Jars Of Clay's latest album continues the musical tradition they pioneered in earlier albums and takes it to the next level. Described as "a rare blend of innovation, artistry, ministry, and simple, good-natured fun, If I Left The Zoo features "Famous Last Words", "No One Loves Me Like You", "Collide", "Goodbye, Goodnight", and eight more songs including the hit single "Unforgetful You" premiering in the movie Drive Me Crazy.
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Changing It Up Again| Posted January 30, 2008
We are beginning to learn a little fact about this band: Do not fall in love with a particular sound because more often than not, they will change it on the next album. So is the case, again, on If I Left The Zoo, the third album from the multi-platium selling group Jars Of Clay. Zoo explores many new playing fields for the band, from Dan's lead on vocals, to the entire bands exploration of new worlds within their music. The product is an completely new sound, that confuses the fan for the first couple "listen-throughs" but they once again, as before on Much Afraid, create a sound that we can all fall in love with. Lyrically, the focus is on relationships, with God and with man. No One Loves Me Like You Do is a wonderful acoustic song that drives home a message of everlasting love. We are still waiting for another song from this band that could have as much success as Flood. So far, two albums later, we are exploring musically with the band, which may be a good thing. A wonderful new creation from an ever developing band and keeps us all on our toes.
If I Left The Zoo| Posted July 31, 2008
Jars of Clay have made yet another strong album with their third offering. So far they haven't run into a rut of similar sounding music like most artists do by this point either. They still use a plethora of instruments wonderfully put together to make unique songs to each other. Plus Dan's voice just keeps getting stronger as the years go by and the passion in it is unmistakable. Also, unlike typical JoC fashion, there are no standout tunes. There is nothing that's so catchy you have to hear it over and over again. Instead the whole album works together as one piece of art and each song compliments the next. This is ultimately what making an album should be about in my eyes (ears?). Sure, there's a few upbeat songs here and some ballads there, but they are like none I've heard before. I suppose this is the album that shows JoC becoming less 'poppy' and more subtle.
That said, there is a different JoC staple here. Upon listening to the album you'll feel refreshed and uplifted, which is also how it should be. They aren't preachy, necessarily, but rather they just evoke an uplifting spirit in their music and the lyrics aren't depressing. After going through their discography I still find this to be one of their best albums as a whole. Their constant progression is what has helped them stand the test of time.
Gems of this album are: 'River Constantine', 'I'm Alright', 'No One Loves Me Like You'
Very Good Album| Posted September 29, 2010
Strange name for an album, If I Left the Zoo makes up for it with its great songs and tunes! Jars of Clay does a great job with their third album and write their songs as if they have been doing this for years longer than they have. Goodbye, Goodnight is a quiet song with a catchy tune. I did not expect the album to start off with a song like this, but I have to admit that it was a good choice. Unforgetful You is another great song which is more upbeat. Collide, No One Loves Me Like You, and Famous Last Words keep the momentum going with good messages and tunes. Sad Clown is a very slow song which some audiences may still like. The next song, Hand, is very good and catchy. I'm Alright is upbeat and fun. Grace is one of my favorites from the album as it is very catchy. Can't Erase It is also a good, pretty catchy song. River Constantine slowly ends the album.
The Good: Goodbye, Goodnight is a very good song. So is Unforgetful You and Grace. These are my favorites from the album.
The Bad: Sad Clown will not be enjoyed by most people unless you enjoy very slow songs or like the lyrics. River Constantine isn't that great either, but as it is the last song on the album, we must give it a break.
Conclusion: This was a great album by Jars of Clay. Considering that this was just their third album, it is pretty amazing how well they did at it. I give this album 4 1/2 stars for a good reason, and that reason is because it totally deserves it!
:)| Posted July 18, 2009
I liked "Unforgetful You" and "Can't Erase It" best. Jars of Clay's lyrics are very unique and interesting. The chorus structure is also interesting since they frequently use choruses of a couple of lines only and non-rhyming.