|Tenth Avenue North [Inside & In Between] | Posted March 01, 2011
In the three years since its national label debut with Over And Underneath, Tenth Avenue North has become a radio fixture with several hit songs, “Love Is Here,” “By Your Side,” “Hold My Heart,” “Healing Begins” and has won back to back Dove Awards for New Artist of the year and Song of the year. Tenth Avenue North’s sophomore project, The Light Meets the Dark, is a great collection of confessional and authentic expressions of faith. It appears that the success of the band has allowed them to creatively express themselves and for me that has really paid off with an improved second album. The album’s themes are brokenness, healing and mercy.
Inside & In Between is a live concert recording which opens with “Love Is Here,“ one of my favorite songs of the past few years. I can't get enough of the sincere and catchy chorus "Love is here, Love is now, Love is pouring from His hands, From His brow, Love is near, It satisfies, Streams of mercy flowing from His side, Cause love is here". The song is moving and biblical. “Strong Enough To Save,” “Hold My Heart” and “You Are More” kept me hooked lyrically as Mike’s vocals are very engaging and I am able to relate to every theme. Mike’s ability to engage the crowd as a front-man is remarkable and he makes me smile just listening to his sincere and emotional comments. Mike witnesses with personal testimony and biblical truth and that is one of the highlights of the album along with great new live recordings of their biggest hit songs.
“Healing Begins” encapsulates the theme of the last album. It’s where the title of the record comes from. It’s basically about confession -- confessing your sins to one another that you might be healed, which is a scary thing to do. You can believe in God and love God, but confessing the things that you keep secret and hold on to -- that keep you tied to your past and weigh you down --confessing those things is not easy. The show closes with 2010 Song of the Year “By Your Side,” which is written as though being sweetly sung by Jesus. Lead singer Mike Donehey says: "By Your Side" is just a call to anyone who’s struggling or fighting against God thinking they have to work to earn it. It’s calling them to stop looking for what you can do for God and fix your gaze upon what God has done for you. Let that motivate you. We love because He first loved us.”
Inside & In Between is a solid live album from a band that continues to improve. All of these songs are poignant and powerful with earnest worshipful lyrics. With each new recording, the band brings a more seasoned level of musicianship and intensity, reminding me of Robbie Seay Band, Coldplay and Seabird lyrically and musically.
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