Style: Radio-friendly pop/rock; compare to Francesca Battistelli, Kelly Clarkson, Britt Nicole
Top tracks: "Human," "Power of the Cross," "Someday Our King Will Come"
Twenty years ago, before dc Talk, Jars of Clay, Third Day, or MercyMe popularized Christian bands with platinum-plus sales, solo artists ruled the charts. CCM pop fans freaked out every time Amy, Michael, Sandi, or Steven released a new CD, participating in a slew of specialized "street week" events to purchase crates of copies.
And though bands are now the industry's top sellers, Natalie Grant has bucked the trend, making vocal-heavy pop hip again in Christian music. With powerful singing chops and a magnetic stage presence, Grant has achieved massive radio presence in a male-dominated format, garnered four consecutive Dove Awards for "Female Vocalist of the Year," and sold albums to the color of gold (500,000-plus sales). But it is the service-oriented platforms behind her modern pop shine that connect the singer/philanthropist to her large listening audience and undergirds her latest socially minded recording, Love Revolution.
Spawning an interactive website (startaloverevolution.com) to keep track of users' random acts of kindness, Grant uses the title cut's empowering chorus to rouse listeners to be the change—one loving act a time. The motivating electronics of "Daring to Be" and irresistible pop-programming genius of "Human," co-written with American Idol winner Jordin Sparks, continue the compassionate challenge, expounding on Grant's founding work with The Home Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to the "eradication of human trafficking both domestically and abroad." (Read more about Grant's fight against human trafficking in our interview.)
A trio of powerful corporate-oriented tunes center the record, showcasing her powerhouse pipes and cementing her interest in modern worship—a genre she's suited to due to extensive worship-leading experience on the female teen-oriented "Revolve" tours. And the funk-oriented, self-penned "Beauty Mark" is a direct derivative of her "Revolve" audiences, reminding girls true beauty is indicated by internal characteristics.
"Someday Our King Will Come"—perhaps the record's brightest musical moment—playfully accommodates Grant's R&B tendencies with its retro-soul, horn-tinged track, but it is her understated delivery on the simplistic piano/vocal bonus track, "Song to the King" that best showcases her vocal heart.
Featuring plenty of solid pop made brilliant by her husband, Producer of the Year Bernie Herms, and co-writes with a roster of hit factory songwriters like Jason Ingram, Matthew West, Reuben Morgan and Trent Dabbs, this revolution is radio-safe. Still, Love Revolution does little to support its stimulating premise to think outside of the box, but it's a good pop record overall.
Copyright © 2010 Christianity Today. Click for reprint information.
Subscribe to Christianity Today and get access to this article plus 65+ years of archives.
- Home delivery of CT magazine
- Complete access to articles on ChristianityToday.com
- Over 120 years of magazine archives plus full access to all of CT’s online archives
- Learn more
Read These Next
- TrendingJunia, the Female Apostle Imprisoned for the GospelWhat Scripture tells us about the story of this “outstanding” Jewish woman in chains.Português
- From the MagazineJohn 3:16: So Loved, So FamiliarWe need fresh eyes for our faith’s basic teachings, no matter how long we’ve studied the Bible.简体中文繁體中文
- Editor's PickPresbyterian School Mourns 6 Dead in Nashville ShootingVictims include the head of school and the 9-year-old daughter of the church’s lead pastor.español