Indie Vision Music. One independent act trying their hand at the genre is the Columbus, Ohio-based quartet Best Foot Back. The band's self-titled debut EP features five songs that really emphasize... Read the Full Review
  • Logan Peck, On and On (2017) /
    With a heart for music from a young age, Nashville's own Logan Peck has made his first splash in the music industry with his debut EP, On and On. The EP contains five songs that vary in sound from one another, but don't stray too far outside of a clear comfort zone of radio-ready pop rock and worship. The first track, "Forever Free," is a Celtic folk pop song in the vein of Rend Collective. It's an interesting track, but it's almost indicative of an album that we don't end up getting here, as the sound quickly changes with "Fortress... Read the Full Review
  • Ted Jiboye, Faithful (2018) /
    Ted Jiboye, a worship leader, singer and songwriter for over 20 years, is releasing his newest album, Faithful. Jiboye's sound, while familiar, is actually pretty diverse in the types of groups, or congregations, it could reach. Instead of the typical: Artist A's songs are perfect for Church 1, but Artist B's songs are better for Church 2, Jiboye blends his music to reach varied church types and congregations. Musically, a lot of Ted's songs carry the modern worship sound adored by so many, a-la the Chris Tomlin type of worship leader... Read the Full Review
  • Reflection of Glory, Reborn (2017) /
    There aren't a whole lot of Christian symphonic metal acts available for fans of the genre, but those that are around are more underground acts. Enter Reflection of Glory: an independent symphonic metal act with heavy alt/metal influences. The soul behind Reflection of Glory is Barry Dreier, who writes, records, and produces all of the music. His latest album, Reborn, is a slight shift in sound from his previous two albums (Birds Eye View and Christmas), which were much softer... Read the Full Review
  • Brooke Robertson, Have My Heart EP (2017) /
    Christian music has been lacking younger female role models lately. Lauren Daigle stepped up to the plate big time, but for the past two years she has really been the only one to make a significant impact as a new artist. There have been a few others, like Hollyn and Lauren Alexandria, who have debuted with good music, but have yet to receive the same level of traction as Daigle. Within this context, Brooke Robertson is... Read the Full Review
  • McKinneyDawson, Above All - EP (2017) /
    Kaitlyn McKinney and Christian Dawson were once part of the band Crossing, but have since formed a worship duo under the moniker McKinneyDawson. McKinneyDawson is a pop worship project with a strong emphasis on electronic/dance elements. The pair have been traveling together for over six years and their overall goal is to point people of all backgrounds to Jesus. Their EP, Above All, is the group's first release and each of the five tracks point directly to scripture. While "Psalm 33" is pretty self-evident... Read the Full Review
  • Johnny Anomaly, Whispers and Screams (2017) /
    The art of spoken word is an acquired taste for many, and it's no small feat to be great at it. Many try their hand at it, but few ever really succeed. In 2017, there's a new poet throwing his hat into the ring, and his name is Johnny Anomaly. This year alone, he's released a single entitled "Wings," an EP entitled Nothing To Prove, Nothing To Lose, and his debut, full-length album back in January, entitled Whispers & Screams. Of course, with so few successful artists in the arena, it's difficult to not draw comparisons here. Levi the Poet and Jackie Hill Perry do come to mind when listening to different portions... Read the Full Review
  • Acoustic Truth, Impact (2017) /
    Acoustic Truth is the musical project of husband and wife duo Ryan and Sarah Knott. The Chicago-based couple makes acoustic based music -- with contemporary, country, pop influences -- with the hopes of bringing back heartfelt music they feel has been lost over the years. The two also remain ministry focused as they play as the praise band for their church. Though Sarah sings mostly lead, the Knotts' voices blend nicely together and complement each other well. The overwhelming majority of Impact is soft and mellow... Read the Full Review
  • All Above North, How Great It Is to Be Broken (2017) /
    The early 2000's was an amazing time for music: rock had evolved into so many denominations and expressions that it collided with pop, hip-hop, country, etc. Furthermore, worship music started to grow and change into a more mainstream sound leading to the explosion of Hillsong, Passion and Crowder, among other progressive pioneers. These incredible trailblazers have led to an ever-growing number of worship artists and bands. Adding to that growing fold is Australian based indie band All Above North with their debut album... Read the Full Review
  • Rachel Moore, Insanity (single) (2017) /
    Throughout human history, mankind has looked up to the sky and asked "Why?" It's a question Rachel Moore became very familiar with; as she struggled through years of depression, illness, and doubt, she kept asking God "Why?" When He inevitably brought Moore the victory He had planned for her, He led her to being a counselor, an author, and then a singer/songwriter. Teaming up with her musically-gifted husband, Rachel Moore began writing songs for a full-length album. Before the album's release, she's testing the water with a couple of singles, the newest of which is called "Insanity... Read the Full Review
  • Seth Nelsen, Victory (2017) /
    Seth Nelsen is a worship leader at House Church in Eagan, Minnesota and has had a desire to record an album for many years. Nelsen's goal in writing and recording an album is to reach others across the globe, and not just those in his local congregation. Nelsen had been working on Victory for a few... Read the Full Review
  • Jason Whitehorn, As Long As I Have Breath (2017) /
    A singer/songwriter from Nashville with years of experience in the music industry, Jason Whitehorn has only recently released his first solo album, As Long As I Have Breath. Stylistically, the majority of the album, including Whitehorn's vocals, is very much akin to Jeremy Camp. Whitehorn's voice isn't as deep as Camp's; it's more in the tone of the voice that you can hear the resemblance. The album is worshipful in nature, with a few reimagined hymns and several songs about God making all things new and being with us at all times... Read the Full Review
  • We Live Forever, We Live Forever (2017) /
    We Live Forever is an acoustic and electronic based worship band, featuring Robert Steele, based in California. The group's self-titled debut released last month and, according to the band, looks to take the listener on a journey of Jesus's beauty, grace, and mercy. Acoustic guitar dominates the album, but piano, keyboard, and electronic instruments complement it throughout. Musically, the album has highlights, with the upbeat acoustic track "Faithful and True," the 70s rock flair of "Moon," and the more open, airy and light feel of "From Above... Read the Full Review
  • Teressa Mahoney, Made New EP (2017) /
    Teressa Mahoney is a singer/songwriter from Colorado with nearly 30 years of experience singing. From youth group worship bands to national conventions, singing wasn't just a hobby, but a passion for Mahoney. After taking some time to focus on her marriage, children, and graphic design career, Mahoney learned how to play a guitar and started singing again, leading to an opportunity to write and record her debut EP, Made New. Mahoney establishes her sound early on; despite being... Read the Full Review
  • The Arctic, Reverberate EP (2017) / Bandcamp
    Canadian band The Arctic released their debut EP, Reverberate, in August. While the group lay claim to the title of "worship band," their musical output doesn't immediately bring that to mind. The EP opener (after an ambient intro), "Searchlights," is really upbeat and -- while it's unashamed in its messaging -- doesn't play out like the worship music you'll hear today. The guitar lead in the title track is a nice one, but the song shifts more to that "worship" style of music... Read the Full Review
  • Sophie Stiles, Chartreuse EP (2016) / Bandcamp
    Sophie Stiles is a singer songwriter from Oregon who is offering up her coffee house style of acoustic music. While her folk inspired songs feature full instrumentation, each one would play nicely with just a single guitar. Stiles' six-song debut, Chartreuse, is a nice introduction to not only her music, but her heart as well. The most interesting tracks present on the album revolve around Biblical figures. Chartreuse opens with "The Calling of Jeremiah." Sophie takes a look at the Prophet Jeremiah's calling to go speak to Israel as a child... Read the Full Review
  • Company of Saints, Programmer EP (2017) / Facebook
    Company of Saints is a SoCal worship band that specializes in pop sounds with synths and other tricks. The duo features the husband and wife combination of Julia and Mark Palmer. Their newest release is a 5-track EP, titled Programmer. The entire EP is pretty mellow overall and gives off a very relaxing vibe from front to back... Read the Full Review
  • Echoboy, Not Alone EP (2017) /
    Echoboy's three-song Kingdoms EP drew positive reviews from Jesusfreakhideout last year and now the band is back with their five-track follow-up, Not Alone. The pop-rockers (with a heavy emphasis on the pop) have released another collection of songs ready for today's CCM radio. Catchy hooks and near flawless production have them primed for a major breakout. While the title track and "Livin For Love" are a nice start, "Shine On" is absolutely screaming for play on K-LOVE and local stations alike. Not only is it the most versatile track musically, but it's... Read the Full Review
  • Company of Saints, Face to Face (2017) / Facebook
    For almost a decade now, husband/wife duo Mark and Julia Palmer have been spreading the Gospel to Southern California through their music. Operating under the name Company of Saints, the Palmers have been creating music and giving it away for free through their own independent record label, Royal Laundry, as well as through... Read the Full Review
  • Chris B. Young, Jesus Christ: Prince of Life (2017) /
    There are lot of people who have a passion for creating music, but seem to lack the talent to actually play any instruments or sing. Chris B. Young has no problem admitting to having this issue, but he doesn't let that stop him. On his debut album, Jesus Christ: Prince of Life, listeners encounter a full-length album, the lyrics of which were entirely written by Young himself. But that's all that you'll hear from him, as all the instruments and vocals are courtesy of other musicians and singers... Read the Full Review
  • Eric John Smith, Prodigal Son (2017) / Facebook
    Eric John Smith is a singer/songwriter/musician from the land of Mickey -- Orlando, Florida. Smith has been in multiple bands over the years, but in all his endeavors, he strives to give God the glory first and foremost. Prodigal Son is Smith's second release following 2016's Mountain Be Moved. Smith lists his main influence as Jason Martin and Starflyer 59. While the music is much more acoustic than Martin's SF59, the vocal approach definitely displays the influence. Musically speaking, Prodigal Son is an excellent listen... Read the Full Review
  • Richard Meals, From Today (Single) (2017) / Facebook
    Living in and around cities like Nashville, Tennesse and Austin, Texas for a large portion of your life is sure to bring out the musician in you. That's what happened to Richard Meals, who got into songwriting on top of his industrial career. Even after a move to Asia, he kept writing and performing his original songs. His most recent work is a single called "From Today." Recognized by the Great American Song Contest, "From Today" is an interesting number, with multiple genres melded into one. Its roots are firmly lodged in country gospel... Read the Full Review
  • People of the Earth, In All Things (2017) /
    People of the Earth is a Kentucky based worship band specializing in worship tunes for pop music fans. Frontman/founder Dustin Fenison is already quite accomplished as a staff writer for Daywind Music Publishing (a HUGE outfit in the Christian music industry) and is one of the pastors at his home church. Their newest EP, In All Things, contains five brand new songs and another song that was released last year and featured on Vital Worship, Vol. 2. The EP sets out with a heavy pop vibe from the get go... Read the Full Review
  • Children of Wrath, No Flesh Spared (2017) / Bandcamp
    There is such diversity in heavy music, with more subgenres of hardcore and metal than almost any other genre. Phoenix, Arizona-based Children of Wrath explores a number of them on No Flesh Spared. An act consisting of only one man, Luke Dinan, Children of Wrath takes inspiration from bands like... Read the Full Review
  • David Vaters, A Voice in the Wilderness Vol. 1 (2017) /
    David Vaters is a singer/songwriter who has teamed up with a slew of accomplished studio musicians to release a two volume set of his solo works. A Voice in the Wilderness Volume 1 is an Americana and heartland flavored album, with a dash of classic rock, that features songs exploring God's display of wonder and grace towards His creation. After only a few songs in, you can hear a strong Bruce Springsteen influence in Vaters' work -- especially his vocal style... Read the Full Review
  • Levi Ransom, True Intentions (2017) / Official Twitter
    Already boasting several albums in his discography, Levi Ransom is a young singer/songwriter from Atlanta, Georgia, who has just released a new full-length project of original songs, called True Intentions. Ransom spends a lot of time singing with high-pitched vocals, in the realm of Brooks Paschal from Sullivan, but he shows... Read the Full Review
  • Xd Out, Better Day (2017) /
    There's a been a recent resurgence of grunge rock, which is both exciting and terrifying. It straddles those extremes because, just like the explosion of EDM or Brit-pop, there are those who standout and others who get lost in the mix completely. Regarding indie band Xd Out, their latest album Better Day resides within that tension for better or worse. The album opens with the worshipful ballad, "We Love You Lord." The song is clearly a declaration of love for the Lord... Read the Full Review
  • Gretchen Keskeys, Pure Hope (2017) /
    Gretchen Keskeys released her debut album, Walking in the Spirit, just last year, but since its release, she's gone on to perform on a variety of Christian TV and radio programs in support of it. Now the former Warehouse Christian Ministries worship leader is riding that momentum and giving listeners a brand new album this summer. Some of the songs on Pure Hope actually came from her experience of releasing Walking in the Spirit, such as "Pure Hope" and "Adversity... Read the Full Review


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This Friday, October 25
Lauren Daigle Rescue (Chill Mix) - Single [Centricity]
Norma Jean All Hail [Solid State]
Kalley Faultlines Vol. 1 - EP [Bethel]
Kalley Faultlines Vol. 2 - EP [Bethel]
MercyMe Almost Home - Single [Fair Trade]
Mike REAL Moonwalk EP [Clear Sight Music]
Northwood Worship Who You Are [DREAM Worship]
Chuckie P. Faith, Hope and Love (independent)
Andrew Peterson Behold the Lamb of God: The True Tall Tale of the Coming of Christ (Re-recorded album) [Centricity]
The Porter's Gate Neighbor Songs [Integrity]

Next Friday, November 1
Travis Greene Broken Record [RCA Inspiration]
Highlands Worship Shine Heaven's Light: A Christmas EP [The Fuel]
Coby James Happier - EP [Centricity]
Mission House Mission House EP [Integrity]
Selah Firm Foundation [Curb]
RED The Evening Hate EP [RED/The Fuel]
Various Artists DREAM Christmas, Vol. 4 [DREAM]

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