Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Outloud EP - Josh Collesano

Ok, so, a friend of mine (whom I've met via internet, twitter, and a shared occupation) released an album titled Outloud, an EP of four original songs and hymn re-write. I was looking forward to its iTunes release, which happened today. Here's my review of his album:

When reviewing Christian albums, especially those of worship leaders, I think theology is probably the most important aspect to review. Likely because I'm constantly thinking "Do the people I'm trying to reach need to hear this?" I can say without a doubt, that Josh's album qualifies in that respect. The people we're trying to reach need to hear his message. Lyrics that capture these thoughts include:

"Jesus, You're the answer to the world."
"We will stand to share Your hope with all the world, yeah, they will know that You are God."
"I was bound by all my sin when Your love came and set me free."
"You died in place of me."
"After all we've done, can we say we lived for You?"
"No name is like Your love."

"Come Arise" foreshadows what Josh and his band plan to do with the rest of the EP. Tasteful guitars with plenty of presence, good delay sounds with full rhythm underneath. A strong, yet tactful vocal with a solid message. I think that the music between chorus one and verse two is just a bit too long, although it's pulled off really well. Another big instrumental section connects the bridge to a dropout chorus. Again, this is a bit on long-ish side. This is followed by THE biggest drum fill I've heard in a worship album leading to the final chorus.

As a person who has grown up in Oklahoma, I appreciate the country roots Josh uses in "Come Thou Fount." Lyrically, he takes the first traditional verse, then expands upon it with an additional chorus section or tag. Familiar lyrics intertwine with new proclamations of Christ's victory.

"Holding On" speaks well. The guitar work is clean, gutty, and quite prominent ( - I'm not a guitarist, more a keys/piano guy). I think the guitar tone works really well underneath Josh's vocals. This is the strongest song on the album. "Can we say we lived for You" hit me really hard today. Great message and thoughts there.

I love the way "Outloud" (the title track) opens with synth elements. Creative guitar riffs and effects in the verses move the motion forward to Lifehouse-like chorus with full chords and a big vocal delivery. I think the vocal effects in the bridge are particularly effective in bringing the thoughts back to the chorus to end the song. It's a great message. I love the melody at the chorus, over the words "I want to scream Your name outloud." It's particularly striking.

The acoustic guitar sounds absolutely amazing in the opening of "A Sinners Choir." I personally, think this song could have been stronger. I felt just slightly unsatisfied at the end, as though there was going to be more. I do like it, though I felt just on the side of uneasy. I will listen to it more, and hopefully come back with a different conclusion.

Overall, this is a good EP. I would have loved to have hear some Steve Fee style harmonies in some key places in some key choruses. Josh's vocals speak well, in almost all places. I believe this to be an excellent work from someone that really understands worship leading and the current genre of worship music. Thanks so much for your work.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Song of Hope

I've moved this content over to Loop Community. To read about why, visit this post.

To find this content, click this link.


So, we did this Robbie Seay Band song yesterday and Saturday, and it worked out really well. Here's the mastered and complete loop. It follows the album version, and ends after the three choruses after the bridge. Hope you can use it!


Sunday, July 26, 2009

Glory to God Forever

Ok, so we did this tune this Sunday with a choir, and it was a lot of fun. Though it's simple, it's constant message is amazing. So, I'm posting the loop we used.

The beginning of the song is different than the way Fee plays it. We replaced the one measure of acoustic guitar with synth, and the click signal is where the whole band comes in. I think it cleaned it up for live use, but it wouldn't take much to change it back. Other than that, the arrangement is exactly like the single (looking forward to the full album by the way!).

Glory to God Forever - RNS
Glory to God Forever - split - MP3
Glory to God Forever - MP3

Friday, May 15, 2009

Jesus Saves

We've done Tim Hughes's "Jesus Saves" several times around Easter, and it is a great opener. If you haven't heard it, try it out, it's a really cool high-energy opener.

I made this loop for it, and had my friend Jake (@jake_eyler for the tweeters out there) play the guitar track. I looped it in ReCycle, so you need this rex file. When it asks you for it, point it to the right location and you're good to go. However, Kyle Campos (@kcampos) has pointed out on his blog that Reason has developed a cool new product called Record that will make using pre-recorded sound in the live setting way cooler. Look for new developments on that front to come.

Jesus Saves RNS
Jesus Saves Guitar Riff
Jesus Saves MP3
Jesus Saves split MP3

Monday, April 13, 2009

Jesus Paid It All - Remix

So, I remade the intro to Jesus Paid It All so it flowed from True Love a little better. There's something about deep low-end piano sounds that has a triumphant feel to it. Worked like a charm on Easter Sunday and Saturday.

Jesus Paid It All - RNS
Jesus Paid It All - split - MP3
Jesus Paid It All - MP3

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

True Love

So, here's a good example of simplicity. Often, simple is better than complex. Phil Wickham's song True Love is amazing, but there doesn't need to be much in the loop to carry it. Just a little bit of bass and some synth to complement the band is enough to add without distracting. Hope you can use it, we've used this loop for about a year or so. It almost follows Phil's version exactly, but it's more like this one from Fellowship Church:

True Love from Pace Hartfield on Vimeo.

True Love - RNS
True Love - MP3
True Love - Split MP3

Monday, February 23, 2009

Using These Loops?

I've gotten a few emails/comments from folks using my loops, and I love seeing them in action. That's why I'm posting - so people will actually use them. If you're using them, just post a vid, like Chris did at Church at Viera. Thanks, dude.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Thoughts Immediately After Service

Today is one of those days where I'm particularly struck by something in our worship sets. Today, it was for our ender, David Crowder's Wholly Yours. A while back I posted the loop I used, but that's not the topic for today.

Every now and then, lyrics finally make sense. The bridge lyrics are deep, meaningful, and extremely well-put. I can't really elaborate on them, so I'll just post them here. It's only too bad that you only sing them once in the song.

"But the harder I try, the more clearly can I
Feel the depth of our fall
And the weight of it all
And so this might could be
The most impossible thing:
Your grandness in me making me clean

"Glory, hallelujah,
Glory, glory hallelujah"

I just hope that whoever makes the musical decisions in heaven, on that glorious day picks this tune. In fact, now thinking about it, I'm sure this is one we'll all sing.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Today Is the Day

So, we've done this tune twice now, and we're going to do it again this weekend! Our folks have loved it, and there's plenty of video online showing lead players how to play the solo in the middle that Lincoln plays. It's a great, fun tune, and hope you can use the loop, which uses some of my favorite patches.

Today Is the Day - RNS
Today Is the Day - AAC

Today Is the Day - split - AAC

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Lifechurch voicemail

Bobby Gruenwald, the pastor of innovations at lifechurch.tv posted this interesting voice mail they received. Instant classic.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Beautiful the Blood

Ok, Caleb tried it out, and he liked it, so I'm putting it up. I don't have much in the chorsues, but the band will play out there anyway. Let me know what you think, and hope you can use it.

It follows the Fee version, but we do it in B.

Beautiful the Blood - RNS
Beautiful the Blood - AAC
Beautiful the Blood - split - AAC