Sounds like … skillfully crafted folk pop, reminiscent of Wes King, Phil Keaggy, or Dan Fogelberg
At a Glance … Waiting for Aidan is full of intelligently written and beautifully performed inspirational folk-pop, and Steve Bell deserves some attention for the quality of songwriting on this album.
I've read articles that have appropriately called Canadian artist Steve Bell one of the best-kept secrets in Christian music. Despite domestic releases in the States since 1989, Steve hasn't quite made a name for himself here. Perhaps that's because Steve has openly said he's not a "Christian artist," but rather an "artist who is a Christian" (like U2 or Lifehouse, for example). It's funny, because you'll probably have a difficult time telling the difference from listening to his music. Lyrically, he's as open about his faith as just about any Christian artist I've ever heard. If anything, Steve Bell should be set apart from other Christian artists not because of semantics, but for the quality of his songwriting. One listen to his new album, Waiting for Aidan, and you'll see that Steve is a cut above the norm.
Steve's folk-pop style reminds me of Wes King, Wayne Kirkpatrick, and Phil Keaggy (who happens to appear as a guest guitarist on this album). At times, Waiting for Aidan also reminds me a bit of Amy Grant's Behind the Eyes album because it has a similar acoustic-pop feel and has plenty of songs that wrestle with faith and hardship. Steve's skills on the acoustic guitar rival those of Wes King's, and his soft-tenor vocals sound remarkably close to those of Brent Bourgeois. Steve is clearly a gifted musician who's not afraid to dabble with a little bit of jazz in his music. Check out the album's instrumental title ...1