Joe Henschel "At the Edge of Imperfection" - CD Review & Free Song
Described by Joseph Henschel as a concept album, this album takes the listener on a journey not dissimilar to the one we experience in day-to-day Christian life. The album begins with songs proclaiming our love for the Lord, and as the album progresses we move more into experience-based heartfelt song. A record that is easy on the ear, with almost seamless transition throughout the first several tracks, a pleasing melodic vocal and sensitive production, this album is sure to appeal to many listeners.
It is unsurprising that Joseph cites Coldplay as one of his influences, strong guitar and piano lines are prevalent in many of the songs, “Awake the Day” being an excellent example. The idea of an introductory track (a la “Life in Technicolor” from “Viva la Vida”) has become, in my opinion, a great addition to the modern-day album. This album’s introductory track “Prelude” is no exception, setting the scene for not just the album, but the first main track “Born to Love You”.
Within the transition between the first two songs lies the genius in the production of this album. Whether the idea of the producer or the artist, I believe that the idea of introducing the next track at the end of the existing one is something to behold. By the end of the Prelude, you already know the feel of “Born to Love You”, meaning that by the time the track comes round, there is a certain familiarity to it. This theme is built on over the course of the album - my personal standout favorite being the transition between “Awake the Day” and “I Will Not be Silent” - the piano line at the end of “Awake the Day” leading succinctly into the delayed guitar line at the start of “I Will Not be Silent”.
Lyrically, this album has a heartfelt feel throughout. It is often all too easy for a singer/songwriter/worship leader to play to their strengths and make most songs sound of a similar feel. Whether it is in the praising chorus of “Great I Am” or in the pensive “Depths of my Heart”, Joseph’s voice and lyricism carries itself very well. Arrangements are also well thought out, songs are not in any way over-produced, and you get the feeling that most of these songs would not sound too different in a live setting - a very important attribute in a solo artist.
I am definitely sold on the concept of this album. It could metaphorically be seen as a time of prayer, in which we thank the Lord for all He has done for us, ask Him for guidance and then proclaim our intent to move forward for His kingdom. It could also be seen as a time of worship, where we express praise and adulation to the Lord, seek to connect with Him, and then respond by giving it all back to Him. Most of all, however, it is a deeply passionate album by a truly blessed worship leader. I pray you enjoy it.
Ruler of My Heart
Awake the Day
I Will Not Be Silent
-Review by Ed Rotheram
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