Sound — 10
The best Sidewalk Prophets album yet. This release adds Shaun Tomczak on guitars to the Sidewalk Prophets line-up. The CD starts with a 00:39sec. calm piano prelude to the title track and radio hit "Live Like That." This album includes a diverse range of instruments: guitars (of course:), bass, mandolin, keyboard, and drums (a lot of drums). As well as strings (violin) on "Help Me Find It," "Keep Making Me," and a few others. "Love, Love, Love" is a very cool song, I don't know whether it would be classified as pop or jazz or what, but it has a "fun" element to it, like some secular pop songs. Dave Frey goes beyond his usual "screaming" style of singing and is quite calm and unlike-himself sounding in some of the tracks (specifically the first verse of "Live Like That").
Lyrics — 10
Here's what I think of each song:
01. "Hebrews 12:1 (Prelude)" - A piano instrumental with no lyrics.
02. "Live Like That" - A song that encourages us not to live for ourselves, but to let Christ live through us, so that others will see Christ in us and want to live that way also.
03. "Love, Love, Love" - Co-written with Matthew West, this song definitely has the "Matthew West style" to it. Some may say these lyrics are pointed politically, but it has a good message.
04. "Save My Life"
05. "Keep Making Me" - I couldn't relate to everything in this song, but some of the lyrics did touch me.
06. "It's Good (Love's Not Safe)" - Oh my goodness! I think that there are a lot of people who need to hear that song. If you ever think that God seems unkind, that is just to prove that God is Love!
07. "Help Me Find It" - One of my favorite songs ever! The violin on this song is beautiful, and the lyrics get to your heart in a way unlike others. No matter what you may be searching for right now (even if you're house-hunting, that's what it was for me) you need to hear this song.
08. "Heart's on Fire" - Unlike most Sidewalk Prophets' songs, this one is very calm, good lyrics, but not my favorite.
09. "Wrecking Ball" - Another great song with a title that made me curious at once. Only God can make the best of us.
10. "Nothing's Gonna Stop Us" - Nothing in this whole wide universe can separate us from the love of God. An upbeat song with a common Christian message.
11. "For You Tonight" - Yes, God is always there for us. No matter what we are going through "there is a hope/with arms open wide/for you tonight...".
12. "This Is Not Goodbye" - I am not quite sure what this song is supposed to be about. But from the lyrics it seems like it might be about having a child grow up and move out. Not quite sure though.
Overall Impression — 10
Overall, this album is great. I don't think I have a single thing I dislike, but to be objective not everybody is going to like "Love, Love, Love" or "Wrecking Ball." My personal favorite is "Help Me Find It," but I love pretty much every song on the album. Compared to other artists, Sidewalk Prophets is a somewhat generic, but also very original group. Dave Frey does have a style that is not often matched (except in the case of Matthew West, who sings in a very similar style). Unfortunately I can only rate it 10 because it deserves at least a 50. Definitely a more mature album from their 2010 album "These Simple Truths." I would most definitely buy it again!