Kim Walker-Smith – Café Sessions

Capitol CMG / Sparrow Records / Jesus Culture Music

Release Date: January 29th 2021

Reviewed by: Jonathan Andre

Kim Walker-SmithCafé Sessions (Amazon mp3/iTunes)

Track Listing: [ ] = Original Album

  1. Throne Room (Café Session) [On My Side]
  2. I Know (Café Session) [On My Side]
  3. Protector (Café Session) [Wild Heart]
  4. Stones (Café Session) [Wild Heart]
  5. Rooftops (Café Session) [Jesus Culture: Come Away]
  6. Awaken Love (Café Session) [On My Side]
  7. Fresh Outpouring (Café Session) [On My Side]
  8. More Than Enough (Café Session) [Jesus Culture: Church Volume 1]
  9. Alive in You (Café Session) [Jesus Culture: Let it Echo]

Everyone knows Kim Walker-Smith. Or at least everyone should know her voice- the trademark sound of Jesus Culture, and a lot of their songs that they have unveiled to us all over the years. While I must admit that I’m not as well-versed in Jesus Culture or even Kim Walker-Smith music as someone like my brother (who has reviewed all of Jesus Culture and Kim Walker-Smith’s albums for our site in the past), what I do know is this. Regardless of what people believe of their sermons and/or doctrine, Jesus Culture music and especially music helmed by the vocals of Kim Walker-Smith, has ministered to us all over the years, with songs like ‘Rooftops’, ‘Show Me Your Glory’, ‘Holy Spirit’, ‘Unstoppable Love’ and more recently ‘Freedom’, being songs recognisable and attributed to either Kim’s solo music, or Jesus Culture the band, over the years. And so, for Kim to unveil an acoustic album titled Café Sessions, I was intrigued. I was interested. Will it sound like her studio/live counterparts? How would it compare to the progressively long live efforts from Jesus Culture over the years?

Upon hearing this album from start to finish, I’d have to say…this is not a bad EP. I thought it was going to be worse than what it really was. Sure, these songs are geared to people who have definitely heard these studio/live counterparts before, but all in all, these acoustic renditions showcase more of the lyrics and accentuate the enthusiastic passion and zeal of Kim, than on the studio/live recordings, where a lot of the music is drowning everything else out. Sure, I do have my favourites here on this EP, you can’t go past the famous originals like ‘Rooftops’, ‘Throne Room’, ‘More than Enough’ and ‘Alive in You’, and sure, I may have wanted the track listing to be longer, to incorporate acoustic versions of ‘Just Be’, ‘Insatiable’, ‘Spirit Break Out’, ‘Show Me Your Glory’ and ‘Holy Spirit’; what was received was a 8 track list of enjoyable and heartfelt acoustic songs, some of which I heard before, some I didn’t…but that’s neither here nor there. What I will say is this- if you’re a fan of Kim Walker-Smith, Jesus Culture and their music, then this is a must-have. If you’re only a casual fan, maybe check out some of the originally recorded tracks prior to hearing this acoustic EP. Otherwise, if you want to get into Kim’s music, start at On My Side, and then work backwards and forwards from there. Well done Kim for these 9 songs, some of which remind us of the timelessness of songs like ‘Rooftops’, a track that is still powerful and very-much needed, all those years later! Looking forward to more solo material from Kim, or even more material from Jesus Culture, in the upcoming years to come!

3 songs to listen to: Throne Room, Rooftops, Alive in You

Score: 4/5

RIYL: Jesus Culture, Bethel Music, Passion, Hillsong UNITED

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