Review Date: 07/01/14
Review By: Maddy Agers (14)
Release Date: 04/01/14
Rating: [usr 9]
Today marks the three month anniversary of Unspoken’s self titled album, which came out on April 1st of this year. This was a highly anticipated project, and Unspoken made it worth all the wait. Their Who You Are EP released in January of 2013, and since the arrival of the song of the same name, people like me had been sitting on the edge of their seats in anticipation for the rest of the album. The quartet traveled to my city this spring, and I had the chance to get a bit of advice from the band to any aspiring artists out there, which I will include at the end. But now that the full album is here, I’d like to share an album review!
If you don’t know about Unspoken, then let me fill you in. Chad Mattson, Mike Gomez, Jon Lowry, and Ariel Munoz are the four talented musicians that make up the band. Lead singer Chad Mattson says, “The more you work on something and devote yourself to a craft, I think the better you become at it, especially as you are surrounding yourself with people who are good at it.” That would explain why the band is so good at what they do. They’ve gotten to tour with bands like Big Daddy Weave and Sanctus Real, and they’ve even had two top singles – in a row! They’ve worked hard – and became successful – at making this album diverse. After all, with the good spirits and love for God that shines through these guys, what can’t they do?
To start off, the band added a fun and upbeat song, otherwise known as “Start A Fire” that has a great theme and gives off a good vibe. It’s all about wanting God to start a fire within you so that you can burn brighter for Him. How awesome is it to have a song like that playing through radio stations all over the U.S.?
“Who You Are” and “Lift My Life Up” also proved to be radio hits, playing frequently on airwaves all over, and bringing people to know God. Both have different themes, “Who You Are” being a song of grace and hope – saying that no matter who you are, no matter what you’ve done, you can change who you are, while “Lift My Life Up” talks about lifting your life up to God and surrendering yourself for something bigger than you can fathom. Both are wonderful songs, and if you haven’t heard ’em, go check ’em out!
“Tomorrow” is a song all about letting the past go and facing tomorrow (with the help of God, of course!). It’s a song for every rough day, or days when you are stuck on old wounds and battles that have already been fought. We just need to let it go – after all, every day is a chance to start fresh!
“Real Thing” is a yearn for a real love, real hope, and a real God. As the band puts it,
“What we we need is the real thing, real thing
Somethin’ to believe in
A love so strong it can never be denied
It’s more than a feeling
No we’re not dreaming, dreaming
We wake up to find the promises of new life.
Yeah it’s the real thing”
Isn’t that a testament of truth? In a world where there are so many fake and impure things, we honestly just need to hold on to a real thing – a real love, as given to us by Jesus Christ. The way that the band put this into words is incredible!
“Everything” was one of those songs that makes you wanna scream “HE GETS IT!” After a long day and a lot of pain and worry, this was my song of triumph. I am quite happy that Unspoken was able to put my feelings into a song. Good job, guys! Honestly though, whatever day you’re having, this song will be a game-changer. It’s got a Royal Tailor style, and the lyrics are great! (As raved about before!)
When Unspoken did “Bury The Workmen” live, they did it well. It’s the most fun song – a bluesy track that takes you back in time. The inspiration was from a sermon at church that got stuck in frontman Chad Mattson’s head, then leading to this ever-so-catchy song. It’s one of my favorite songs in CCM this whole year. Well done, Unspoken!
Finally, Unspoken closes the album out with “My Recovery,” a song dedicated to the many like Chad who have climbed through mountains with various addictions, painful experiences, etc. The words are beautiful, and the tone of the song fits very well. If you’re going through something and you need recovery, turn this song on and let Jesus do the rest!
Another thing that Unspoken can do well other than music is give advice. When they came into town, I asked what advice the band would give to an aspiring artist. Their (slightly paraphrased) answer: “Get involved in your church. If you can’t serve on the worship team, serve somewhere else. Get extremely good at what you do, and work at it like nothing you’ve ever worked at. You have to start small, and go from there. Everyone starts somewhere, and you have to enjoy the time of being where you are.”
I’d say that’s some good advice! Congratulations to Unspoken on the three month anniversary. Keep making awesome music, guys!