Music Review by Luchae Williams
Christian music aficionado, Chris Tomlin, released his 10th studio album in October 2018. Titled Holy Roar, the album was released along with a book titled Holy Roar: 7 Words That Will Change the Way You Worship, co-written with his minister Darren Whitehead.
GRAMMY® winner, Tomlin, recorded the album at a variety of studios, working alongside different producers in and around Nashville. When asked about the writing of the album he shared: “The perspective from me is always writing songs that people can sing and having a song that is a song of worship to God. That’s the lens I’ve always looked through and continue to look through when I write.”
The album peaked at Number 8 on the UK Christian and Gospel Albums chart and came in at Number3 on the US Christian Albums Billboard chart.
Title cut, Holy Roar, is a mid-tempo worship track that speaks about surrendering all our worship to one true God. The chorus says: “A holy roar/Reaching for Heaven/Our praise poured out/With a reckless abandon/Our worship, God/Is wholly Yours.”
With melodic anthems that stir your heart, I appreciated the easy-to-learn worship tracks on the album. Nobody Loves Me Like You, written by the Cash brothers, is a perfect example. The track is such a great reminder that the Father’s love is unbreakable, unshakable and without condition. I found myself caught up in the chorus of this one.
Call and response song – Is He Worthy? – also left a mark on me. The song answers the powerful question: Is He (the Lord) worthy of all praise and glory and honour? The song dramatically unfolds, as a choir belts out the truth: “He is! He is worthy!”
One of my absolute favourites on this album has to be I Stand In Awe, which features gorgeous vocals from songbird, Nicole Serrano. The blend of Serrano and Tomlin’s vocals adds a depth to the album, and the stunning songwriting is brought to the forefront, as the listeners are pointed to the one who deserves the highest praise.
Phil Wickham lends his expert songwriting skill to the album, with track Praise Him Forever. This song is a catchy praise song and definitely carries that contemporary-electronic Christian music vibe, with a message that says “Let everything that breathes/Let all the earth proclaim/Great is the Lord our God!”
Other top-notch songwriters who have offered their songs for the album include Sean Feucht with track Praise Is The Highway and Housefire’s Pat Barrett, with a poignant anthem titled How Sweet It Is. The song’s chorus simply says: “How sweet it is/How sweet it is to be loved by Jesus.”
If you’re looking for the usual Tomlin flavour, complete with heartfelt worship, catchy anthems and melodic sing-along songs that stir the heart of worship, then this is one to add to your collection.