Tuesday, January 27, 2015

One More Step - Lindsay McCaul


One More Step, McCaul’s sophomore effort, is a brilliant combination of authentic faith and sophisticated pop.

One More Step
Artist: Lindsay McCaul (www.lindsaymccaul.com)
Label: Centricity Music
Length: 11 tracks/41:06 minutes

When I listen to One More Step by Lindsay McCaul I think of Sara Bareilles. In part it’s because Bareilles comes from my hometown, Eureka, CA, but more significantly, McCaul’s style and sound are reminiscent of the intelligent, well-produced, mostly keyboard and program-driven pop that you find with Bareilles.

McCaul may never sell as many albums, but it’s not for lack of talent. One More Step is rich in a spiritual maturity that is not common among mainstream artists. If the lyrics are any indication, McCaul is “all-in.”

God is not some afterthought. Let me illustrate it like this: Eureka is known for its Rhododendrons. It’s not like McCaul just happens to have one growing in her yard. It’s more like she is an organizer of our annual Rhododendron parade. You could think of her as an ambassador for the Maker of Rhododendrons in all their glory.

She faithfully represents God’s compassion toward His fallen creatures. One of the most memorable moments is “With the Broken Hearted,” a duet with Brandon Heath. This is sparse and acoustic with vocals that are beautifully pensive.

McCaul processes the grief of losing her father on the title track. She recalls the milestones that they shared together noting that each one was a step of faith. This song takes the sting out of death by illustrating that the God who sees His children through every event is the same God who waits with open arms as we take that final step.

“Mess Like Me” is self-deprecating honesty and a light-hearted melody. It’s just singing backed by strumming on what sound likes a mandolin. It’s glorious simplicity and it highlights the singer’s vulnerability. She’s not afraid to share her struggles and failures on this recording, which makes it highly relatable.  It’s a comfort to know that we all fall short in many ways.

“You thought it could not get any worse, (and) then it did,” is the opening line for “Love Won’t Give Up.” The lines are framed by soft percussion and a haunting piano melody. Love serves here as a personification for God. The song offers plenty of reassurance: “You are not hopeless/You have not fallen somewhere beyond its reach/Love comes to heal, restore what’s been broken.”


When Sara Bareilles schedules a concert in the Eureka area, it sells out quickly. I have not had the privilege of attending one, but if I have the opportunity, I would like to hear a Lindsay McCaul concert in my hometown. One More Step, her sophomore effort, is a brilliant combination of authentic faith and sophisticated pop.
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