|MIKESCHAIR [A Beautiful Life] | Posted August 22, 2011
Following in the footsteps of the group's massive hit, "Let The Waters Rise" and 4 Dove Award nominations for their debut album, MIKESCHAIR returns with their Curb sophomore release, A Beautiful Life. The new album features the hit, "Someone Worth Dying For" along with melodic rock tracks that the group is quickly becoming known for. Additional standout tracks include "A Beautiful Life" and "All For You." The origin of MIKESCHAIR was set in a freshman guy's dorm room one night at Belmont University in Nashville, TN. The band's name, MIKESCHAIR, begs for an explanation. "The 'chair' was the central gathering point where we got our start," says Sam. "All of us lived on the same floor of our dorm at Belmont, except for Mike. But, since he was always hanging out with us on our floor, we decided to get him piece of furniture to make him feel a little more at home. The chair was his only piece of property on our floor. He wrote his name on it in big capital letters, and it kind of became his seat of inspiration for writing songs and being creative. The name is a reminder of our humble beginnings and how far God has brought us."
The opening title track, "A Beautiful Life" sets the tone for the album musically and with the encouraging message that as Christians Jesus calls us to a beautiful life in Him with these uplifting words, “A beautiful life is unfolding before my eyes, just like the sunrise, to fill the empty skies, so shine your beautiful life.” A popular musical style the past few years has been OneRepublic’s style of electronic pop/rock. Recent hit songs “Galaxies” by Owl City, “Come Home” by Luminate, “Your Love” by Brandon Heath, “Light Up The Sky” by The Afters and “I Will Follow” by Chris Tomlin all feature that musical style. This album is in the same class with all of those successful releases, yet for me has the most catchy melodies and prayerful lyrics of that esteemed class of songs as best evidenced by the surefire hit song “Love Won’t Quit On Us.” I can’t get enough of the hooky melody and the super-encouraging message of the song with the great lyrics, “Don’t quit on love, because you’re broken, don’t quit on hope, you’re not hopeless, you know the sun will rise again, this is not the end, I know this complicated world gets you down, don’t give up, don’t give up, don’t quit on Love, because Love won’t quit on us, He won’t quit on us.” Amen. That type of encouragement is found throughout this extremely catchy and uplifting album.
The highlight of the album for me is the current hit song, "Someone Worth Dying For." We can all relate to one of the situations beautifully described in the song, wife, man, son and girl, all “praying God can You hear me? Oh God are You listening? Am I really something beautiful? Jesus help me believe that I’m someone worth dying for.” Not only are those lyrics penetrating and sincere, but Mike’s passionate vocals bring it home with the incredible bridge, “You’re worth it, you can’t earn it, yeah the Cross has proven, That you’re sacred and blameless, your life has purpose.” I can’t help but get welled up when I sing along with this song at the top of my lungs. That is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He came to die for us and our sins, and we are all “someone worth dying for.” Amen. “You Loved Me First” is yet another catchy song filled with biblical Truth. Another highlight is the vertical praise and worship song “All For You.” I would love to sing this song with fellow believers and the song has become one of my personal worship anthems. It is also the prayer of my heart that I do everything in my life for the Glory of God. I really connect to the sincere prayer—“it’s All for You, All for You, every heart will proclaim, every tongue will shout Your praise, all for You.” Closing track “Gonna See Your Kingdom” is a great final song which knits together the cohesive themes of the album. As believers, we are called to fight for the broken, hold onto love, and reach for the lonely. This whole album is very encouraging and always stays true to themes of hope, faithfulness and praise to our Great God.
I have greatly enjoyed MIKESCHAIR’s debut album for the past two years which yielded four consecutive hits, “Can’t Take Away,” “Let The Waters Rise,” “Keep Changing The World” and “Straight To Your Heart.” If you enjoyed the debut album, then don’t hesitate to pick up A Beautiful Life immediately, which takes it up a notch in my opinion. Mike Grayson’s vocals are stronger than ever and the encouraging and prayerful themes of this album are catchy, emotional and inspirational. Don’t miss out on the standout tracks "A Beautiful Life," “Love Won’t Quit On Us,” "Someone Worth Dying For," “You Loved Me First” and "All For You.” I fully expect several GMA Dove Award nominations for group, pop/contemporary album/song and one of my selections for song of the year, "Someone Worth Dying For."
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