Monday, July 19, 2010

Luminate

Strong vertical focus

Luminate
Artist: Luminate (www.myspace.com/luminate)
Label: Sparrow/EMI
Length: 6 tracks/25:17 minutes

Each track in Luminate’s six-song debut addresses God at some point if not throughout. It’s no surprise given that each of the five guys have a background in leading worship. It would be a mistake though to think of Luminate as a generic-sounding worship band. They sound more like influences that include U2, The Fray, Switchfoot and The Killers. The band conveys the passion and energy of rock through great production from Christian music veteran Ed Cash.

Tyler, Texas-based Luminate is guitar-driven, but keyboards are also part of the mix. They combine pop, rock and modern worship styles in a way similar to Delirious or Leeland. They have broad appeal with lyrics that mix brokenness, longing and adoration.

“Shine (Love Is an Action),” the first single, is an anthem that redefines love as heartfelt action. It’s a social justice song that has a vision for the world.

“Miracle” conveys yearning in word and sound. It’s the cry of the fallen who are reaching back to God. He is the miracle we need; it’s not something that comes apart from Him.

“Hear Our Cry” is propelled by an Edge-like guitar riff. The words recognize God as the source of strength.

“Fearlessly,” another standout for its introspection, offers a lifeline of hope and comfort in the chorus: “Don’t be afraid, and don’t feel ashamed / You’re one breath away from the life you’re meant to lead.” This ends the EP on a hopeful note with a picture of a life without fear.

These last three songs, which are ballad-like in varying degrees, are the most compelling.

This CD serves as a solid introduction to a band that has been together for four years.
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