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If I Had One Chance to Tell You Something, CD/DVD Edition
Capitol Christian Music Group / 2005 / Compact disc
$14.99 (CD Price)
Save: $4.00 (21%)
$11.99 (MP3 Album Price)
Availability: In Stock
CBD Stock No: WWCD55806
Special edition CD/DVD combo includes the entire 12 track album plus live acoustic versions of "You Are Loved" and "God Help Me," raw concert footage, and an extended photo gallery.
A truly rocking revelation
Shes untouchable. Frankly, thats how a lot of us felt about veteran songstress Rebecca St. James throughout the first leg of her spotless and somewhat cliché-prone career. We liked her: It just didnt seem as if she struggled alongside the rest of us mortalsor maybe she was just liberally sprinkled with fairy dust? There was faith, there was encouragement, there was victory in Jesus, but there wasnt a whole lot of Rebecca underneath the triumphant delivery and whitewashed words.
Until now. After a trip to LAbri and the kind of painful soul-searching that defies platitudes, she has finally given us something rawand something rock. With this record, Rebecca hits a nerveand suddenly, shes on the same level as her listeners, fragile, human, lonely, tired. She launches out with lyrics so honest, they could give even Alanis Morissette a complex: From the deep I cry/I need change in my life Im running out of time to live, running out of love to give, running out of life within God help me I dont care who stares/I never want to be what Ive been again (God Help Me). Whoa.
If her breathy vocals seemed demure in the past, against these punchier rock arrangements Rebecca pulls forth an impassioned delivery that makes the electric guitars sound tame, notably on the second track, Alive. Entwining throaty guitar riffage with an adrenaline-charged melody, the chorus locks in listeners with her first belting of You make me come alive. Just as convincing, the standout I Need You bursts forth with a ballroom string arrangement and a gentle Rebecca crooning I hide no more behind the mask/What you see is what I am, but morphs into a haunting, urgent plea that represents the emotional crux of the record. Clearly, Something very, very good is happening here.
The record then moves into more worshipful, though still unapologetically rocking, territory. The irresistible chorus of Beautiful Stranger describes hearing the voice of God calling out through the questions and pain of life. Moving piano ballad Forgive Me offers the most beautiful singing from Rebecca in recent memory. And the eighth track, Love Being Loved By You, transforms an oft-tiresome subject into a tingly worship anthem that could shake a stadium: Jesus, You are so wonderful/I cannot live without your love. Just for kicks, it would also make a mighty fine techno mix.
To be fair, the rap-inflected Thank youwhile its sincerity is undoubtedleans toward Sunday School-esque with a simplistic refrain of Thank you thank you thank you thank you, Ive got two words for you Ive got three words more than thank you/I love you. On the whole, however, this is the watershed record of Rebeccas career so far, and to miss this disc is to miss the artist she was born to be.
ANDREA BAILEY- CCMMagazine.com
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