|Powerful and moving | Posted October 15, 2013
MELODIME's newest album is called Where the Sinners & the Saints Collide. Listening to the opening tracks, “The Call” and lead single “Halo” that opens the 12-song collection, it's clear that the themes of the duality of mankind and people coming together to do good regardless of our differences runs throughout this excellent album. The Northern Virginia based band, named for “melody” mashed up with “time” is made up of Bradley Rhoades (vocals, guitar), and brothers Sammy Duis (piano, bass) and Tyler Duis (drums). The group essentially grew up in the church, with the Duis’ father serving as a pastor and Rhoades working as a worship leader at his church.
This album will have you hooked right from the opening notes of “Halo,” which really sets the tone for this album. As Christians, we can all relate to the vulnerable and sincere crying out in the bridge: “I'm building kingdoms now from this abandoned town; a severed will, restored and filled; with help from the angels I can fly now...”
“Two Strikes” is an incredibly catchy song with weighty lyrics about judgmental people. It includes the album title in the lyrics, “I walk the line with my feet on both sides; I find the blind where the sinners and the saints collide.” “Halo” was partly influenced by the demise of Sammy Duis’ marriage as was the breakup anthem “Framed Love-Suicide (Let You Go).”
“Lullaby” is a gorgeous love song, and is a moving and encouraging song, as is “Ruby Reds.” I get choked up when I pray along with the soothing lullaby-lyrics: "Let me get my words right, Let me get my feet firm on the ground…I admit I’m afraid, almost faithless At the end of day when the night hits…lullaby, lullaby, to keep me from my sleeping, ‘cause I could not stop dreaming of you."
The alt-rock edge of “Little People” frames an incredible song about the sin that comes from our pride. The song captures the irony of self-righteousness. The accuser is just as flawed as the accused. I love the emotional chorus: "Won’t you kiss Heaven for me baby, steal a cup of sugar from the angels…here’s the bitter truth that I’ve come to, for you and I, we’re all little people, itty bitty people, that’s right, but we forget from time to time."
Bradley's vocals are emotive and honest, which makes the words he's singing all the more powerful and moving. “Love Songs & Lies” is achingly beautiful, both musically and perhaps even more so lyrically. The song is about the desire to maintain the joy over the years in a relationship. The lyrics are sincere and moving, “You won’t lose this heart of mine.”
Don’t miss the blues-inflected rocker “Outlaws” and the philosophically minded ballad “Red Light, Green Light”, reflecting the album's wide range of sounds. The words, “It’s a boy, it’s a girl, it’s a hope, it’s a red light, it’s a green light” are a great metaphor for relationships. The stand-out song includes some vivid imagery, “I’ll skin my knees when the red light comes…you yell green and I’ll run, you say stop on red, but honey I’m not listenin’…It’s a talk, it’s a kiss, it’s a fight…red light, green light.” It’s that type of songwriting that sets this album on a higher level than most of what I’ve heard this year.
The last tracks really display the musical and lyrical excellence and diversity of MELODIME. As if the album wasn't amazing enough, the ending songs are as strong as the beginning with the great songs “Madman,” “Ruby Reds” and the standout anthem “City of Nothing.” The closer takes to task those who are so obsessed with their possessions that they are oblivious to the pain surrounding them. I can't think of a better way to cap off an incredible album.
Where the Sinners & the Saints Collide is one of the catchiest and most meaningful albums I've heard this year. Every song is absolutely amazing. They are taking a very unique approach with this album. The band is donating 100% of the proceeds from the sale of this record to benefit children in their own community and around the world that have a desire to play an instrument but are not afforded the opportunity to chase that dream. I can’t get the catchy melodies of many of these songs out of my head, which is perfectly produced by Rick Beato (NEEDTOBREATHE, Shinedown, Decyfer Down). Just like those excellent alt-rock bands, this album includes a solid mix of southern rock tinged music with inspirational lyrics.
Don’t miss the standout songs “Halo”, “Two Strikes”, “Little People”, “Love Songs & Lies”, “Red Light, Green Light”, “Ruby Reds” and “City of Nothing.” The very relatable and transparent words of these songs remind me of my favorite band, NEEDTOBREATHE, who also use poetic imagery to depict our daily spiritual warfare wrapped around catchy songs that you can proudly share with people of all musical tastes and preferences. This album could easily include a “satisfaction guaranteed” label. MELODIME is a band you’ll want to tell others about.
Song to download now: “Halo”- http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00EWTZ988/ref=dm_dp_trk2?ie=UTF8&qid=1381866141&sr=8-2
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