Release Date: January 2015
Reviewed by: Joshua Andre
- New Beginnings
- Give All Of Me
- Here I Am
- Strong to Save
Known for being the lead singer in the now disbanded Dream Records band Silverline, Ryan Edberg this year has ventured out as a solo artist, with his first release a solo EP called New Beginnings; dropping on Noisetrade earlier this year. While Silverline was a rock band at heart, Ryan has recorded 4 acoustic songs of praise and worship to God, which marks a new chapter as he follows God’s calling and direction for the rest of his music career. While some may label this move like Ryan was giving up on the band, personally I don’t see it that way. God was calling Ryan to something new, and that’s ok. Judging by this sampler, Ryan’s new musical direction will be appreciated and loved by many; hopefully his full length album will be released soon because I can’t wait! Will he be signed to Dream Records? Maybe. So let’s dive in and see what I think of the mini-album!
With light percussion, gentle keys and soft acoustic guitar strumming, the title track starts off proceedings, where Ryan desperately and passionately asks God to create a new beginning in him, highlighting the fact that God is the God of restoration. Though the song is lyrically a bit clichéd, it is the chorus that brings the song to another level, with simplistic yet effective stanzas that outline that ‘…I’m falling on my knees in worship of my King, there is no other, all I am is yours and all that I now live for longs to know you more and breathe new life in me…’, a prayer that we all ought to pray if not now, then in the future when we are deeply in love with Jesus and secure in His immense love for us. Another enjoyable aspect of this song is Jonathan Thulin singing the simple yet emotional and riveting bridge; his voice really works in harmony with Ryan’s. Well done Ryan for a fantastic EP opener that has me wanting more!
“Give All Of Me” follows, and is musically more aggressive, with the guitar led rocker underpinning the song musically, as Ryan channels his John James voice and takes us on a time travel trip back to the 90’s with the Newsboys. This song fits right at home on albums like Not Ashamed and Going Public and as Ryan honestly and prayerfully acknowledges that he can trust God with everything in our lives. As Ryan fervently gives God praise, that ‘…I will cast my cares upon You, I will lay my burdens down, I will trade my worry and fear for this promise peace I find, for this anxious heart of mind, I’m not much to offer but I give all of me…’; I find myself in admiration of this song and of Ryan, as I strive to sing this prayer with all my heart very soon. Even now giving everything to God and not being anxious needs improvement, but with God’s help (thanks to this song as well for the encouragement), I, and I am sure others, will be able to let God have total control because of His sovereignty and love for us!
The final 2 songs are just a joy to listen to than the first two songs. While the pop/CCM song “Here I Am”, clocking in at just over 2 and a half minutes, driven by mesmerising acoustic guitar, is where Ryan obediently lets God know that he is here to do whatever God wants him to do (bold prayer but a prayer that we all can nonetheless strive towards), it is the EP closer, the piano led melody “Strong To Save” that is the hidden treasure of the album. Straightforward and the track most easily accessible to sing at church, Ryan has saved the best for last as he unequivocally and unashamedly proclaims God’s sovereignty and that ‘…Your name be lifted high, it’s Jesus we adore, Your name be lifted high, Christ the Lord….’, amongst epic guitar strums and captivating strings. Channelling Bluetree in this song, I can tell this this track will be big in the future, God’s anointing is definitely here!
Brutally honest, emotional, and also poignant, we end the EP praising God, the same way we entered it. Ryan Edberg deserves the accolades for New Beginnings EP, and I hope and pray that the full length album (whenever it releases) will bless people and remind us of our security in Jesus who loves us immensely. Was it a good decision for Silverline to disband, especially when I believe they had a few more albums left? Maybe Ryan could have recorded his solo stuff concurrently? You be the judge… listen to this EP, and buy it though, there’s something special about this batch fo 4 songs that I can’t seem to put my finger on, and that’s definitely a good thing!
3 songs to listen to: New Beginnings, Give All Of Me, Strong To Save
RIYL: Jonathan Thulin, Sanctus Real, Kutless, Building 429, Nate Sallie