Album Review :
Rachel Chan - Go

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Artist: Rachel Chan
Title: Go
Label: EMI CMG
Release Date: 1/10/12
Reviewer: Jonathan Andre

Tracklisting:

  1. As Close
  2. Prove It
  3. Even Here
  4. Show Me More
  5. You Must Love Me
  6. Still Singing
  7. Lame
  8. Ready and Waiting
  9. You and Your Love
  10. Resting in You

Daughter of pastor Francis Chan, Rachel Chan is one of many Christian music artists that started when they were a teenager: Rachael Lampa, Rebecca St. James and Jaci Velasquez. As Rachel released her debut album, Go in January 2012 with the themes of love for the Father for His children, Rachel has been able to mix together some tongue-in-cheek lyrical moments, together with some deep issues, as she explains her heart behind the album, ‘…I learned in a tangible way that relying on the Lord for my lyrics was the only way to create something productive. I’ve never necessarily considered myself a songwriter, but it was when I sought the Lord for His words, that I truly was able to write them in the Spirit…’ From pop radio friendly music to lyrically rich melodies that pierce the heart, Rachel’s debut album is certainly a sound recording, and I can’t wait to see what it is store for her in years to come!

‘Prove It’ is the first radio single on the album, and even includes Francis Chan attempting to rap on the song. As Rachel sings through interesting lyrics, ‘…you could send me flowers, text me poetry for hours…you could call me when I’m sick…’ to a boy and shows him that any relationship has to be ‘proved’ to her own dad; we are reminded about how protective fathers are over their children, especially their own daughters. Reminded of our heavenly relationship with our Father in heaven, and how our earthly relationships with our parents parallel our spiritual ones, I am encouraged at how God continues to shower His love over us, and how ‘…He’s already loved me for better and for worse…always helped me see what I really need…’ Through acoustics, percussion, even a glockenspiel; Rachel produces her first radio hit, and though cheesy at times, it does make us realise that God cares more about us than we realise. Well done Rachel for such a fun and reflective song!

‘Show Me More’ is a typical pop-worship song, with acoustics, keys and electronic reverbs through the whole track. As Rachel sings about how ‘…when I stand in awe, amazed by what You’ve done and who You are, You showed me with grace…’ we are able to get a glimpse into her heart for worship, understanding that all we can do is just stand in awe at the marvellous, wonderful, majestic and holy God. Similarly the last song ‘Resting in You’ continues the worship vibe through the acoustical arrangement and strong piano undertone as Rachel states her intentions with the words ‘…I’m waiting here till you show me what I should do, Jesus I’m resting in you…’ Through these two songs, Rachel is able to promote her worship-pop friendly music towards her fans, showing that even at such a young age, we can truly worship our Father with hope and abandon. Both these songs are bound to be singles at one point, showing us that we can truly worship God at any age, and that no age is too young to start serving in the place God wants you to be in!

‘As Close’ shows us that the choices are up to us in relation to whether we come to Christ or not. Through percussion and a backing choir, Rachel alludes that ‘…we’re as close as we wanna be to resting in a perfect peace…we’re as far as we wanna be from living for eternity…’ The choice of whether we want to enter the kingdom of God is completely up to us and how we view God in relation to who He says He is. ‘Even Here’ is spoken from God’s perspective as we are encouraged that God emphasises with His people’s cries, urging us that ‘…even here I’ll bring you joy…’ Continuing with an acoustical musical frame, Rachel makes this 3:03 track one of my favourites, creating a moment where the Lord stirs and speaks to His people, encouraging us not to fear as we tackle our lives one day at a time.

‘You Must Love Me’ is a touch over the two-minute mark, soothing vocals and keyboard as Rachel imparts to us a hope that God loves us without condition, the father to the lost son, the shepherd to the lost sheep! As we are given a glimpse into the heart of God ‘…You’ve given me Your word, and based on what I’ve heard, You must love me, really love me…’, we are able to rest knowing that God loves us, dwelling in this awesome fact that it is not based upon our merits, but upon who He is, and His overwhelming love for us since the dawn of time! ‘You and Your Love’ lets Rachel place upon her ‘Tricia Brock’ hat as she shows her listeners that God is the one who satisfies her, ‘…Your love completes me, now I search for what to say…’, through light acoustic, simple piano melodies, as well as heartfelt passion. Lastly, ‘Still Singing’ is possibly the only song on the album with an electric guitar, with Rachel giving us a passionate explanation of her cheeriness and happy demeanour, showing listeners that ‘…Jesus, my Saviour, will light up my life, eternally…’

Overall: Though many of her songs are a touch over two or three minutes, Rachel has a hope willing enough to share through song, understanding that many of her fans may be just like her, in school, struggling with this or that. With lyrical moments reflecting themes her fans can relate to, Rachel’s songs show a maturity comparable to when Rachael Lampa or Rebecca St. James started. Showing a ‘child-like’ faith reminiscent of the bible verse where Jesus tells His disciples to let the little children come to Him, that ‘…the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these…’ (Matthew 19:14) Rachel is able to choreograph 10 melodies simple enough to draw in younger listeners, yet equally profound to press on a few issues that focus upon adult circumstances, questions, and assurances only Jesus can give. If you’re a fan of teen pop like Jamie Grace or The Rubyz, then this album is certainly a must!

RIYL: Jamie Grace, pureNRG, Moriah Peters, The Rubyz

Buy the Album: iTunes/Amazon mp3

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