Fernando Ortega has entitled his fifth major-label album Storm, which is cleverly appropriate when you consider the atmospheric feel of his record. Throughout the mix there's a quiet clarity of soft piano, rhythmic acousti... more »c guitar, and even strings reminiscent of George Winston or Jim Brickman. The airy "Light of Heaven" is one of the most accessible tracks and draws comparison to Ortega's biggest previous hit, "This Good Day," from his 2000 Home release. Throughout Storm there's sonic tension, as Ortega's minor-chord verses offset big, shiny choruses. "Our Great God," a majestic and powerful praise and worship piece cowritten with Third Day's Mac Powell, carries the most potential yet falls a bit flat. You can catch a more muscular version of the song on the second City on a Hill release. Ortega also continues his tradition of reworking traditional hymns on a few songs, including a duet with Amy Grant on "Come Ye Sinners, Poor and Needy." --Michael Lyttle« less
Fernando Ortega has entitled his fifth major-label album Storm, which is cleverly appropriate when you consider the atmospheric feel of his record. Throughout the mix there's a quiet clarity of soft piano, rhythmic acoustic guitar, and even strings reminiscent of George Winston or Jim Brickman. The airy "Light of Heaven" is one of the most accessible tracks and draws comparison to Ortega's biggest previous hit, "This Good Day," from his 2000 Home release. Throughout Storm there's sonic tension, as Ortega's minor-chord verses offset big, shiny choruses. "Our Great God," a majestic and powerful praise and worship piece cowritten with Third Day's Mac Powell, carries the most potential yet falls a bit flat. You can catch a more muscular version of the song on the second City on a Hill release. Ortega also continues his tradition of reworking traditional hymns on a few songs, including a duet with Amy Grant on "Come Ye Sinners, Poor and Needy." --Michael Lyttle
Robin V. from RIO RANCHO, NM Reviewed on 10/30/2009...
This is a very low key album and it takes a little while to appreciate it. There are a couple of beautiful tracks on it and most are very comfortable. I was going to trade it, but changed my mind after listening to it again.
B.P. | Wisconsin, United States | 03/21/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Fall is a dramatic season that evokes a sense of change, uncertainty, mystery, and reflection, and has an ominous characteristic given by the fluctuation of weather that accompanies it, initially the turning of warm summer into cold winter. A stirring mood all in it's own, FALL is what I would associate with this album from Fernando Ortega and how I would describe it in one simple term. All of this is reflected throughout the whole CD and clearly made evident with the mentioning of geese flying south, remarkably illustrated in track number eight: This Time Next Year. Altogether the feeling created by Ortega's voice, melodies and lyrics here on this album, is soothing and persuaded me to just slow down, sit still, listen quietly and imagine. Imagine the "weight of clouds pulling down the sky" and "the varnished sun lighting up the fields" found in Storm, the title track. This album is a professional advancement, continuing even more, the aspect of Ortega's style from past projects. Plain and simple lyrics that say so much, and once again it's like prayers effortlessly set in song.The album opens with a wonderful, gentle beat in Traveler, which has a striking chorus of: "Heavenly Father, remember the traveler, bring us safely home." Following this song is: Come Ye Sinners, Poor & Needy, which is another strong and fantastic composition of lyrics. The voices of Ortega and Amy Grant make such a wonderful match here that it really brings the song together, enunciating the message of assurance. City of Sorrows is almost intense, caused tears to well up the first time I listened and made me sing along nearly crying at the start of the chorus, "Oh Jerusalem, city of thrones, the blood of your people, still darkens the stones." To me, there seemed to be a small hint of a likeness to The Book of Revelations with this track as well as number seven: Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence. Christina's Dream, number five, is an instrumental piece with violin, piano, percussion, tin whistle and guitars. The quality fine-tuning of this arrangement seems to have a rejuvenating effect, a sense of smooth movement, timeless, endless, expressive, deep and mood mending. Sometimes just this beautiful track alone is what I desire the most from this CD, and I'll play it over and over again, with it never growing old. Truly is an appropriately titled piece of work because it seems just like a dream.This album is yet another lovely addition to the collection of music by Ortega and is nothing short of profound! Dynamic and primary, much like the chosen colors of indigo blue and rich red/orange that adorn the CD and its case in simple contemporary form. For Ortega fans, this album is more of what we've come to know and love, and those who are familiar with Fernando Ortega will certainly like/enjoy this worthy CD. Your collection should not go without it."
Lawrence Ryan | Kansas City, Missouri United States | 02/15/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Not having read all the reviews and only hearing and immediatly Buying "Storm" ...and now for the second hearing....
This is Fernando Ortega's Best output yet.
I did not think that He would outdo "Home"....
Every song stands alone and unique and melodic and moving,
lyrically and musically...."Storm" is Perfect!I have the pleasure of owning all Fernando on Cd,
and my heart feels at ease knowing that He is exceeding his earlier work and perfecting his already "original" sound.What I think stands out with "Storm" than his other Cd's,
is the Maturing Production and writing.....He sounds Confident and wholy connected to his work and his ongoing collaberation with John Andrew Schreiner seems to serve his messege even more.So with that said...I have to recommend Every song on "Storm".
His duet with Amy Grant is a beautiful song and Amy in the background reaches a new level of musical altitude.If your started With "Storm" as your introduction to Fernado Ortega's music....keep in mind, he is like no other Christian artist....I happen to feel that the Christian Music scene is lacking in good quality music lately....But with Fernado on board,....lets hope for a resurgance."
Kelly K. Dunn | the Heartland of the United States of America | 11/24/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Storm is a great project for a variety of reasons. Musically, it is pure Fernando Ortega! I love the way he brings many different styles together to make a wonderful sound. Content-wise, Storm is good for the world-weary soul. Songs included:
Traveler; Come Ye Sinners- Poor and Needy, a duet with Amy Grant; Light of Heaven (my favorite on this CD); Storm; Cristina's Dream (Instrumental); Our Great God; Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silent; This Time Next Year; A Place on the Earth; City of Sorrows; Sing to Jesus; Jesus Paid It All (my favorite of the hymns)
The more I listen to Fernando Ortega the more I love his music. I really connect with his music on many levels. In my opinion, Storm is one of his best projects he has done. You will be enriched every time you listen to this music."
Andrew D. Lossing | Coquille (nowhere-ville), OR, USA | 07/26/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"... is what this entire album is. Few other Christian artists have such an expressive touch with language, and the way Ortega uses his, in a down-to-earth, deeply lyrical way, when combined with his almost ethereal yet also rooted voice, should be heard by everyone at least once. With elements of country rejuvenated by Ortega's fresh folk outlook, the sound of this album redeems the ideology of rural America. And, also like rural America, his words can take on a nobler theme, rooted in tradition, poetry and history, as in the profoundly moving "City of Sorrows". Everything from the willowy sound of a close-to-nature life to the complex relationships between people, and further to the weighted history embraced by Christians everywhere, all is treated here, and lifted up in gratitude. Profound and peaceful, this album will impress anyone who lends it a serious ear."
Gift for a friend
T. Kendall | 07/02/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have this CD too and it is one of my favorites. Fernando Ortega is a great musician, singer, songwriter and arranger. I love every song on it and so do my kids."