Jeremy Camp has become a powerful voice in Christian music. His familiar vocals and heart-on-his-sleeve lyrics have drawn in many fans since his debut Stay just two years ago. Since that release, he's found love with wife Adrienne (formerly of Benjamin Gate), released a worship album and welcomed the birth of his first child, daughter Isabella. With so much growth and change in his life, it surprises me that his sophomore studio project, Restored doesn't show all that much change musically for Camp.
Probably the greatest change you'll find in Restored is the addition of his wife Adrienne on background vocals for several of the tracks. Otherwise, Restored is merely a continuation of Stay. While this 'if-it-ain't-broke-don't-fix-it' approach is fine, it artistically shows little to no growth. Jeremy vocally still bears a strong resemblance to mainstream rock band Nickelback, but due to his experience in the Christian music scene, Camp stands out more on his own than before.
Lyrically, Restored is a strongly written record about restoration and sacrifice. From the opening title track to the emotional "This Man," Camp has written a spirtually charged record from start to finish. "Take You Back" addresses God's endless mercy and forgiveness with a beautiful chorus, "...I know Your response will always be / I'll take you back / Even when your fight is over now / I'll take you back always / Even when the pain is coming through / I'll take you back"
One of the strongest moments on Jeremy Camp's latest venture is "Lay Down My Pride." Serving as a rock-flavored prayer of surrender, Camp stretches his vocal style slightly further than usual, offering a strong chorus and anthemic rhythm.
Perhaps more usage of his wife's gorgeous vocals or more experimentation of his own voice and musical style would have helped make Restored a little stronger, but those who have enjoyed his first two offerings will undoubtedly love his third installment.- Review date: 11/14/04, written by John DiBiase
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