Phillips, Craig & Dean [Fearless]
Posted August 04, 2009
A crumbling economy, wars without end, new health risks, security threats, and more. The media gives us a constant stream of reasons to be afraid. But what if God’s people shined a light of eternal hope right into the face of this world’s temporary circumstances? That’s the compelling idea behind Fearless, the tenth studio album from one of today’s most respected Christian vocal groups, Phillips, Craig & Dean. Uniquely gifted and positioned in their dual roles as musicians and full-time senior pastors in three different U.S. cities, Randy Phillips, Shawn Craig and Dan Dean know well the current struggles people face and are boldly taking the opportunity to respond to them in life and song.
I’ve been collecting every album by this trio since 1997’s “Where Strength Begins” including the 2 disc “Ultimate Collection”, which is a great compilation of the best hits from 1991-2004. The albums have always been worship-filled anthems of praise including the all-time great “When God Ran” about the prodigal son and “Shine On Us”, written by Michael W. Smith. This decade has been marked by a series of worship albums containing popular songs sung in many churches today including “Let My Words Be Few” and “Let The Glory Fall”, both written by Matt Redman and “Let The Worshippers Arise”, written by Pocket Full Of Rocks. Their last album “Top Of My Lungs” was my favorite worship album of them all, with a great version of “One Way”, written by Joel Houston of Hillsong United and “Your Name”, written by Paul Baloche.
Two million records sold and eighteen No. 1 singles later, “Fearless” picks up where “Top Of My Lungs” left off, with great versions of “Counting On God”, written by Jared Anderson of Desperation Band and “From The Inside Out” by Hillsong. Those 2 songs do a great job of setting the tone of the album, which is generally upbeat and engaging, in a word “Fearless”. The next song “Revelation Song”, originally recorded by Kari Jobe of Gateway Church, is climbing the Christian charts and is a great anthem of praise. The song builds to the amazing chorus: “Holy, Holy, Holy, Is the Lord God Almighty, Who was, and is, and is to come, With all creation I sing: Praise to the King of Kings!, You are my everything, And I will adore You…!”
The rest of the album contains some new songs, some written or co-written by all 3 guys. My favorite of the new songs is “The Distance”, written by Shawn Craig. The song is a soaring anthem of grace with heart-gripping words that read like a story poem. “The idea is that God couldn’t stand the distance between us, so He came near,” Shawn explains. I love that message and the picture of grace, which continues with “When Grace Walks In”. Randy Phillips co-wrote “Spirit of God Is Here” with Paul Baloche. Dan Dean wrote “Nothing to Prove”. Closing songs “Great Are You Lord” and “Name Above All Names” feature the signature harmonies and are instantly sing-able and certainly worship-filled like the rest of the album.
The album seems familiar and catchy and if you are a long-time Phillips, Craig & Dean fan, you won’t be disappointed with “Fearless”. For me, the highlights are “Counting On God”, “From The Inside Out”, “Revelation Song” and “The Distance”.
Rating: 8.9 out of 10 (89%, B+)
Review written by: Kevin Davis | Review can also be found here.
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