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Point Of Grace - Steady On...

Review by Paul M. Carhart
Originally published in The Lighthouse Electronic Magazine (TLeM)


They have fifteen consecutive number one singles over the course of three albums that span five years, not to mention countless awards. That's an average of five hits an album or three hits every year. Indeed, the unprecedented success of Point Of Grace has catapulted Heather Floyd, Denise Jones, Shelley Breen and Terry Jones into Christian music "darling" status. Steady On, continues to build upon the foundation of hits that have preceded it, giving the fans what they want...and then some.

Since their self-titled debut, Point Of Grace has never really taken any real risks with their music, producing friendly, talent-heavy, Wilson-Phillips-esque pop for the masses. To me, each subsequent album has merely seemed like "Point Of Grace - Part Two" or "Point Of Grace - Part Three." They were all good, but each new release just seemed like a continuation of the previous album. Each one, high quality pop, but they never seemed to take that step beyond what they were already doing.

With Steady On that has changed.

Don't get me wrong. If you are already familiar with and like Point Of Grace, you will LOVE Steady On New producer (at least new to Point Of Grace), Brown Bannister and the considerable vocal arrangement talents of Chris Eaton bring a new edge and energy to the harmonies and heart that are staples of the Point Of Grace sound. The group doesn't sound different, just more dynamic, more lively and less manufactured.

Musically, the new project is much more guitar-driven and, as a result, fosters much more energy than their previous releases. Due to this new edge, each of the girls get to show off their powerhouse vocal abilities. Indeed, each one of these girls could easily pursue a solo career and hold their own with ease. There is much more spirit to the songs on Steady On and the vocal arrangements are more layered than ever before. Sometimes the girls even have a rougher, almost rootsy quality to their voices. It is obvious that their hearts and souls are poured into the music on this project. Indeed, their love for the Lord and their commitment to the ministry they are involved in (Mercy Ministries of America) shows through in every lyric, music note and beat of this project.

Predicting the inevitable hits from this project is no easy task (as stated above, they average five an album). Each of the twelve tracks can easily be imagined on the radio. Standout tracks include the lively title track (and first single from the project), the nearly acappella introduced "Drawing Me Closer," the radio-friendly "My God," the upbeat and encouraging "Better Days" and the tender ballad, "Who Am I?"

No matter whether you've liked their style before or not, you have to give them credit in one area ... no matter how popular or how many hits Point Of Grace garners, they do not scrimp on the lyrics. Their songs have always been about Jesus Christ and the songs on Steady On are even harder hitting.

Arrangement wise, surprises abound on this project. Just when it seems like they are repeating a formula from a previous album, chords change and the song goes into a totally different direction. This occurs on several tracks is a welcome added bonus to what the fans would have expected. Point Of Grace didn't have to put all of this attention to detail into this project. They probably could have put out "Point Of Grace - Part Four" and it would have done very well. But they didn't. Instead, they have put out a compelling project that is hard not to like. Even if you never really liked Point Of Grace before, you still might like Steady On.

   
 


Related Information

For a year or so I was a CD reviewer for The Lighthouse Electronic Magazine (TLeM) where this review was originally published.

- Paul M. Carhart

 


   
 
  © 1998 Paul M. Carhart, all rights reserved, all media.