Style: Highly melodic piano pop; compare to Kris Allen, John Mayer, Maroon 5

Top tracks: "Promising Promises," "My Girl Tonight," "These Crazy Times"

Those who know McLaughlin as a "Christian" artist may be disappointed, as his latest lyrics contain no clear (or even poetic) spiritual thread. It's a mostly boy-falls-in-love-with-girl album, showcasing his deft pop sensibilities and soaring, spot-on vocals. The minimalist ballad "My Girl Tonight," with its marriage-oriented lyrics, thankfully skirts from radio-formulaic territory, as does the empathetic, choral-hued "These Crazy Times" (about the continuing poor economy). But other lines are head-scratchers: "Falling"—referring to a female's seductive capabilities—declares that "all you know is you freaking love it"; and the bridge of "Without You Now"—a bitter breakup tune—includes this offer to a former flame: "Think it over … we could be lovers … again."

Promising Promises
Our Rating
3 Stars - Good
Average Rating
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Release Date
May 22, 2012
Razor & Tie
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