Things that last are often those that are allowed to grow naturally: organic talent that develops over time, nurtured along by the love of family and friends, spread by means of a grassroots effort and good old-fashioned word of mouth. That is the story of the band Chasen. With gifts honed by nearly a decade as a woship pastor, Chasen Challahan, lead singer for Chasen, built a following one person at a time while simultaneously shaping his craft as a songwriter. The band is poised to continue that growth with That Was Then, This Is Now, a melodically-driven, pop-rock musical journey that includes both upbeat tracks and worshipful moments with a clear directional focus towards God.
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The Verdict Is?| Posted August 12, 2010
It is one thing to discus reviewing an album with someone else who reviews albums, but it a whole new picture when you actually have the chance to speak to an artist about reviewing thier own album --that changes things.
I had the priveldge of meeting the band Chasen a few months back and having a short discusion with band member Even Silver, about what it meant to review an album. The overall conclusion that we both have come to as that there is a fine line between 'knit picking' and a solid review, this is something that I had in mind as I picked up thier album and gave it a listen. It sure wasn't long before I realized that I wasn't nessesarly going to have a lot to 'critisize' on this album...
starts off solid with 'Castaway' and leads into 'Love In Your Name'. 'On And On' lands the cut as track three and is one of my favorites on the entire album. 'Leave You Alone' carries a powerful message with a very catchy chorus while 'Airplaines' showcases this band musical talent, vocally and lyrically.
'One In A Million' and 'Bullet' would both make outstanding CR radio singles while I can see the very melodic and beatiful 'Eyes Of A Rescue' on more of a CHR format. This album boasts a handful of songs that would play great on stage as well as from any radio station.
The string sections on 'Slow Down' will blow your mind, while the album comes to an all too soon close with the moving 'There Is Love', speaking the many forms that we love, from or God to us and from the love He gives us for others, a calming and wonderful way to end such an amazing album.
I found myself listening to this album over and over after I got it, and Chasen has since become a favorite band of mine. This is great for the person who love bands like The Afters and Leeland, but I encourage everyone to give this band a listen, you'll be glad that you did.
BRIGHT NEW TALENT RECORDS FINE SHOWCASE| Posted March 23, 2010
Arena-worthy hooks? Check. Sophisticated production? Check. Chart-topping lead single? Check. New Artist of the Year Dove trophy? Well, not yet. But with significant indie success and a major label launch any band would envy, worship-tinted, pop/rock band, Chasen, is poised to be Christian music's next big thing. And after listening through their first national CD release, That Was Then, This is Now, it's easy to see why.
Courting instantly recognizable melodies over layered tracks of sonic goodness, the Greenville, SC-based band offers enough gloss to access a legion of pop fans while inserting a good amount of grit to pique the interest of rock die-hards. For instance, "Castaway" kicks off the record with a full throttle anthem for second chances and "Love in Your Name" keeps the fuel burning before settling into the lead single, "On and On," already #1 at radio, and an obviously successful balance of melody and lyric with its message of God's undying love in spite of our faith and subsequent discontent with worldly possessions.
Roots rock-tinged "Airplanes" a la Train blends driving acoustic guitars, strings and a full-fledge chorus to lyrically cope with the loss of loved ones, creating one a track listing highlight. A hard-hitting string quartet introduces the addictive rock ballad, "Slow Down" an encouragement to wait on the Redeemer for restoration and peace, and the acoustic-driven album closer, "There is Love," parallels the love for our earthly families with the love of God for his children.
Having successful co-writes recorded by Addison Road and Stellar Kart, front man and band namesake, Chase Callahan continues to prove his pen as a recipe for success. Whether it is his extensive observations of songs that communicate well as a worship leader for his home mega-church, or having received support from fellow Carolinian, Edwin McCain, and heavy influence from Christian music mainstays, Switchfoot and David Crowder, Callahan and producer Rob Hawkins (Fireflight) have created a standout new artist recording by what appears to be one of Christian music's rising stars. -Andrew Greer
This review has been reprinted on NRT with permission from CCMMagazine.com. Click here to visit CCMMagazine.com today!
Music Review: That Was Then, This Is Now| Posted March 23, 2010
By Lydia Akinola
GENRE: ALTERNATIVE ROCK
LABEL: INO RECORDS
RELEASE DATE: MARCH 9, 2010
RATING: 3.75 OUT OF 5
The first major label debut LP is always a big deal for indie bands- it is the beginning of something completely new- navigating the music world as a signed group is very different from being an independent go-alone. For their listeners, it can be an even bigger deal, as every process is streamlined and production becomes slicker, and the whole sound of a band can change. Chasen, named after their lead singer, were that indie group—and That Was Then, This Is Now is that debut, and as a listener- I think, that on the whole, this could be the start of something interesting.
“Castaway” is the album’s opener; its pleasant piano intro leads into a strong pop-rock tune with discerning, insightful lyrics- “My victories are bittersweet/ And now I can tell/ The only place my plans have lead me/ Is right where I fell”. Despite the potential for clichéd pitfalls, Chasen begin firmly on the right track. This is confirmed in “Love In Your Name” with its hooks and compelling vocals, and cemented again in “On & On”. That Was Then, This Is Now is undeniably ‘pop-rock’, for those who dislike it, won’t find a lot to love here, but for fans of Run Kid Run or Stellar Kart, this effort is well worth your time.
Chasen is unashamedly Christian, and in a ‘cool’ genre where ambiguity can be seen as the norm, their blatantly Christian voice is refreshing. Whilst they profess their faith, they have managed not to compromise on originality and artistry, and this is to be commended. For example, “Leave You Alone” is a track about God’s persistent nature despite our masquerading –instead of sounding trite, the message lingers because of the beautiful piano-drive tune. “Bullet” is Chasen’s take on a worship anthem, and it works amazingly well, showing the influence of Chasen Callahan’s years in worship ministry.
That Was Then, This Is Now is a very personal album for Chasen and this adds to the overall rich experience. Behind each track there is a story, and this adds depth, giving the invaluable extra ingredient that mere strong musicianship cannot substitute. “There Is Love” was written drawing from C’shasen Callahan experience of love for his family. The profound “Slow Down” begins with “You see all of the pieces /But I see a life I can mold/You see a bunch of blank pages/But I see potential untold” and was inspired by a conversation Callahan had with his mother on a rough day about the comfort and peace found in Christ.
With Switchfoot, David Crowder*Band and Hillsong all cited as influences, Chasen have chosen the right masters from which to learn the trade. As they continue to develop, move on and progress, as this ‘now’ becomes another ‘then’, they will be able to further meld their talent, and hopefully find their own edge and build more distinctive elements into their music. But for now, That Was Then, This Is Now could prove to be the beginning of something rather special.
Review copy provided courtesy of INO Records
This review has been reprinted on NRT with permission from The Christian Manifesto. Click here to visit TheChristianManifesto.com today!
:)| Posted May 18, 2010
It's no surprise that Chasen's lyrics are deep; the flavor of a stew is always improved by simmering. And
indeed, that is what Chasen Callahan did. He's the meat. After throwing in a few vegetables (Evan, Jared,
Aaron - sorry if you think that's a bad analogy!), and the all-important broth (God - surrounding and
basting), you come up with something wonderful. The latest creation? That Was Then This Is Now, a
stirring album blending praise with prayers.
"Love In Your Name" is one of those "cry of one's heart" anthems that has the potential to be a church
favorite. One thing that's surprisingly refreshing; although the chorus alludes to it,("There’s one thing that
I know/For every searching soul/There is love In Your Name/Love In Your name Jesus") the second verse
doesn't turn the song into another "Be the hands and feet of Jesus" tune. Instead, Chasen praises Jesus
throughout. I'm not saying there's anything wrong with a song that encourages works; however, it's rather
predictable in a song that starts out this way.
"On and On" reminds us that no matter what happens in this world, we still have Christ's love for us to
cling to. The lightheartedness of "Leave You Alone" struck me as strange because I wondered if the sad
person being encouraged would respond to a song that carefree sounding? I guess it's just more proof
that message trumps music. "One In Million" is a simple enough song that seems longer than its 2
minutes 45 seconds. I could see a tween band covering this because it's the kind of message kid-
focused music is replete with. I get the feeling "Bullet" must be killer live; it has that kind of infectious,
pump-up-the-crowd energy to it. I can definitely see the Hillsong influence here. The title seems an odd
choice, as the word "bullet" is only mentioned once. "Let it ring", however, follows each verse. God takes
the mike in "Slow Down", a triumphant song of rest (if there is such a thing) that could best be described
as Jesus giving you a Snuggie and a cup of hot cocoa, setting you down by a fire and moving your heart. If
Chasen ever makes a music video for "There Is Love", a campfire in a clearing would be a lovely setting
I have no doubt that That Was Then This Is Now will occupy a prominent place in your top albums of 2010
by the end of the year. Whether you’ve found your identity in Christ or are still seeking, Chasen's new
music will warm and encourage your heart.
I truly enjoyed this CD...| Posted May 05, 2010
I had never heard of Chasen before a couple of months ago when a close friend of mine had introduced me to them. I listened to their first CD and really enjoyed it. Their sound was different that I was use to hearing. When this new CD came out I was excited to see what they had come up with. I truly enjoyed this CD and find myself constantly coming back to it when I'm looking for something to listen to. Their sound has matured since their last album, and I think that their new songs are really catchy. I will definitely be recommending this band to my friends!
No sophmore slump here.| Posted March 09, 2010
If you are looking for another "Crazy Beautiful" don't look for it on this CD. Rather anticipate a more mature sound from Chasen and crew. What I love most about this CD is the strings and pianos, let alone the lyrics to the songs. This CD is truly fanastic. If you don't know Chasen, you will shorlty not be able to get them out of your heads. Amazing!
Great Songs!| Posted March 04, 2010
I totally agree with jessielauren! I love the song 'on and on'. I just heard it on the radio today and plan on getting it on my Ipod. =) It's such an amazing song!!!
yeah!| Posted February 28, 2010
the song "on and on" is absolutely amazing, as well as everything else chasen does. check this out - you will NOT be disappointed! they have a heart to serve God and amazing music!