A project like this has been a longtime coming. Forefront and the masterminds behind the hit children's series VeggieTales have pieced together a near fool proof tribute project to honor one of the best Christian franchises of all time. I remember hearing Audio Adrenaline's live cover of "The Hairbrush Song" back in 1997 and wondering why a CCM artist tribute hadn't yet materialized. Well, finally fans with similar desires for such a project can now rest, for the void has been filled...
Veggie Rocks!, an appropriate title for this pop/rock collection, offers up a blend of mostly brand new recordings for this project as well as a few past favorites. This includes Audio A's "Hairbrush Song" as well as 2 previous cuts from the Jonah movie soundtrack (Relient K, Newsboys). However, eight brand new cuts exclusive to this project are included here and each of them are unique and worthy contributions. The opener is appropriately the "VeggieTales Theme Song" performed by Rebecca St. James who offers her hardest and most aggressive recording to date. The original child show theme is given treatment like no ear has ever heard and St. James handles it wonderfully. I never imagined in a million years it could be pulled off as hard rock song but Rebecca does it. Stevenson, consisting of Steven Curtis Chapman and his sons Will and Caleb, puts a cute spin on "I Love My Lips" while rock act Sanctus Real stays true to the upbeat "Promised Land." The newly on-his-own Paul Colman offers an amusing rendition of "I'm So Blue" which precedes the off-the-wall and appropriately silly "I Can Be Your Friend" from The O.C. Supertones. Skillet's near-death-metal rendition of the Junior Asparagus original "Stand" is so far from the version fans know that it's downright hilarious - whether or not it was intended to be. Apart from the original, the song fares well as a solid Skillet offering.
Each artist brings their own signature touch to the beloved Veggie classics on Veggie Rocks!. While younger fans of the show might not be able to digest the harder rocking tracks, there's plenty of fun to be had with this project and let's hope to see another installment sometime soon.- Review date: 3/16/04, written by John DiBiase
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