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A Refreshing Worship Experience
Posted June 13, 2011
By abluvsu,

Aaron Keyes is currently serving as a worship pastor just outside of Atlanta, Georgia. He has a heart to restore the meaning of worship and living out the words we sing. It is evident through the songs on his sophomore project, Dwell, that God is using his music to minister to the hearts of His people. The theme of the album is getting to know God’s awesome character better so we can constantly dwell in His presence. The lyrics are pure truth; a lot of them come straight from Scripture. The vocals are consistent and beautiful. In some parts Aaron’s voice reminds me of Brandon Heath’s. However he doesn’t seem to use a lot of variation in his vocals or stretch his vocal abilities, which results in chorsus that are easy to follow but tends to become a tad monotonous. However the instruments are just as beautiful as the messages and on the whole, Dwell is one of the best worship albums I have heard in a long time.

Dwell starts off with “O My Soul.” It is a song that talks about God’s praiseworthy character. “Boundless love has won the day/ the sin of man is washed away.” It is a call to rise together in worship. Instrumentally, the song doesn’t lack.

"I Am Not The Same” is an encouraging song about the fact that we are new creations through Jesus. It reminds us to live out this new life we have so graciously been given. This song is a little more electric sounding and has an energizing sound. Also during the chorus the background choir vocals really come through. This gives it a family of God sort of feel.

“Sovereign Over Us” is a great reminder. It is about God’s faithfulness in every part of our lives and that He has not forgotten us. The chorus is catchy and easy to sing along with. “Even what the enemy means for evil / You turn it for our good / You turn it for our good / And for Your glory / Even in the valley You are faithful/ You’re working for our good / You’re working for our good / And for Your glory” I find this bridge running through my head throughout the day. The piano has a large part in this song; all the instruments complement each other very well.

“Song of Moses” is a simple song of praise. It has a slower tempo and a softer sound overall. This is a song I can imagine that almost any church’s praise team could learn and use to lead others in worship.

“Dwell” is based on Psalm 91, taking shelter in the shadow of the Almighty. The bridge repeats “No weapon formed against me will prosper says the Lord” In this song, there are a lot of different instruments used that work together to set the tone of the song; each instrument seems to have its own part.

“In the Name of God” is a cry out to God. This song seems to have a more intimate feel to it and reminds that there is no time that we cannot boldly approach the throne. It has a slower tempo and a lot of strings are used.

“Only Just Begun” is a reminder that God has only revealed a small part of His full character but we can still desire and grow to know Him. He is transcendent and knowable which is some sort of a paradox. It really makes you think about the awesome God that we can know if we choose to seek Him. The song starts out “Now unto Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all we ask or imagine/ to Him be the glory”. This song has somewhat of a pop feel to it and the beat is catchy.

“Sinless Savior” is a song about the death and resurrection of Jesus. It reminds us of the perfect sacrifice that He willingly made for us. The chorus sings “He is Jesus / sinless Savior / the spotless Redeemer of man / He is Jesus / God is With Us / All glory all praise to the Lamb.” Instrumentally, this song is amazing. The timing of each one coming in and out throughout the song really makes the song more impactful.

“Life Without My God” reminds us that life without God is not worth living. It is different from all the other songs on the album. It is a bit more upbeat and has a rock feel to it in some parts. I am glad that this song is on the album because it mixes things up a bit.

“Raised Me Up” is also unique. It starts off with a cappella then leads into an upbeat song of praise to God for deliverance and faithfulness. 
“Every Knee Will Bow Down” is a paraphrase of Philippians 2:5-11. It is very encouraging to listen to this song and think about the humility and victory of Jesus. I can see this song hitting the top of the contemporary worship music list.
“Hope Is Dawning” is a soft song of hope. Aaron’s vocals are sweet and gentle which really adds to the meaning of the song. The pre-chorus says, “Open up our eyes to see Your glory all around.”
“Lavish” is a fun, fast-paced song. It talks about God relentlessly blessing His children. It also adds a little variety to the sound of the album.
Aaron has made a few of the lyrics and chords available at his website, “Dwell,” “I Am Not The Same,” “Song of Moses,” and “Sovereign Over Us” are all available. Aaron and his wife lead a worship school several months during the year so that they can help train up worship leaders that are founded in the word of God. I think this is really neat and you can find more information on his website about it if you are interested in attending.
Closing Thoughts:
The songs on Dwell are all original and in a sea of artists redoing the same songs over and over, Aaron leads his listeners in a very refreshing worship experience. This is a very solid album that I would recommend to anyone who is looking for great worship music to listen to or even to lead others in. God is definitely working through Aaron and his worship ministry.

-- Abby Trumbull,

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