Monday, August 30, 2010

Review: Natalie Grant's Love Revolution

Four-time award winning GMA female vocalist of the year, Natalie Grant returns with her highly anticipated studio album, Love Revolution. With her latest release, Natalie continues to exceed expectations with her incredible vocal ability. And as with previous endeavors, Natalie dabbles in several genres, all while remaining relevant in music and message.

Love Revolution starts off strong with two pop/dance tunes, “Daring To Be” and the title-track. “Daring To Be” challenges listeners to reject complacency and to courageously live out God’s will. The title-track is simply an anthem hoping to spark a love revolution. “Human,” co-written by former American Idol winner Jordin Sparks, also has big dance beats and is layered with warm synth pads.

Worship songs are a sizeable piece of Love Revolution. It would have been nice if Natalie had incorporated more original worship tunes; however, she chose to cover several popular worship songs instead. “Greatness of Our God” (Hillsong) feels a bit generic, as does “Your Great Name” (Krissy Nordhoff). Natalie hits some incredible high notes on the latter, but they sound painfully forced. This is also an issue on the ballad “Power of the Cross.” “Desert Song” (Hillsong) is a step in the right direction, as Natalie changes up the bridge a bit, but even superior is the only original worship song, “You Deserve.” It’s a slow-building song, and instead of taking the powerhouse approach, Natalie shifts her vocals to a warm and beautiful falsetto when reaching the peak notes of the song.

Natalie shines the most on funky old school tunes like “Beauty Mark” and “Someday Our King Will Come.” These songs are ones in which Natalie’s gospel and R&B influences really come to light and is the type of music that is best suited for her voice and style. “Beauty Mark” is Natalie’s personal desire for people to see how God has transformed her life, “I wanna look like love, I wanna look like, live like faith, I wanna let this life in me show on my face.” While “Someday Our King Will Come” is a reminder that no matter what trials and tribulations we face in life, we always have a hope- knowing one day Jesus will return.

I would be interested to hear a purely gospel/R&B album from Natalie Grant. I truly believe it could be a career-defining album for her. As for Love Revolution, it’s definitely an album worth picking up, and one that is currently the pinnacle of Natalie’s career.

Rating: 4/5

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School: Arcadia University '11 Major: Accounting