Producer: Matthew Lawson
Record Label: Independent Release
Fellow reviewer Matthew Lawson has become a great friend of mine throughout the years. So when I was tasked with reviewing his new project, I considered it an honor. (Now as a foreword, I will say my opinions are strictly unbiased when it comes to reviewing, so there will be no favoritism.)
The album opens up with a song from the pen of Lee Black and Ricky Free. “He Knows Best” is a great way to begin the album. A modern country vibe with affirming lyrics that God really and truly in all situations knows best. While Matthew is a brilliant songwriter in his own right, and there are some originals found on this album, the next song, “Everybody Hurts,” is just one of those songs that it doesn’t matter who you are you relate to it. It’s a life song from the team of Jason Cox, Joseph Habedank, and Kenna Turner West. How can it NOT be a great song?
I just mentioned that Matthew was a great songwriter, and it’s most evident in the song “That’s How I Pray.” If Matthew has a plan to release a single, this is definitely it. I feel this is the highlight of the entire album. The lyrics are top notch, and Matthew’s delivery is just heartfelt. Brilliant. “Too Late for Grace” is a fun song that brings the tempo up. No matter what we do “…it’s never too late for grace.” What a great reminder!
“Friend of Sinners” is a beautiful ballad that echoes the same theme of “Too Late for Grace” but in a different way. Matthew brings in Bill Shivers from Brian Free and Assurance on the song. “He Calls Me Son” continues this redemption theme found throughout the album. Bill Shivers and Matthew as a duet is a great compliment to each other. A great track! “If I’d Never Been Broken” is a reflective lyric and almost a prayer and definitely a beautiful testimony. I love this that has one some powerful lyrics.
The next two songs, “I’ll Be Believing” and “Never Not Been God,” pick up the tempo. Each one is a fun upbeat or mid tempo song about who God is and what He does. The album closes with the simply titled “A Heaven Song,” because every album needs one. It’s a great way to end this fantastic album: on a beautiful note reflecting on Home.
As I said from the beginning, I am pleased to call Matthew a friend of mine. However, even if I was a new listener, I still would recommend this album. I features heartfelt lyrics and always a picture of the power of redemption. I definitely can say that you will easily find something about this album you like. So go stream it on your favorite platform. You’ll be glad you did.