Successes and Missteps
Posted October 15, 2015
By MarkRyan_NRT, Staff Reviewer
When I first received Game Changer to review, I was optimistic about hearing the latest from veteran recording artist Rawsrvnt (pronounced "Raw Servant"). I was unaware that he was a Grammy nominated artist, and learning this raised the level of expectations just a little higher.
The album starts extremely strong with tracks like "Fallin' in Love (feat. Milliyon)," "Game Changer (feat. Lil Raskull)" and "Show Me (feat. Hee Sun Lee)." It is a definite party album that you can put in the family wagon and ride to. The beats are strong, and the lyrics are uplifting. Things slow down a little with "My Music," and then things slide into an island vibe with "Won't Stop (feat. St. Matthew)."
You may be reading this now and wondering why I rated it at 2.5. The problem begins at track seven, "Light Up The Night (feat. Erica Cumbo)." Rawsrvnt describes the song as a "fun, danceable track designed to be a love letter to his bride, but he also desires for it to stretch listeners' ideas about how this type of content can be presented." In short, it is a slow jam for Christians. Rawsrvnt continues on about the track, "Instead of cheapening the value of an expression of love that was designed by God (like we hear in so many mainstream songs), I pray that people latch onto the way 'Light Up the Night' can glorify Him and stoke the fires of passion in their marriages."
This is all well and good, until he does a reboot of Robin Thicke's "Lost Without U." It is somewhat confusing that he condemns the cheapening of love that was designed by God in so many mainstream songs, and then follows that with a track with lyrics like "Baby you're the perfect shape / Baby you're the perfect weight / Treat me like my Birthday / I want it this way / I want it that way / I want it / Tell me you don't want me to stop / Tell me it would break your heart / But you love me and all my dirty." It left me disappointed and confused, and immediately dropped the album to the 2.5 star rating that I gave it.
It is hard to give what could have been a good album such a bad score, however, I could not gloss over Rawsrvnt's choice to cover a Robin Thicke song. I feel like it sets Christian hip hop back a step. I have no problem with artists getting real about issues, however, cheapening the union of man and wife to this level is unacceptable to me on too many levels, especially with the graphic sexual nature of the lyrics. I appreciate the positive impact that Rawsrvnt has had through his ministry over the years, however, this was a large misstep.
Song to Download Now:
"Game Changer" (Get it on iTunes here.)
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