VSR Music Group
Release Date: September 25th 2012
Reviewed by Joshua Andre
Brian Weaver- Let Love In (Amazon mp3/iTunes)
The first time I heard Brian Weaver’s music was the Hillsong cover “Came To My Rescue”; and I was completely blown away, and eager to hear more. Carrying a contemporary and fresh feel, with a voice similar to Matt Hammitt, Cliff Young from Caedmon’s Call and Mark Schultz and lyrics like Chris Tomlin; this young worship leader from Phoenix, Arizona is sure to take off in his sophomore album, his debut on EMI CMG Distribution through VSR Music Group, Let Love In. With upbeat tracks next to worship ballads, this under the radar album is not to be missed; and while it may not beat Matthew West in sales on its opening week; it may even be as lyrically impacting and poignant. Well done Brian for a well thought out EP, with captivating and confronting lyrics and courageous musical arrangements!
The title track “Let Love In” is first, and from the get go, Brian tackles the concept of doing things with the absence of the love of God in them, and how we should let God’s love permeate everything that we do. Loosely based on 1 Corinthians 13; Brian gives us a humble prayer to God as we sing along too ‘…Breathe into my heart, give life again, shine a light of grace on my darkest sin, break into the walls I hide behind, I’ll give it all this time to let love in…’. God is wooing us with his love, and this confronting guitar based opener asks us to break down our own perceptions, and let God shatter the stereotypes so that we can be free in His love. What a heartfelt and emotional track! Segueing into the slower tempo ballad “You Made Me”, Brian reassures us with a promise that even when circumstances in our lives may not be as we’d imagine, and we may throw our fit at God in the midst of trouble; that in fact God is there and He has a plan. The fact that ‘…I know with no shadow of doubt, that [God] made me…so I’ll sing, and I’ll shout, and I’ll lift my voice though the clouds…’; as well as everyone else in this world is reason enough for us to fully put our trust in Him!
“Rain or Shine” is a upbeat groovy tune worthy or swaying on the dance floor, and also sports well written lyrics; as Brian tells of God’s goodness and faithfulness, that ‘…through rain or shine, He’s there through it all, He’s there when you call, every day or night, every time you fall…in His arms…’. When you can’t see God, he’s there. He’s there 24/7, and that is very comforting and uplifting! Even though the piano pop melody may seem a bit safe melodically, Brian’s song-writing is a blast, as he even manages to slip in the gospel in this well picked lead radio single, giving food for thought as he says that we are set free through the grace of God, and not by works. Well done Brian for being bold and very overt! On the other side of half way is the musical ear candy of “Count It All Joy”; with plenty of guitars, reverb, synth and gang vocals. Musically this is Brian at his best, however the lyrics have been heard before in the previous tracks, of relying of God in our troubles, and to praise God in the storms of our lives. Similar to Casting Crowns’ song “Praise You In This Storm” thematically, it’s still a good reminder nonetheless that ‘…when you don’t think that you can take it anymore, just count it on joy…’ that God has our back and that He has a plan that well worth the wait and better than we can ever imagine!
“I Found Love” is a drastic change in tempo, and Brian gives an emotional performance in this piano led possible radio single and my favourite song from the album. This is total surrender worship to God, at its most vulnerable, with Brian declaring that ‘…I found love in You…’. Listing and explaining to qualities of Love, as it pertains to Jesus Christ, Brian makes it clear that his love for Jesus is above any other, and that it is enough for us. “How I Hear You” is the album closer, which is an upbeat celebration that God is in everything that we do, and that when we want to talk to him, He will answer, with an audible voice, or through creation, friends, family, or other mechanisms. Remember that God spoke through a burning bush and a donkey in the Bible, so He can do anything. And as Brian honestly sings out ‘…You’re the whisper to the right when I want to go left, You’re the push to go on when I’m right out of breath, when you speak, that’s how I hear You…’; the signs of God speaking are everywhere, and we just need to be in tune with the Bible and the Holy Spirit, and follow the wisdom, advice and discernment of our friends and family; to hear God.
Brian Weaver has recorded a mini-album full of gems, and it’s too bad this upbeat repertoire only lasts for 6 songs- I was just getting into the music!! Nevertheless, Brian is an extremely talented young musician with a bright future ahead of him. Perhaps his 3rd release will be a full length album… but until then, I am definitely going to listen to his 2010 release! Dove Award for new artist? While musically this album is a bit on the safe side, the lyrics more than make up for it, with Brian’s song-writing sure to take off in the near future! Well done Brian for this unequivocally unique and refreshing experience!
- Let Love In
- You Made Me
- Rain Or Shine
- Count It All Joy
- I Found Love
- How I Hear You
Favourite Tracks: Rain Or Shine, I Found Love, How I Hear You