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Review: Darrell Evans – Nothing Less Than Everything
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I became nauseous when I found out we were reviewing a Darrell Evans project. His CD “the green one” transformed worship music for me back when I graduated high school! Freedom was a terrible disappointment for me and I just didn’t know what I was going to get and have to say about Nothing Less Than Everything. So thank you God that he’s made it easy for me! NLTE could not have been a bigger surprise hit for me! This is not your typical worship CD because he has put in some blood, sweat, and tears making songs that seem terribly personal and raw mixed with creative and very artistic musical accompaniments! As a seasoned veteran, even the arrangement of the CD seems thought through to pull you through the 11 tracks!
From the Crowder Illuminate-era Beautiful Savior to the Mutemath-ish Dream to the Brewster jazz fest of The Joy of the Lord to the sweet lullaby Hide Away with the obligatory pop favorite Everything, there’s very little to critique here! The incredible thing too is that Evans never seems to loose his identity here either! Perhaps 2 “duds” but overall there’s just so much evidence of thought and creativity that I’m just overwhelmed!
Beautiful Savior and Dream tie as my favorite! Coming Home to You comes in 3rd!
Songs for Church:
CAUTION – many of these songs will be difficult to replicate for a typical worship band. This is NOT 3 chords strummed in G with the minor in the bridge 🙂 SO, that being said, you might have to be creative in stripping some of them down. Everything seems like the one groomed for congregational worship. That and The Joy of the Lord are a mush have in a celebratory church. I would totally LOVE to pull off Beautiful Savior. Wonderful and You are God seem easily transferable and many of the rest are definitely doable for topical/performance songs if not appropriate for your church’s worship style.
I wasn’t familiar with Darrell’s earlier work except for hearing Trading My Sorrows one or two times. The CD was not what I expected at all. Maybe it’s because it’s not the type of worship CD I have become accustomed to listening to over the years (i.e. Hillsong and those they influence). What is different about this album is that you nearly feel like you are imposing on Darrell’s personal worship time with God. The songs are a raw and honest cry out to Him. This is refreshing.
I shared my thoughts about this album with someone at recreate (who will rename nameless) and he summed it up like so: “It’s like watching someone washing in the shower, nice but a little uncomfortable…”.
I’ve had the album for a while now since reviewing it in December last year. I listened to the album again yesterday for the first time since the first review.
Must Have Songs:
The best songs on this album are Everything, Beautiful Savior, Hide Away, Wonderful and Light Of The World.
Songs For Church:
As a worship leader, when I review an album, I have a (bad?) habit of leaning towards songs that I feel I could take and sing well in a church setting. One of my favourite songs on the album is Everything… “I lay down my everything, everything for Jesus, You are everything…“. This song is full of energy and I can see it going down well with many congregations.
Uh oh…Darrell Evans review. Got a little scared about doing this one. There are certain artists out there that one gets worried about reviewing. For me reviewing him and maybe having something bad to say about “trading my sorrows” is like bashing “shout to the Lord”. For the record shoot me now. I have never liked “shout to the lord”. Now that I have that out of the way.
I got introduced to Evans with “trading my sorrows”. I used to play it in a church in Oregon and I honestly rode the fence on if I liked it or not. The congregation however ate it up which is why we did it. I tried to get into Evan’s other music and just could not. I even tried his “Consuming Fire” live CD and it just was not a sound I could get into. So needless to say I turned this CD on with trepidation.
From the first few chords my honest reaction was “HOLY CRAP! WOW”. I will get into more of the in a sec…This is a very raw worship album and I have been surprisingly blown away by what Darrell has done here.
Here we go…If you were not a fan of Darrell Evans work, like me, you sure will be now. This CD is an intimate look into the heart of worship. The arrangements on it are beautiful. Even his voice sounds better than I have ever heard it. The opening song “Worthy” is brilliant and sounds like what Brian Johnson would write.
The production is great and there are so many great interwoven sounds. And Evans hits up so many different styles yet still maintains his own flair.
I honestly don’t know what happened because this CD is so good. God’s annointing is all over this CD.
What I love most about the CD is Evans didn’t just write a bunch of songs and record them. You can actually feel the emotion in it.
A few of them have some great guitar tone, and a few tracks to me needed a little more work in the guitar tweaking.
Honestly the only song I don’t like is “You are God”. Its sounds like an odd Todd Agnew rip.
The song “Dream” goes into a little electronica meets gameboy sound and I love it.
So basically the bottom line is You must own this CD. The ratings on Evans previous CD’s for me would be very low, but this one was birthed from somewhere different. Somewhere inspired. Somewhere very holy.
Worthy, Beautiful Savior
This is not a simple Chris Tomlin CD. However if your church has a band that can play pretty well there are a bunch of tracks that I think can be pulled of quite well. There are some on here which are very intimate sounding and would be best for a concert or worship evening of some sort. I will be doing “Worthy”. When “Beautiful Savior” came on my ipod I was hit with a ton of bricks. The song should be a hit. It should be on the radio. Somebody please make that happen. Either way I am going to attempt to do that one on Good Friday.
THE JOINT AS A WHOLE GIVES
Darrell Evans – Nothing Less Than Everything [rating:overall]