Release Date: November 13th 2015
Reviewed by: Joshua Andre
Consumed By Fire– Lean On Me EP (Amazon mp3/iTunes)
- Lean On Me
- Walk Through The Fire
- Follow Your Heart
- You And Me
Comprised of three siblings Josh, Jordan and Caleb Ward (much like the Klutinoty’s in About A Mile!), Consumed By Fire are the newest signing to Inpop Records, with their music very similar stylistically to needtobreathe and Rhett Walker Band. Releasing their debut EP Lean On Me this past week, alongside albums from Natalie Grant (Be One), Casting Crowns (A Live Worship Experience) and Kutless (Surrender), this EP may fly by under the radar, however their myriad of genres encompassed, including rock, gospel, soul, pop and jazz; as well as their passionate heart for Jesus, have sparked my interest in this pop/rock/worship trio with a bright future ahead of them. So let’s dive in and see how this EP stacks up to the rest of our favourite EP’s of the year!
Opening the track list is the powerful and emphatic title track, driven by catchy whistling, hand claps and captivating keys, as Caleb fervently and powerfully declares that we can rely and depend on Jesus when circumstances and situations around us are falling apart. Though the song could also be about how we as brothers and sisters in Christ can be the hands and feet of Jesus for those around us, and thus others can lean on us. As Caleb ardently mentions that ‘…when you don’t have the words to explain the hurt, you can lean on me when the bullets start flying, lean on me when you’re fighting for surviving, lean on me when you don’t have a home…’, we are reassured that God is with us, fighting our battles for us, so that we do not have to, and that we can rest in Him. What a comforting worship anthem that brilliantly shows us what the band is all about.
“Walk Through The Fire” is next, and is a piano and acoustic guitar mid-tempo ballad, previously on the Four Blood Moons Soundtrack. As Caleb channels his Seabird voice, he reiterates the fact that God stays constant throughout all time, even when everything around us is crashing down, outlining to us that ‘…when it all goes away, You’ll still be here, when it all goes up in flames, You’ll still be here so I’m not afraid to walk through the fire with You…’, providing us with comfort, hope and peace that God always has our best interests at heart.
While the penultimate melody, the country inspired guitar led ballad “Follow Your Heart”, is one of my favourite melodies on the album, where the trio earnestly and honesty impart to us that we ought to follow our hearts and chase our dreams- the ones that God has placed on our hearts; it is the EP ender that really tugs at my heart. The in-your-face mid-tempo electronic and keys prominent pop/rock tune “You And Me” delves into the concept of holding onto grudges, and the simplicity and freeing ability of forgiveness, in the story of the persona singing to the person who’s done them wrong, implying that they forgive them now. Caleb, Josh and Jordan all reiterate that with God we can do anything, including forgive, so why not start now? With “You And Me” assuring us that relationships can be fixed with a simple ‘I forgive You’, Consumed By Fire have saved the best for last, as we examine our own relationships and whether there are any in our lives that need fixing.
With this EP, what sticks out to me, is that while we are presented with many questions yet in each track, we are delivered an ‘answer’ yet more questions arise. An EP for us to wrestle with, and to tie us over until Consumed By Fire’s full length debut drops in 2016; Lean On Me is a release well worth your listen, as we are drawn more closer in communion to God, as well as more of an awareness about ourselves and how we as Christians behave. Well done guys for this short but punchy EP, one that I will listen to for a while yet!
3 songs to listen to: Lean On Me, Follow Your Heart, You And Me
RIYL: Needtobreathe, Rhett Walker Band, Third Day, Carrollton, Lifehouse