Saturday, December 27, 2008

Phantasmagorical Freek Friday

Let’s talk about music! Artists, groups, songs, albums, concerts, memories, instruments, soundtracks.

I am a “Freek” for Christian music that can be described these words: hard, speed, rock, Goth, metal, alternative, grunge, heavy, oh you get the picture. So, for your entertainment (or mine), every other Friday I will attempt to discuss this fantastic genre here at Anything goes! I will share with you my insight, knowledge, and passion. And you can share on what I've shared or on your own passion!

Please feel free to leave whatever appropriate comments you feel like leaving regarding – songs, albums, groups, or individual artists! Those I may think are Godly; you may have heard rumors to the contrary. I may feel it is great art, and you may disagree! And maybe you don't like this genre at all, and you may want to let me know how much you don't care! Let's get our hands dirty!

Can you believe it’s already been two weeks and time to talk about music, again!!!!? I bet you are thrilled.

But I have to tell you about this great band, 12 Stones. I saw one of their videos on a secular TV station a few years ago. I thought, “Wait a minute. Are these guys Christians?” And sure enough, I researched and found that they were! Well, here’s how it was explained on their fan site:
Quote: “Are they (12 Stones) Christians? Yes. Are they a Christian Band? No. They are a group of kids (young adults) out to have a good time making music and spreading a positive image and message to whomever wants to listen. The whole quote is here:
And I say: This is kind of the new way to present yourself as a Christian writer, poet, musician. “I’m a Christian who plays music for a living. You don’t call a plumber who is a Christian, a Christian Plumber.”
I don’t know how I feel about that, but I love their music and it is very Christian to me.

Their music is heavy but not “Korn” heavy. They are kind of on the same field as Skillet. The singer sounds like Ozzy sometimes. At least I think so.

My favorite CD is: Potter’s Field.

My favorite lyrics are from a song called: The Last Song
Here the best line:
You never change You never stay the same
Like a picture perfect sunrise every time with
One last song to sing

My favorite melody would be the song: Photograph
I think you should listen to Photograph if you get the chance.
The talk on youtube says the song is about suicide. I never got that from listening to it. I’ve since studied the lyrics and, if it is about suicide, I think it’s about not committing suicide. Just look at the bridge:

Did you forget about the things I said?
Fight the lies inside your head
Deny those who try to bring you down
Kill the pain and emptiness
Find a love and lose yourself
Without this life, you're just a memory

You be the judge. I thank Jesus for them “spreading a positive image and message”. Their music enhances my life and worship of Jesus Christ.


Brandon Barr said...

Hi gzusfreek,

My favorite hard rock band is "Disciple". I imagine you've heard of them before. There best album is "By God" in my opinion.

You might also want to check out Josh Garrels. He's RADICAL.... He's all over Utube. His music is poetry. Check out his songs SISU and Zion and Babylon.

gzusfreek said...

I love Disciple, BrandonB, and even more so after this. I looked at their Faith and what they claim and there is no beating around the bush with them.

In a time when the Christians that are rocking say, “You don’t call a plumber a Christian plumber, then why do you call us Christian musicians, we’re just musicians that happen to be Christians. We play music not Christian music.” This kind of statement beats around the bush and shows CHICKEN! (in my opinion and is designed to make more money)

"Disciple" is not afraid to rock AND be called Christian and they do not compromise their Faith. Good choice, BrandonB.

I’m gonna check out Josh Garrels now cause it looks like you know what's up! Thank you!

gzusfreek said...

mmmm, I like this Josh Garrels. He's kind of a Jesse Cook meets Bob Marley. Good stuff BBarr!

Hey guys, check out Josh Garrels!

Brandon Barr said...

:) Hey gzusfreek,

Yeah, Disciple doesn't beat around the bush much.

That argument/sentiment that states "you don't call a plumber a Christian plumber" is interesting. I think where it goes awry slightly is that it generalizes plumbing (a job), with something artistic (spiritual).

I differentiate art as being, at its very highest form, spiritual. In other words, the most MOVING music draws me closer in spirit to God. After all, the music of heaven (the highest form of music we could ever experience) is directed in worship to God. So when Disciple is rocking out to the lyrics, "By God, without you I am nothing. By God, I can do all things....etc" I am able to experience a bit of heaven.

Music, to me, is the most emotionally spiritual (God-connecting) of the arts.

Writing (fiction/non-fiction), at its best, can bring a great wealth of knowledge and wisdom that, if taken in, deepens ones understanding of God.

Yeah, Josh Garrels is rad. I'm big on lyrics, and listening to his lyrics lifts my spirit to heavenly places...theirs nothing quite as powerful as someone proclaiming (without beating around the bush) the truth of God!

Kat Harris said...

I interviewed comedian Adam Christing who gave me almost the same quote verbatim as the Christian plumber thing. I totally get where they're coming from.

I don't see a problem with bands who are labeled Christian rock or writers who are labeled Christian writers, etc.

Unfortunately, I think that label is like a box with a big fat microscope sitting on top of it that magnifies even the tiniest transgression in a secular world.

In other words, I think non-Christians get the idea that those who label themselves as a "Christian-this" or "Christian-that" need to be infallible when, in fact, the very core of Christianity is recognizing the imperfection of humanity and having that imperfection reconciled through Jesus Christ.

Wow. Where did that come from on a Monday morning? :-)

I'll have to check out 12 Stones.

You might like these guys:

They're an indie band of Christian guys from Nebraska. This song isn't as hard as some of the other stuff on they've put out (and it's a few years old already), but I love it.

lynnrush said...

NICE. Glad to have the Phantasmagorical Freek back.... LOL

I've not heard of this band. I'll go check them out. maybe they will land on my iPod... **smile**

Travis said...

You make an interesting observation about the Christian singer and the Christian plumber. I think it's great that a group of Christians can function in that realm and still be a witness. Bravo to them!

I like your photo, thanks for posting it!

By the way, my favorite group is the Sons of the Pioneers. They might actually fit into the phantasmagorical section because they will be viewed as "way out there" by the younger (under 60) generation!

gzusfreek said...

Travis~you may be surprised, I've actually heard the Sons of the Pioneers live! (I was little, early 80's) It may not have been the whole group but it was at a place my family frequented in Durango, Colorado called the "Bar D". A great place. They serve a "cowboy" dinner and music show. I love the harmonies. Good choice.

LynnR~thanks for your comments!

Kat~I'll have to check out the indie/Nebraska guys. My computer is not working well, I'll have to do it at work today. I bet they are great! I trust your instinct in music.
Interesting prospective on the Christian labels -- seeing you've been around it awhile doing interviews etc.

Brandon~I really liked the idea that music and other arts are spiritual at it's highest form. I think I would agree. I liked: Music, to me, is the most emotionally spiritual (God-connecting) of the arts.

I am starting to feel very strongly about the Christian label thing. I will not be a bully, but if I ever am in that position I hope that I will not be afraid to be labeled Christian, but totally be outspoken for Christ.

Alison Bryant said...

About the label thing...My husband and I have been Switchfoot fans for about ten years. When they started doing crossover stuff, we were glad they were getting more exposure. They got really vague in their lyrics, though--I mean, how many ways can you sing that there's more to this life without talking about God?
Seems like they're started to come full circle lately. My husband loves Jon Foreman's recent EP series, each one focusing on one of the four seasons. The words of "Somebody's Baby Girl" are especially haunting.

Thanks for this post and Happy New Year!

gzusfreek said...

Thanks for the comments, Alison. I do like some of Switchfoot. I am so glad they seem to have come full circle lately. I like bold not vague! :-)
As for "My husband loves Jon Foreman's recent EP series, each one focusing on one of the four seasons. The words of "Somebody's Baby Girl" are especially haunting."
You've got my attention, I've got to check that out!
Happy new year to you, Alison! Great to hear from you!