Album Review :
Levi The Poet - Seasons

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Band: Levi The Poet
Title: Seasons
Label: Come&Live!
Release Date: December 11, 2012
Reviewer: Jessica Cooper

Track Listing:

  1. Harsh Men
  2. Herman Melville
  3. The Teacher Speaks [A Time To Keep And A Time To Cast Away]
  4. College-Ruled Lines
  5. [In]consistent
  6. Infirmary [A Time To Plant And A Time To Pluck Up What Is Planted]
  7. Damned If You Do, Damned If You Don’t
  8. Dear Pianist
  9. Van Morrison Will Always Remind Me Of You
  10. Stillbirth
  11. A Time To Speak [And A Time To Keep Silent]
  12. Resentment
  13. Boundless

I first saw Levi The Poet perform a few years ago when he was on a Christmastime tour with Bradley Hathaway, and I wasn’t expecting what he had to offer. The most recurring aspect of Levi’s writing is that of his ability to influence others through boldness and blatant regard for calling listeners out of sin and into the love and conviction of the Holy Spirit.

It’s no surprise to say that Seasons is just as intense and hard-hitting as everything else he’s ever written, but Levi The Poet does us another favor yet again. Each track is nerve-pinching and strikes a familiar chord with listeners who have experienced loss, love, and the awkward season of inevitable hurt that comes with the territory of life.

The instrumental performance on Seasons compliments the energy of Levi’s tendency to scream in his art. He addresses biblical teachings in a harsh way, bringing light to the insurrection of the human soul to the commands of the Creator. He and his wife sing together about a heartbreaking matter in “Harsh Men”:

“It haunts me to think that that would be my blessing / The tone in Dad’s voice had seemed threatening / And now there’s nothing I can do to reconcile him to You / Still I can’t fight the fear that he was right / A notion that has left me terrified / Like he was when he went to sleep and woke up in glory.”

There are other aspects of his writing that display feelings of fear, discontentment, and a correlation between the depths of God’s love and the degree of our depravity. Nothing lacks in passion, and the gripping detail of each account awakens and inspires revelation within listeners. My choice for how this characteristic is embodied lies in the words of “[In]consistent”:

“When, through unrepentant sorrow, damaged roads the saints tread on / Be grace to me, my savior, that I might join Your song / Though I swim through lawless water / Peer through eyes, blind and depraved / Be calm to me, my Savior / And in mercy, hush the waves / And through irresistible grace, let my heart break at Your call / In holiness, King Jesus / Enthroned, redeem the fall / When, through covenantal love, devastation is ordained / Pursue me, my Jesus, that I might trust Your ways / And sing hallelujah, and suffer / Hallelujah, and sing / Hallelujah, and suffer / Hallelujah.”

Overall: I can’t say enough about the creativity and uniqueness of his work, and Seasons is another great example of that. Levi Macallister is an incredibly talented guy, totally blessed by God because of his obedience to the will that’s been placed on his life. His writing continues to speak to me on a personal level, and is known to relate to others as well. Seasons will be available on Tuesday through Come&Live! for free, but I encourage you to either make a donation with your download or purchase it from iTunes, Bandcamp, or digital distribution sites everywhere. You can also order it here from his online store.

RIYL: spoken word, dramatic monologue, Listener.