Trying To Fit The Ocean In A Cup
Josh Josh Wilson's latest release "Trying To Fit The Ocean In A Cup", is definitely something to take notice of. It seems Wilson has the seemingly rare ability to stay positive without sounding happy-go-lucky....
TobyMac If you can't tell by my username, I'm a rather large fan of tobyMac. So I was obviously anticipating this album more than anything else that entire year. It was something that was the beginning and end...
Summer's Best Album | Posted May-22-2009
For those of you with A.D.D,. I'll make this review short and simple. If you disliked the original Dance Or Die album, you'll hate this. If you liked Dance Or Die, you will probably love this.
I'll explain it for those of you with longer attention spans. But I should probably tell you that I may just be a tad biased in a couple different ways.
First, I am now officially a fan of Family Force 5. I actually met them at a music festival before they were famous, but I missed their show. I later heard their song "Love Addict" without even realizing it was them. I then heard their first album Business Up Front/Party In The Back. I thought they had some potential and it would be worth to keep an eye on them. Dance Or Die came out and I started to really enjoy them. Dance Or Die With A Vengeance hit the streets, and I consider myself a fan.
Second, I like remixes. Well, I like good remixes. I'm inclined to enjoy dance/techno/trance/hip-hop/club type music, and remixes tend to accomplish that. People like tobyMac have come out with remix albums and they're all very hit-and-miss. Some are good. Some are not.
DODWAV is good.
I like the fact that they went through and remixed the entire album, song for song. Because of the usual nature of remixes, this album is even more dance oriented than the original album. Because of my own personal music taste, I actually might enjoy DODWAV more than DOD. It's definitely well made. It's definitely fun. It's definitely worth the buy.
They brought in people from bands such as 3OH!3, Cobra Starship, The Secret Handshake, and even David Crowder Band. But maybe my favorite song mixed by someone not in the band would be "Wake The Dead" made by Solomon "Soul Glow Activator" Olds' own wife, Lauren Olds. Some songs are definitely better than others, but most are consistently good. I would even consider others excellent.
All that being said, my absolute favorite part of the album is the new track "Ghostride The Whip." It's simply a fun song. Not anything spiritual about it, just a track that you can move to. It's pretty much a rap track, maybe even "gangster" rap if you wanted to call it that. It's something I've never heard from FF5 before. I love it. If they marketed it correctly, I honestly believe it could quickly become a hit on the radio. Though I adore the track, it's fun to listen to, sing along with, and sometimes even causes me to bust a move, I wouldn't want the band to go that direction. It's great to have them give us a little variety in the music, but I just hope they continue in their unique crunk rock style.
It's solid. | Posted August-01-2008
Josh Wilson's latest release "Trying To Fit The Ocean In A Cup", is definitely something to take notice of. It seems Wilson has the seemingly rare ability to stay positive without sounding happy-go-lucky. He can also address human issues without becoming emo. Such a compromise has become fairly hard to come by in recent years.
He starts off this new studio release with "The Saints". A solid song, one that indicates obvious potential for the following 10 tracks.
Some of the highlights of this album can be fond in the songs "Savior Please" a song about learning to rely on God because we can't handle this life on our own, "Let Me Love You" a track simply stating that we should allow God to love us for who we are, and "Beautiful Like This" the song consisting of adoration and awe of God for the way he loves us.
My personal favorite track probably has to be "Something's Got to Change", simply for its honest lyrics. This particular track ensured that I enjoyed this album. It expresses mankind's desire to find meaning in life, and how we try to fill the void with things that will never be up to the task. Deep down inside we all know that we can't numb the pain ourselves. In the end he explains how we need to put our selfish pride away and call out to God for help. It's so true, and very well put together. I'd recommend buying the album just because of this song.
Throughout the album you can just feel his passion for writing songs that relate to all of us, and can help build us up in one way or another. Just from listening to his music, I feel confident saying his heart is in the right place. I'm not one to jump on the bandwagon and listen to the popular music of the day. But, even though quite a few songs seem to have potential to become Christian radio favorites, I still enjoyed it.
However, at certain points, I had to question his songwriting ability. Some of his similes and metaphors such as "like flying around the world to get across the street", and even the line he got the title from "it's like trying to fit the ocean in a cup", seem to fall flat. It reminds me of Chris Rice's "Smell The Color 9". It probably sounded good when he wrote it, but it seems rather cheesy to me. But, then again, Chris Rice's song became popular, so maybe it's just a style preference.
I also had an issue with "Dear Money". I found his reference to money as an actual character, at the very least, a little odd. It's my opinion that he could have omitted that song and would have been just fine.
Probably his most famous track at the moment, "3 Minute Song", gives me mixed emotions. I've heard people complain about it being "really corny", but I somehow find it fairly catchy. It definitely has good thought behind it, and delivers a good message. It portrays the idea that we can't possibly define God, especially in a 3 minute song. Which is very true, considering how we can't even imagine putting God in a box. I would find it really easy to believe that many Christian writers struggle with that issue, I'm just not entirely sure he delivered it in the best song form he could have.
At times he seems to try too hard to get his point across, even at the expense of proper melody. I found just a few instances where he had a couple extra words, which then made the song feel somewhat cluttered. One example of this is in his "3 Minute Song" when he adds "or maybe four" to the end of a line in the bridge. I'm guessing the song would have sounded better without those three words.
In the end of it all, I think it's a good album, and I'm glad I have it. On the 11 song track listing, you can definitely find quite a few gems. It may not be my favorite album of all time, but I do believe it's a very solid record telling me to keep on eye on this guy. If you're a fan of the acoustic/folk genre, I would quickly recommend picking it up.
It's was a rollercoaster ride for me. | Posted June-29-2008
If you can't tell by my username, I'm a rather large fan of tobyMac. So I was obviously anticipating this album more than anything else that entire year. It was something that was the beginning and end of my calendar.
Portable Sounds is a very cleverly unique album. It's from toby, so what did I expect? He can't be put into a box, and this third album just pushed even farther from any genre lines, it's not even funny.
When I first got it, I immediately started listening. The second song, "Made To Love" (the first single from the album), had been playing on the radio station for quite some time, so I knew what that was all about. I liked that song.
There were a few others that I fell in love with as soon as I heard them. "No Ordinary Love" just has a great sound, along with a great lyrical meaning. "Face of the Earth" has a more down to earth feel, a bit more emotional, I enjoyed that from toby. "Ignition" blew me away at first listen. But some of the other songs I didn't take to right away. For example,the album's opening song "One World" seemed a little to 'in your face' and abrupt.
It had to grow on me, though, it just had to. AND it did. I now enjoy all the songs. I can find the album on my mp3 player, and listen to it all the way through without having to skip any songs.
If you haven't yet bought it, I encourage you to. Just be aware, it's not the same as any his other projects. But then again, you weren't really expecting that, were you? You may love it right away, or it may have to grow on you. But I can almost promise, you will love it.
Worth Every Penny | Posted June-24-2008
Not surprisingly, this CD/DVD combo is quite remarkable. If you've ever had the priviledge of seeing tobyMac perform, you would know that he puts an incredibly exciting, energetic, and fun show. Some choegraphy, but not so much you get sick. He doesn't just sit there and sing a couple songs from his albums, but he mixes it up and will change a song so it can better fit a live show. He even throws in a few songs from his earlier dcTalk days. Considering all this, you just know this is something you must own.
The CD itself is quite a surprise. Usually a live recording will have sound errors and be hard to listen to, but not this one. It has a clean sound that is pleasant to listen to. Obviously, it's not studio quality, but it's not bad. It's very well made and is a fun listen. I'm not always a fan of live CDs, but this one is a must-have. I actually wasn't able to take it out of my stereo for a whole week after I ripped it out of the packaging the day it was released. The best part? If you watch the DVD first you can almost visualize the concert as you listen to the CD.
Oh, yeah, I should probably mention the DVD, considering it may very well be the better half. As I mentioned earlier, tobyMac's live shows are just amazing! Even if you don't like toby's music, you will probably enjoy his concert. The Diverse City Band just does a great job of making that happen. Now that we have the ability to watch them all perform whenever we so please, it's just great. I can't help but move around and sing along as I watch it. I'm sure that if you like to have fun at all, you would enjoy this DVD.
Besides the concert footage, the DVD contains some additional features. These clips just make it twice as good. Some introduce you to the different members of the band, while others are just fun to watch and laugh at. I would actually pay to buy this on a serperate DVD if necessary. The fact they give it to you one one disc is a fantastic deal.
Overall, it's just a great buy and I'd recommend it to anyone.