Thursday, July 28, 2005

To Kill a Mockingbird?

Good grief, Derek Webb is a busy guy. Since leaving Caedmon's Call in 2003 the singer/songwriter has released two studio albums and a live recording, and, even amidst constant touring, it looks like he's going to bring his total catalogue up to five entries by the end of 2005. In October he'll be releasing a live concert DVD, How to Kill and Be Killed, and, on the day after Christmas, we'll get to hear his new studio record, Mockingbird. Derekwebb.net has the details.

You know, for my money, Webb may very well be the most convicting singer/songwriter making music today, and certainly the best artist to come out of the Christian music industry since... gosh... Leslie Phillips?!?

Webb's 2003 debut, She Must and Shall Go Free, remains my favorite of his records. It's an energetic roots/rock album filled with references to the Reformation and calls for the Church to return to the message of the Gospel. The album was born out of Webb's frustration over the Prayer of Jabez fad, and it shows; his lyrics use strong, startling language to warn against heresies and false teachings and remind us that, in the end, the simple message of Christ's Gospel is all that we really need.

Last year he released the sequel to that album, I See Things Upside Down, an album that's more thematically scattered and musically obtuse, but still highly rewarding. His love for Wilco and U2 is a bit too obvious in places, but his lyrics are uniformly strong. Few singers are as honest and as eloquent as Webb when it comes to the hypocrisy and waywardness of Christ's people, and listening to his songs almost always leads me to shed a few tears and plea to God for a repentant heart.

All that to say, Mockingbird has immediately shot to the top of my 2005 must-hear list.

3 Comments:

Blogger David said...

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10:58 PM  
Blogger David said...

I have yet to hear ISTUD, so this news of a new release makes me eager to correct that. Interesting title on the new album, I wonder if it somehow shares themes with the book?

10:59 PM  
Blogger Eriol said...

Pardon my crankiness but Derek Webb isn't the best artist to come out of CCM, I believe Terry Scott Taylor and his bands (Daniel Amos, Lost Dogs) are superior. But of course they've been doing this since the '70's so perhaps, Leslie Phillips was the best since Taylor. Also what about Mark Heard?

3:21 PM  

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