Sounds like … if Wes King were trading vocals with Daneille Young of Caedmon's Call while singing gentle acoustic pop songs worthy of a Norah Jones album
At a glance … a pleasant acoustic pop album featuring the musical talents of father and daughter, but just not as compelling as Bell's better work over the last 15 years
Steve Bell—Canada's answer to Wes King, Michael Card, Wayne Kirkpatrick, and Dan Fogelberg—wasn't planning a new album so soon. Though he hasn't released a new project since 2001's Waiting for Aidan, he expected to be a busy man in 2003 with his daughter Sarah's wedding. But Sarah, due to growing unease, ended up canceling the wedding—suddenly leaving Dad with unexpected time on his hands. The elder Bell decided to put it to good use, recording some songs along with Sarah.
The result is Sons & Daughters, named so (as opposed to Fathers & Daughters) to reflect our equal standings with each other in the eyes of the Lord. The album generally doesn't focus on earthly relationships, or any particular theme for that matter. Three of the songs by Steve almost seem liturgical, lyrically adapted from older texts. The beautiful "Ever Present Need" comes from a poem by St. Francis of Assisi—"Darkness is an unlit wick/A simple spark would vanquish it/Truly I could burst to flame/Every time you call my name." His adaptation of "Psalm 116" is written as a flowing hymn of gratitude for Sarah's recovery from an eating disorder. While the song is admittedly pleasing acoustic pop that remains faithful to the source material, it's about as memorable as a lesser-known ballad from a Paul McCartney album. "Lauds" has a very similar sound, a brief prayer of thanks that draws inspiration ...1
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