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Out of the Caves, Into the Light
Posted August 19, 2016
By PhillFeltham_NRT, Staff Reviewer

Josh McCabe was once a pastor at Carruthers Creek Community Church (C4). During his tenure, God used McCabe to significantly grow C4's youth ministry through music. McCabe was one of the musical masterminds behind C4's highly successful Nine O Five Ministry. Besides being aware of his pastoral work, I knew that McCabe himself was talented musically. To what degree, I wasn't sure--it wasn't until I heard McCabe's worship project Caves, created with friend Matt Shaban, that I experienced his true musical talents.

McCabe and Shaban dropped Caves' self-titled debut album in 2015 to much acclaim. The duo recorded tracks with Amanda Cook of Bethel ("My God") and multi-genre superstar Aaron Gillespie ("Take All Our Titles"). 

Truthfully, I shied away from listening to Caves initially because I thought it would be just another collection of worship covers. I was wrong. Most songs on the album are originals, with the exception of Delirious?'s "Obsession" and a fantastic cover of John Mark McMillan's "King of My Heart," the latter being recently released on Caves (Deluxe Edition)

Caves (Deluxe Edition) has three bonus tracks: "My God (Radio Edit)," "Take All Our Titles (Live)" and the previously mentioned "King of My Heart," the album's only new song. In the faster-paced "My God," Amanda Cook and McCabe sing together intimately and honestly words of praise to our loving God: "I need you more than the air I'm breathing / My God / Heaven let your rain fall / My love / My God." McCabe and Shaban use only vocals and an acoustic guitar for "Take All Our Titles (Live)." It is a beautiful song, but it feels too long, and McCabe speaking to the live crowd disrupts the song's flow.

I would have liked to see McCabe and Shaban record a faster-paced rock version of "Trust," my favourite song on the album. McCabe's soft vocals, playing only with an acoustic guitar, brings atmosphere to the song's reverent lyrics: "I've seen failure, I've seen favor / In this ever raging war / So help me, God, to trust you even more." "Trust" really speaks to me on a personal level.

The Bottom Line: Deluxe editions can either complement or diminish an album's release. In this case, the three bonus tracks enhance an already jam packed musical effort and help to balance the album nicely. 

Songs to Download Now:
"King of My Heart" (Get it on iTunes here.)

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