Praise and worship music in the Christian music industry is usually comprised of two variations. The first is the dull and boring, puts you to sleep while sounding like everyone else. The other side of the coin is a well known Christian artist/group creates a praise and worship CD. In my opinion little good comes out of either one of these with a handful of exceptions. The first exception being the Exodus project put together by Michael W. Smith (Smitty as he’s known on the “inside”). This project was a various artists project with several artists recording original songs. The second is Jars of Clay’s own album Redemption Songs, which took a different approach, focusing on century old hymns that you would be hard pressed to find in any church hymnal.
But, there are people out there that are trying to change the sterotype of praise and worship music. People like, Jeremy Camp. On is fourth studio album, Beyond Measure, Jeremy Camp continues to work on breaking down walls and proving that praise and worship music does not have to be mundane. The first thing a new comer might notice about Jeremy Camp is that he does in fact know how to rock out. From the opener “Tonight” you know that you are going to enjoy this album. There are very slow periods on this record and that is a good thing. From the confessional aspects of songs like “Beyond Measure” to the quieted requests on “Give Me Jesus” you can not help but enjoy Jeremy’s voice as he praises God and does it rocking.
I have long held that if praise and worship wanted to have more of a hold on the youth audience, it needed rockers. Third Day does a really good job, but they are not strictly limited to praise and worship. Jeremey Camp might not be strictly praise and worship either, but his albums so far have been very much along those lines, at least lyriclly. Jeremey Camp is a rock artist and you only have to listen to a few of this songs to realize that. I am very happy to see that somebody is looking to praise God while rocking out. We need more people like this. Like I have asked my friend on several occasions, “Why can’t more people do praise and worship like Jeremy Camp?”
(Click the album art image to purchase Beyond Measure from Amazon.com)