Review By: Stephanie Crail
Release Date: 08/28/12
Rating: [usr 9]

Game Changer, the hard-hitting debut album from Indiana based Christian metal band, The Protest, grabs your attention from the first note and doesn’t let go.  Many of the lyrics incite the listeners to take action, to stand up and fight the challenges in their lives, not allowing these things to pull them away from the grace that God so graciously offers.

Powerhouse drummer Jarob Bramlett lays a solid foundation for skilled guitarists Adam Sadler and T.J. Colwell to build upon.  With Sadler on lead, the music energizes and excites.  His searing guitar solos soar above the music, cutting straight to the heart.  Check out “Don’t Waste Time” for a prime example.  Rhythm guitarist Colwell’s crunchy guitar fills provide a perfect balance that rounds out the band’s sound superbly.

Bramlett’s fast feet can be especially observed on “Don’t Waste Time.”  His double bass pedal work gives the song incredible momentum, driving home the message that our life will pass us by and we will be buried by our sin if we don’t take the time to give our burdens over to God.

The energy and rawness that vocalist Josh Bramlett, older brother to Jarob, brings to each song connect with the listener, relating to them, sharing in the struggle, and sometimes pain, that comes with living a life for Christ in this dark and discouraging world.  Life is not always easy or pretty, and this band’s music paints a realistic yet hopeful picture, pointing to the reality and hope that lies beyond this world, giving us the strength to make it through.

Other highlights include guest guitarists Brad Noah, formerly of Disciple, and Noah Henson of Pillar.  Brad Noah lends his skills to the track “Spotlight,” which warns of the dangers of allowing the attention that comes with fame to go to one’s head.  Noah Henson is featured on the track “Chambers,” which declares that no matter what heartache we may suffer in this life, regardless of the fact that our hearts may get broken and we may feel beat up by our circumstances, our hearts will still beat for the One who created us.  “Throw the Roses,” a solid rock track with outstanding guitar riffs, speaks of the importance of dying to ourselves and allowing God to reveal a greater purpose within us.

Closing thoughts: Game Changer is just that, a game changer.  Not only does it remind us that fully surrendering our lives to the redeeming love of Christ will be the ultimate game changer for us, this album will be a defining moment for The Protest, launching their career to even greater heights and allowing them to spread their message of love and hope.

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