Thursday, March 21, 2013

Love Is Stronger - Jason Crabb - CD Review

Jason Crabb released his sophomore solo project Love Is Stronger on March 12, 2013. Jason came off a great year last year being named as Male Vocalist of the Year and Artist of the Year at the Dove Awards. Jason has become not only one of the top artists in Southern Gospel but all of Christian music.

Jason branches outside Southern Gospel for this project, but for those who enjoy Jason's style and his first solo project will love this one.

"What the Blood Is For" - This is my favorite song from the album. It's also his first single. While stylistically it might not be typical southern gospel, the message of the cross and the gospel is undeniable. It's such a power song!

"Let Mercy Hold You" - This song has more of a pop feel, but the song has a great message that listeners should not overlook. Incredible song and incredible lyrics, definitely one of the standout songs on the album!

"Love Is Stronger" - Jason sang this at the Tracy Stuffle Benefit concert on March 19. He explained how this song reminded him of a situation he and his wife and how she was overcoming some health problems. It was such a touching moment  with him singing it for Libbi and Tracy and how much it applied to them as well. During my initial listening, this wasn't a standout song to me, and I'm not sure why because now it's been on repeat several times. However, after hearing it live in that setting and the sweet story of how it fit Jason and Shellye, it took on a whole new meaning.

"Satisfied" is raw Jason Crabb. The simple arrangement really shows off his vocals and lets the emotions and and feeling of the song come through. Beautiful song!

On "Living Life Upside Down," Jason delivers a more country performance on this song. The project is filled with mostly slower tempo songs, so this uptempo song is a nice break. "God's up to Something" is another uptempo song that stands out. To me this one sounds more Crabb Family style and one that could have been on their last album released in 2012. The same goes for "Give." With these more country songs, I wonder if one will also be released on mainstream country radio. "God's up to Something" would be my preference.

Kari Jobe teams up with Jason Crabb on "Love Wins." This duet is incredible, their voices are great together. Michael English and Joyce Martin Sanders also lend their vocals to this project on "There's Not a Crown (Without a Cross)."

Album Rating - 4.75 stars - If you are strictly Southern Gospel and a more traditional style fan, this might not be your favorite project, but don't let the style prohibit you from enjoying an amazing project that's full of the gospel message. Jason is such a dynamic vocalist. Song selection is diverse, which really adds to the project and shows what Jason can do. And he can do it all, his voice really fits all the styles represented on Love Is Stronger. It's definitely a must-buy of the year, and I suspect it will be among the top of albums released in 2013.

Song List:

1. "Give"
2. "What the Blood Is For" **
3. "Let Mercy Hold You" **
4. "Living Life Upside Down"
5. "Love Is Stronger" **
6. "Morning"
7. "There's Not a Crown (Without a Cross)
8. "God's up to Something" **
9. "Love Wins" **
10. "Near"
11. "Satisfied" **

** personal favorites

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