Release Date: June 23rd 2015
Reviewed by: Joshua Andre
- Arrow (Isaiah Tejada Remix)
- Arrow (Super Duper Remix)
Originally signed to Sparrow Records, pop/folk singer songwriter Audrey Assad has already released 3 albums and 2 EP’s over the past few years (The House You’re Building in 2010, Heart in 2012, Fortunate Fall in 2013, and O Happy Fault and Death Not Be Proud in 2014). Displaying her song writing prowess that I feel personally is in the same category of Jon Forman of Switchfoot, Brooke Fraser, and Bear Rinehart of Needtobreathe; we are now introduced to Audrey’s side project under the moniker LEVV (a duo with Seth Jones). As LEVV readies to release their debut EP Strange Fire later on in 2015, and Audrey also releases Inheritance later on in 2015 as well; the mini-album taster simply titled Arrow has now been unveiled on Noisetrade, featuring 2 songs and 2 remixes. Musically different to her solo material, in that these melodies are more pop and include covert allusions to Jesus rather than overt explicit praise and worship references; this EP is one of the most confronting and comforting albums in 2015. Fans of All Sons and Daughters, Ellie Holcomb, Sara Groves, Bebo Norman and Nichole Nordeman are sure to love this new EP; for me it is one of the most musically creative albums of 2015 so far- Audrey has definitely done it again! She’s created a lyrically rich and musically brilliant piece of work, this is well worth the listen!
Opening the short but punchy EP with the title track, Audrey beautifully and vividly sings about meeting ‘…a foreign man in the west, I felt a strange fire in my chest…’, then later on highlights that ‘…I never saw him coming…I ran from him into the forest…’, as well as the fact that ‘…he put an arrow through my heart and I don’t mind it at all…’. Though these lyrics are ambiguous and she could be singing about her husband and meeting him for the first time, the melody could also be about meeting Jesus for the first time, a testimony of sorts, where Audrey recounts how she became a Christian, and how stubborn she was before God removed her walls. Driven by synth and including keys in the forefront and an EDM atmosphere; it is the double meaning that makes this song enjoyable to listen to, as well as somewhat necessary, as I dwell upon the story of Jonah and how the song could be alluding to the fact that God pursues us with a relenting heart until we fully understand the sacrifice that He made for us. The title track is also remixed (twice) and both versions are so different (with one being much more busier and louder than the other!) but both are poignant and inspiring as well, reiterating the fact that God’s love transcends everything and can tug at our hearts wherever we go.
The subdued piano led reflective and contemplative “Dreams” is the final melody present on this EP (apart from the remixes of “Arrow”), and on this track, Audrey beautifully encapsulates the notion that her dreams are noticed by God, and the He can and will see them to fruition. And though on this earth, our hearts are fragile and broken, as Audrey eloquently reminds us that ‘…and I will love you with my whole heart, if my heart was whole, as it is I’m all in pieces, you can have them all…’, we are also reminded that Jesus can restore our brokenness and keep intact our dreams as well, as we seek and strive to do His will in the future. Well done Audrey and Seth for these two vibrant and eclectic melodies that has me eagerly anticipating LEVV’s full length EP and album later on in 2015!
Though Audrey Assad has been very busy of late, with her full length LEVV side project full album release sometime in 2015, and Audrey’s full length new solo album releasing soon as well; it’s still evident that Audrey’s busyness doesn’t compromise the quality in her song writing and singing. With O Happy Fault and Death Not Be Proud being some of 2014’s buried treasures so far; Audrey has provided us with an edifying and inspirational experience in LEVV’s Arrow that will be guaranteed to succeed. So should you check out this EP on iTunes? Most definitely! Let us know what you think of the songs!
3 songs to listen to: Arrow, Dreams, Arrow (both remixes!)
RIYL: Switchfoot, Needtobreathe, Brooke Fraser, Bebo Norman, Ellie Holcomb