AN NRT WAYBACK EDITORIAL
Steven Curtis Chapman's 'Signs of Life' Turns 25
NRT's J.J. Francesco look back at the classics of the legendary artist's quarter-century-old album
 


AN NRT WAYBACK EDITORIAL, Steven Curtis Chapman's 'Signs of Life' Turns 25
Posted: March 25, 2021 | By: JJFrancesco_NRT
NRT Editorial RSS Feed

In 2021, it's rare to see artists even making it to their 8th full-length studio album, let alone recording it after only a decade in the business. Prolific Christian music heavyweight Steven Curtis Chapman passed this incredible milestone in 1996 with the release of the acclaimed Signs of Life

The 1990s and early 2000s were arguably the golden age for Steven, where he released new music at a remarkable rate. Each album has at least one song that became a classic. Signs of Life was no different. Now, as the album turns 25 years old, we look back at one of Steven's signature releases. Let's review the songs that have left the greatest legacy.

"Lord of the Dance"

"Lord of the Dance" was an instant classic. The song's sound blends bluegrass and soft rock into one of the most memorable hooks of '90s Christian music. Steven sings of how we need Christ to fulfill our lives in order for them to truly have meaning. This song balanced relevant themes with some of the most engaging and dynamic melodies you could find on the radio. Showing how versatile the contemporary Christian vocalist could be, this song became one of the album's most defining hits. 

 

"Signs of Life"

The album's title track finds Steven musing on the signs of life, both in terms of the little tangible things that represent life and also the deeper questions of letting the love of Christ and hope He brings us to become known to all the world.

From the 2020s perspective, the song hits even harder when Steven quips how earth has technology that an alien inhabitant would find better than anything else in the universe. Yet, we're unable to communicate with each other. If Steven saw this unsettling trend in the '90s, just imagine how much truer it is now.

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, technology had slowly captured people in its isolated bubble. Add in the distance brought about by the pandemic, and this song's themes hit all the deeper. 

Musically, the song is another Chapman anthem that will get stuck in your head all day. It may be 25 years old, but this tune carries a timely message for the people of 2021. 

 

"Let Us Pray"

Another hit, another groovy guitar hook, another Steven Curtis Chapman signature chorus. So fantastic. The verses have whimsy energy that invites the listener to get lost in the melody. The chorus practically forces the listener to sing along with hands raised in the air. Thematically, it might seem like a simple song, but like so many of Steven's pieces, there's a deeper appreciation for listeners who opt to go deeper into the lyrics. 

 

 
"Free"

Offering a more reflective and emotive single from this album, "Free" gives us a passionate exploration of the true freedom found in Christ. Steven's reassuring delivery has always imbued his music with a deeper thematic relevance, and this song is a fine example of this fact. Offering a more melodic contrast to some of the more foot-tapping hook-driven hits of the album, "Free" gave listeners a reminder that the contemporary powerhouse that Steven had become known for was still kicking. 

 

Did we miss your favorite song from this album? Tell us what your favorite memories of Signs of Life are

J.J. Francesco is a longtime contributor to the NRT Staff. He's published the novel 'Because of Austin' and regularly seeks new ways to engage faith, life, and community.

Christian Music, Devotionals, Interviews, Editorials
Phil Wickham
NEW! BEHIND THE SONG
#1077 - Phil Wickham
NRT talks about the inspiration behind Phil's latest worship anthem, "House of the Lord"
 
20 Years Of Christian Music: The Story Of NRT
NEW! #NRTWENTY EDITORIAL
The Story Of NRT
NRT's founder talks about the origins of the site that's covered Christian music for two decades
Mainstream Artists
NEW! NRT LISTS
Mainstream To Christian
Artists known to mainstream audiences who released CCM
 
Worship Covers
NEW! NRT LISTS
Best Worship Covers
A list of the best covers of "Run to the Father"
BrvndonP
NEW! THE CHH DROP
#57 - BrvndonP...
What new this week in Christian Hip Hop and Rap
 

ADVERTISEMENT

Christian Music, Facebook Christian Music, Twitter Christian Music, YouTube Christian Music, Instagram

ADVERTISEMENTS

Christian Music

©2021 NewReleaseToday
A Division Of NRT Media Inc.

Secure
CHRISTIAN MUSIC

Discover New Artists
New This Week
Coming Soon
Playlists
NEW! Podcasts
Free Music
Album Reviews

NEWS

New Music
Movies / Media
Books
Events
Tours
General

VIDEOS

Music Videos
Exclusives

EXCLUSIVES

Articles
Devotionals
Interviews
Concert Reviews
We Love Awards

MORE INFO

RSS
Privacy Policy
Terms of Use
Advertising
Staff
New Music Email
Contact

RESOURCES

Music Studies
Artist Training

CONNECT

Facebook
Twitter
Instagram
YouTube