The Jacob's Trouble Video Archives

Thursday, December 30, 2010

JT makes the Popdose CCM Top 50 of all time!

Popdose, a webzine for music lovers both secular and CCM, recently counted down their top 50 best Christian Rock albums of all time. We are very honored and flattered to be counted among so many amazing and legendary talents. You can view the list here or read our entry below:

26. Jacob’s Trouble – Knock, Breathe, Shine (1990): In the late ’80s, the nostalgia for the ’60s was becoming fairly prevalent. Paisley was making in-roads once more, Rickenbacker was jangling again after a long hiatus behind synthesizers. So too was the idea of the short-and-punchy pop tune, saying what it intends to say, in a way that gets you humming along, then gets out of the way. Jacob’s Trouble was a band particularly good at that.

Comprised during this period of Steve Atwell, Mark Blackburn and Jerry Davison, each track stays just under the 4-and-a-half minute mark and mostly lingers around three-straight (aside from the near-five-minute Dylan cover, “I Believe In You”), and that commitment to economy makes the album a breeze to listen to, so much so that you might miss some points along the way. “Islands, Bulidings and Freeways” is downright jubilant, but focuses on the isolating effects of modernity. “Mr. Hitler” tackles judgmental, my-way-or-the-highway theology: “They call me Mr. Hitler, you you won’t hurt my pride. I may be Mr. Hitler, but God is on my side. You can call me Mr. Hitler, but I’m righteous in my rage – I’ll shoot you down if you don’t get out of my way.” It should be obvious to most they’re not advocating this sort of dictatorial spirituality, but there’s an awfully good chance the song was misinterpreted down the line. Sadly, that happened a lot when artists attempted poetic license and roleplay in their recordings.

The two big stand-outs are “Wounded World” wherein the supposed learned among us, including ourselves, are inclined to hang back and let things get worse, thinking, “Well, I’m sure God’s got it covered,” and “There Goes My Heart Again.” The former says, “We sting like salt in the wounds of a wounded world – Well, it’s all our fault, yeah, we’ve all been caught…” Just because you are forgiven, or believe you are, doesn’t exclude you from trying to make the world better, or from trying to help your fellow person, even if and especially if they are not like you or don’t believe as you do. This is not a pick-and-mix option. To quote Adrian Belew, “You either make it better or make it worse.” It’s a common, human mission.

“There Goes My Heart Again” is a big old pop valentine and I dare you to listen to it without having it pleasantly stuck in your head for the rest of the day.

With bright colors, big hair, a Christian mindset and a hippy call to action versus commanding by the couch, Knock, Breathe, Shine is big fun, but says something in the midst of the love-in.

Read more: 50CCM50, Part Three | Popdose
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