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"Bebo Norman"  by Bebo Norman

Rated 3.5 Stars

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No "pull out" is needed
Posted December 03, 2008
By Nathan,

Bebo Norman’s first release as a BEC recording artists comes in the form of his eight studio project simply called Bebo Norman. Trying to stretch his musical abilities past what he was able to do previously at Essential Records, was the key to the label change which left Norman to give fans a more intricate style of music than his hit song “I will lift my eyes”.

There are actually only two real praise and worship songs on the album: the soft and simple finely, “can’t live without you” and the relatively weak “the only hope”. Aside from that the album is upbeat starting with the top ten single “pull me out” which is not really catchy but has a more upbeat pop sound that fans might be used to. The extremely hyped “Britney” starts out simply with a guitar, sounding like Chris Rice, but turns into more aggressive pop tune. “Million rain drops” is a rather artistic song, which thrives because of an emotional bridge but the really impressive bridge shows up on “ruins” where Norman’s vocals bring on inspiration and plenty of emotion.

For not being known for strong music Bobo Norman’s melodies are not bad. Of course there are some weaker songs. For example “never saw you coming” is pretty good except that it seemingly borrows from “pull me out” and “hear it from me” has a rough transition from the light verse to the more up tempo chorus. “Not living in between” is coarse in places but is a decent song while “never saw you coming” is impressive especially in the arena of the emotional refrain.

Not too much on Bebo Norman’s self titled album is too similar to “Great Light Of The World”, “Holy Is Your Name” or “I will lift my eyes” as the approach of the album isn’t praising God but a collection of songs about our desperate clinging to God in faith or being held on to. From the yearning for salvation and redemption (“Pull me out”) to our nature to do the things that would distance of from God (our only hope) to the journey of a man back to God (“ruins”); the theme of needing a savoir is very evident.

The song “Britney” is an apology to Britney Spears for the way the media and people have gone along with it. The song goes into the destruction of a young women’s life, the caution to a younger generation and hope for the future ‘I know love goes around the world we know /and you never see it coming back /but I can see it coming back for you’. Despite all of the good things that could be said about the album rough patches are “never saw you coming” which sounds hollow comparatively and “one bright hour “which assumes the Lord’s return will take place in an hour.

Bebo Norman described his music on his self titled record ‘dramatic’ and surprisingly so it’s not so far off the mark. Some of his song has a good deal of emotion as well as being artistic, lyrically and musically. It’s nice to know that artists like Norman haven’t shown fans all of the tricks in his bag, so kudos to him and here’s to many more solid releases at BEC.

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