Monday, January 31, 2011

The Best of 2010-Top 10 Albums

Part 2 of my The Best of 2010 lists. This time, it is my Top 10 Albums of 2010 as well as the reasons why each album made the Top 10 list. These are all albums you should listen to!
  1. Born Again by Newsboys
  2. Tonight by TobyMac
  3. Rehab by Lecrae
  4. The Shelter by Jars of Clay
  5. And If Our God Is For Us… by Chris Tomlin
  6. Move by Third Day
  7. Light Meets The Dark by Tenth Avenue North
  8. Love Revolution by Natalie Grant
  9. The Chase by Manafest
  10. The Generous Mr. Lovewell by MercyMe
Born Again-Many people were interested to see what would happen to Newsboys after the departure of Peter Furler. Born Again settles all their fears. It is an amazing album that everyone needs to buy!
Tonight-Beginning with my number one single of 2010, Tonight is an awesome album with great songs. It is a mixture of rock, pop, and hip hop all on one CD! A great buy!
Rehab-Lecrae has become of the best Christian rappers of our time. His latest album was given perfect ratings by both Christian and secular websites. If you like rap, buy this album! You’ll love it!
The Shelter-I didn’t think that Jars of Clay could get any better than The Long Fall Back To Earth, but The Shelter is a good match for it. With just about every song containing a guest singer, you will love this cd!
And If Our God Is For Us…-Chris Tomlin has never failed to make great cds with great worship songs, and this album has lots of great stuff! Our God is already sung in tons of churches and expect to hear even more.
Move-Though none of the songs made the Top 10 Songs of 2010 list, this album is still a great one to listen to. It contains the favorites “Lift Up Your Face”, “Children of God”, and “Make Your Move”!
Light Meets The Dark-It was a hard choice for me as to whether I should put “Healing Begins” or “You Are More” on the Top 10 Songs list. These were both great songs and they show what this album is all about.
Love Revolution-Natalie Grant is on line to win another Best Female Vocalist of the Year Dove Award with this latest album. It has new singles as well as ones first sung by others, but she perfects them all!
The Chase-Manafest is one of the best white Christian rappers today! “No Plan B” and “Avalanche”, two songs from this cd, prove the fact, and this guy is so young, so he’s got a long and great future ahead of him.
The Generous Mr. Lovewell-None of it’s songs made the Top 10 list, but this is still a great album! The songs “All of Creation”, “This Life”, “The Generous Mr. Lovewell”, and  make this album worth listening to.
So, there are my Top 10 Albums of 2010, and that wraps up The Best of 2010 lists. Please comment let me know what your Top 10 Albums are, or just tell me some of your favorites of the year!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Best of 2010-Top 10 Songs

I know it's late, but I will now show you my Best of 2010. This is Part 1 of my The Best of 2010 lists. Here are the Top 10 Songs of 2010 and the reasons why each song made the Top 10! If you have not listened to any of these songs, I highly recommend that you listen to them now!
  1. Tonight by TobyMac
  2. Born Again by Newsboys
  3. Awake And Alive by Skillet
  4. Our God by Chris Tomlin
  5. Shelter ft. Brandon Heath, Audrey Assad, and tobyMac,  by Jars of Clay
  6. Avalanche by Manafest
  7. Your Love by Brandon Heath
  8. High ft. Sho Baraka & Suzy Rock by Lecrae
  9. Hold Us Together by Matt Maher
  10. Healing Begins by Tenth Avenue North
Tonight-TobyMac teams up with John Cooper from Skillet to bring this amazing song! John’s vocals just makes it so much better and the two prove to be a great duo. This is definitely the best song, as well as one of the catchiest songs, of the year!

Born Again-With Peter Furler gone, many thought that Newsboys would go downhill with their music. The song Born Again proved them all wrong! This is a great song, and it is what made me change my mind and go out and buy the record.

Awake And Alive-The album Comatose had many singles, so it is no surprise that Awake is getting a lot as well. Awake And Alive is the third single from the record and is the first to have a strings section in it. It makes for a great rock song!

Our God-Chris Tomlin has never failed with his music. Our God was immediately a favorite in churches all around America. The lyrics is great and the song talks about just what our God is. He is greater than all things and all people!

Shelter-Jars of Clay delivered with an amazing album last year, The Long Fall Back To Earth. The Shelter’s songs are just as meaningful and just as good! This song, Shelter, has a great tune and is one of my all time favorites from the band!

Avalanche-Canada native Manafest began singing when he was a teen. This hip hop/rock style song is very catchy with good lyrics as well. Though the man’s white, his voice still goes perfectly with his songs, just like TobyMac.

Your Love-I first began to like Brandon Heath after hearing his song Give Me Your Eyes. Your Love is another great song from him! The tune is almost as catchy as Give Me Your Eyes is, and the lyrics are even better.

High-Lecrae is really making a name of himself. The rapper’s latest album, Rehab, has been rated as one of the best Christian rap albums ever made! Lecrae is giving Christian Rap a much better name and this song is one of the reasons why.

Hold Us Together-Matt Maher made a name of himself with Your Grace is Enough. Then, this year, his new single Hold Us Together reached high spots on the Christian Music charts. This is a great song that I myself requested radio stations to play.

Healing Begins-With By Your Side, Tenth Avenue North introduced themselves to the public. But that song is nothing compared to this new song. I enjoyed it so much and even downloaded it off the internet to listen to more!

So, there is my Top 10 Songs of 2010 list! What is your Top 10 Songs of the year, or do you just have some favorites you would like to mention? Please comment and let me know!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Concert Review: "Winter Wonderslam 2010 Tour/Awake Tonight Tour"

Here is my famous concert review written back in December which was first shown on two blogs-our brother site God Tunes Reviews and Jay's Music Blog.

On December 10, 2010, I attended the TobyMac/Skillet concert during the Awake Tonight Tour presented by Winter Wonder Slam at the Peterson Events Center in Pittsburgh, PA. I went along with my church’s youth group, so I got to go with all my friends.
The concert opened with special guest Shonlock’s performance. Then, after waiting some time, Skillet came on. Their concert started with a large curtain hung up in front of the stage and the entire room grew dark. Out of the loud speakers came a low, growling voice that marked Skillet’s regular intro. The voice finally said, “The countdown begins. 10, 9, 8, 7,…” When it finally reached “1″, the guitar solo for Hero began and John Cooper shouted out to the crowd. Then the curtain fell to the ground and was pulled away and Skillet could be seen and lights flashed! After “Hero”, an eerie music was heard which marked the beginning of “Whispers in the Dark” which was then followed by “Better Than Drugs”. After those first three songs, the violinist and celloist, Jonathan Chu and Tate Olsen respectively, appeared on stage on raised platforms playing a solo together. After this solo, Skillet went into the song “Comatose”, a fan favorite, of course. I really like this song because it has a lot of the strings section in it.

John Cooper spoke to the crowd afterwards, saying, “There is a war going on for our souls.” He explained how the world tries to influence us and say false things about God. “But the Bible says ‘or I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile.’” Quoting Romans 1:16, of course. This is the theme of the next song they sang, “Awake and Alive”! This is a newer single but a favorite of mine as it is one of the fewer hits off the Awake cd that has a lot of symphonic rock in it.
After “Awake and Alive”, Skillet moved into a softer tone for the night as they sang “Those Nights,” having the crowd sing the “Waoh! Waoh! Woah! Woah!”s. Then, John Cooper went solo, singing his own version of “When I Survey The Wondrous Cross”. He then said he wanted to get a little more serious for a minute. He explained the story behind the next song: A girl John knew had had enough with life. She didn’t think her life was worth anything and had already tried to commit suicide. Her wrists were scarred by cutting herself, and she was just coming back to John to tell him goodbye before she completely kills herself. John’s answer to her is that there is a God who loves her and cares about her and that there will not be another night were she will be alone. All Panheads know what the next song was, and everyone in the arena cheered as “The Last Night” began! I really like the mix of piano and electric guitar in this song, and there is no wonder that it was a fan favorite. Afterwards, Jen Ledger had a drum solo and Ben Kasica had his signature guitar solo in which he played his electric guitar behind his head for part of it!
John told another story after “The Last Night”. This one was about a boy and girl who really liked each other, maybe too much. One day, they found out that she was pregnant. They had to make a decision on what they should do now. First, they chose to buy a gravestone for the unborn baby girl. Second, they paid for a funeral. And third, they needed to name it. And they named it…Lucy. If you were paying attention, this story is, of course, about the song Lucy which the band then sung. Moving from a soft note to a strong note, Skillet went old school, singing “Savior”.
Suddenly, the entire arena went dark. Then, a growling voice could be heard, a growling voice that sounded very familiar to…Sirens went off and a large skull platform could be seen on the stage as its eyes and mouth lit up! John Cooper was standing on it and shouted, “Pittsburgh! Do you feel like a monster???” Everyone screamed as one of Skillet’s biggest hits began, “Monster”! The loud electric guitar could be heard as John sang the lyrics while standing on the skull! I was surprised at just how great of a job Skillet did with this song! It was followed by two solos, one from celloist Tate Olsen and violinist Jonathan Chu.

Finally, my favorite song was next! The cello and violin began and as the audience cheered and screamed, Skillet began the finale and final song, “Rebirthing”!!! Fire was shot out on stage and at the beginning of the last chorus, fireworks were even sent off! Skillet proved that they know how to put on a great show! And I was disappointed to see it end. As the members of Skillet-John, Korey, Ben, and Jen-walked off the stage, Jen threw her drumsticks into the Mosh Pit. How I wish I could have gotten one of those sticks!
A thirty minute intermission was taken place between Skillet and the next concert. When it was finally over, a countdown began on the large screen behind the stage. Then, the music began and Toby appeared on stage with the spotlight around him singing “Tonight, tonight.” Then, with a “Let’s go!” from Toby, all the lights turned on and the entire Diverse City Band could be seen! As Toby was finishing the first verse of “Tonight”, John Cooper ran on to the stage and began singing with Toby! This was the moment I had been waiting for! John stayed for the rest of the song and then left as Toby went into “I’m For You” and “Showstopper”, two head-bobbing songs.
TobyMac kept the excitement going with the songs “Catchafire (Whoopsi-Daisy)” and “Diverse City”! Toby went into a softer tone for a while too, singing slower songs like “Lose My Soul”, “Hold On”, and “Gone”. He also sang the bridge of “O Come, All Ye Faithful”.
What I really liked about TobyMac was that he spent time talking about God to everyone and even prayed while on stage. He also surprised everybody by pulling out a Terrible Towel, the towel of the Pittsburgh Steelers, saying that he was cheering for Pittsburgh in the Playoffs this year since his own team, the Titans, were not in it anymore!!! This made everyone like him ten times more, of course.

With “Get Back Up” and “Made to Love”, Toby brought the speed back up! He also sang “Boomin’” which was awesome because, if you have seen the music video, a rap solo by Shonlock replaces the Mandisa ending. They did the same thing in the concert. With a few backflips and some other cool moves, Shonlock went into his solo and gave people near the stage high-fives.
Then Toby shouted to the crowd, “Are you ready for some Funky Jesus Music?” A funny video was played on the big screen during this song. The video featured many different people singing the song including Michael W. Smith, Mac Powell, and Bart Millard. It was really hilarious as some of them were acting goofy in the video!
Then, the room grew dark, and on the screen was the Charlie Brown Christmas scene where Linus tells Charlie Brown the true meaning of the Christmas. Afterwards, Toby sang “City On Our Knees”, and it seemed as if the concert was finally over. I was disappointed as I expected Toby to end on a high note, but as it turns out, I was wrong about it being over! tobyMac sang Jesus Freak, and it was cool seeing him sing the rap parts! Then he said, “We’re not done yet! Merry Christmas, Pittburgh!” With that, white confetti that looked like snow was sprayed over the crowd as tobyMac and the Diverse City Band sang Toby’s own version of “Winter Wonder Land”-”Winter Wonder SLAM”!!! John Cooper came back on stage to sing one of the verses and Toby made a great ending of the concert!
I really enjoyed this concert! Though there were a couple things I missed from it.
1. TobyMac’s concert started to lose its excitement eventually and I began to get tired. This may be due to the fact that Skillet was just before it and I was jumping and yelling the entire time and it was now getting late. It may also be because Toby’s soft tone of the concert dragged on for too long, in my opinion. However, once he got back to the upbeat songs, I was wide awake again!

2
. I kept waiting for TobyMac to sing “The Slam” and/or “Christmas This Year” but he never did! Even the radio commercial advertising the concert played the song “The Slam” during it! It is one of my favorite songs, and I am really dissapointed that he didn’t sing.

3
. Skillet was good over all, though I wish they sang “Forgiven” and more songs off the Collide record, but I understand that they didn’t have as much time as they would like since they were sharing the concert time with TobyMac, so they get off the hook.

Overall, this was an awesome concert! The downsides can be overlooked and if concerts had ratings, I would definitely give this one a 5 star rating! It was the best concert anyone could go to!

Concert photos courtesy of David Holzemer of Newreleasetuesday.org.

Help with background and header

Hey everyone! I'm working on changing my background and header to something more creative and original. Right now, I need some advice for what software I should use to do this AND how to use the software itself. :D I know I could try to figure out how to use the software myself, but I'm really busy right now and don't have time to try to figure it out, if you know what I mean. Also, if you got some cool ideas for what I should use as my background/header, please comment and let me know!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Album Review: "Today" by 33Miles

Rating: 3.5/5 Stars
Genre: Pop/Rock/Country Pop

In 2007, 33Miles debuted with their first album, "33Miles." Since then, they have released two other albums, one of them being a Christmas album and the other being One Life featuring the hit songs "One Life to Love" and "Jesus Calling." Now, in 2010, they have released their fourth album "Today." The band is different now, however. Collin Stoddard (keyboard/backing vocals) left the band earlier this year and now there are only two band members, Jason Barton and Chris Lockwood. Now the question is, can 33Miles still make good music with one less band member? The answer: Yes.
The album begins with the catchy, upbeat song "What Grace Looks Like" which tells everyone that if they want to know what grace looks like to just look around at all that God has done us. Some of the lines from the chorus go "If you want to know what Grace looks like, let Love open up your eyes...It’s all around, look and see what God does for you and me." With the "oh, ah, oh"s in the beginning and end, "What Grace Looks Like" makes for a fun song and is one of my favourites off the album.
"Hold Me Up" follows "What Grace Looks Like" on the album. The song is a reminder to Christians

New Blog!

Welcome, Everyone, to my first blog! I will be using this blog to post my album reviews, music news, concert reviews, free music notifications, and more! Please follow me via twitter or blogger or whatever you like! For my first review on this blog, I shall post the first official review I ever wrote. It was first seen on God Tunes Reviews. One more thing, if you have any ideas for something I should add or change on my blog, please let me know! I'm open to all suggestions.