Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Similarly Requested CDs
Camp dares to anger his audience and makes great art
Greg Brady | Capital City | 05/10/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Steve Camp has never been one to be too concerned about whether he was expressing "popular" opinions within Christendom or not. JUSTICE is an apt title as Camp rails against adulterers, questionable theology, political "saviors" and callousness toward the poor ("Justice"), trodding too heavily on God's grace ("Playing Marbles with Diamonds"), hypocrisy ("Don't Tell Them Jesus Loves Them"), complacency ("Living Dangerously in the Hands of God", a #3 Christian hit), self-righteousness that sees sin but ignores hurt ("Do you Feel Their Pain?" was the theme song for AIDS Crisis and Christians Today..a group formed specifically to help those dying of the horrible immune disease. The tune actually managed to make it to #1 for 2 weeks for Camp as well.), and the notion of "easy" Christian service ("Servants without Scars"). Sacrifice and suffering are never "popular" messages but Camp rightly points out that they are central to TRUE Christianity. With this album, he uses a bit more guitar than many of his past ones and the musical edge serves the confrontational tone of the album well.
Want evidence that Camp (and frequent collaborator/co-conspirator Rob Frazier) aren't mincing words? How about this from the title track ("They say the Church has been silent/She belongs in politics/So we turned our eyes to Hollywood and we found a President"). All through this album, sacred cows of evangelicals are (deservedly) targeted. [I say this as an evangelical that would probably be placed in the "Religious Right" by the media.] Most of the best songs on here gain the bulk of their power lyrically: "Faith is just the dice that you roll to get lucky" from "Playing Marbles with Diamonds","And another 40,000 children starved to death today/Would we risk all we have/to see one of them saved?" from "Don't Tell Them Jesus Loves Them","Have we failed again?/Talking about the love of God but judging those who need it most" from "Do You Feel their pain?". Camp also rescues a classic Larry Norman song to cover ("Great American Novel") that fits the tone well (and ended up a #21 radio hit).
The album sags at the end with the final 2 tracks "Love That Will Not Let me Go", a fairly typical "Jesus loves me THIIIIS much" song and "I Believe in You", yet another song about Christian brotherhood. They're completely out of character with the rest of the album and feel like attempted sops to radio airplay (Christian contemporary radio is not usually known for playing songs that question their listeners' spiritual commitment or suggest there might be hardship involved in serving Christ.)
If you want "Jesus loves you, you're OK, life is OK, everything's fluffy" messages, avoid this like the plague. If you're ready to consider the possibility that Jesus demands a lot more of your life than warming a seat on Sundays and a quick prayer before eating, this might be the kick in the seat of the pants you need. For MY money, one of the finest CCM albums ever and Camp's shining hour (despite the fact that "Fire and Ice" turns up instead in CCM's 100 Greatest Albums of Christian Music...see ASIN 0736902813) Highly recommended.
4 1/2 stars"