After much anticipation, David Crowder will finally release solo album, Neon Steeple, under his new moniker "Crowder" this May.
When asked about the new sound Crowder stated in a press release, "...everything you need to know about the sound of the thing is right there in the word. It's like porch music meets computer music... I need the porch and the computer all in something. I need folktronica, it's what I need. And you do too.
For such a progressive and trendy sound, the album's overall message is very old school church. It is about this return to church and to Jesus and His redeeming love and grace. It's a modern take on those classic outdoor church revival services that happened under big white tents.
The intro begins with a Bob Dylan like opening, where he starts a narrative. The rest of the album loosely follows the theme of going back to church.
The next couple of songs are upbeat tunes that truly blend the folk and electronica seamlessly. The lyrics are praising the goodness and joy of the saving message of the Gospel. The track "Come Alive" is definitely a song that will make you want to dance in celebration of the resurrection of Jesus and being born again in the new life God has given to us.
There is a transition in sound after the bluesy-rock track, "Lift Your Weary Head Sinner (Chains)" which goes into more solemn and slower songs such as "Come As You Are," "My Sweet Lord" with Emmylou Harris, and "This I Know."
There a few throwbacks in some of these tracks as well. In "Hands of Love," Crowder layers the classic Sunday school song, "He's Got the Whole World in HIs Hands." "Jesus is Calling" is a straight up country song reminiscent of those Gaither Homecomings and traveling southern gospel four part harmony groups both in sound and in lyrics.
The next couple of songs are upbeat and go well with Easter, especially folk tune "Ain't No Grave" and the electronic "You Are."
The last song, "Here's My Heart" is a simple prayer to open one's heart so that God could speak truth. The story of Neon Steeple's, ends with the listener finally being found and made whole in Christ.
Only a musical and worship filled creative mind such as David Crowder could pull such an album like this and make it work.
Catch Crowder's Neon Steeple in stores and online on May 27.