Provident Label Group
Release Date: May 26th 2017
Reviewed by: Jonathan Andre
- We Remember
Steven Curtis Chapman needs no introduction. In fact, shall I say that aside from artists like Michael W. Smith and Amy Grant, Steven has been one of the pioneers of Christian music? After a career spanning for more than 20 years, first on Sparrow Records and now on Reunion Records, Steven’s ability to deliver musical poignancy and heartfelt encouragements time and time again has been nothing short of exemplary. It was his journey through adversity in 2008 that led to his faith even being tested, yet still to the other side with confidence of God’s providence for his family, that has continued, even to this day, to be a testament to the power of hope and trust in our Father. While no one wants to walk through what Steven and his family ventured through way back in 2008, what Steven has delivered in the albums since his daughter’s death have been such where we have witnessed the work God has been undertaking in not only his own life but in the lives of the Chapman’s as a whole.
His latest work “We Remember”, recorded live at Sam’s Place at The Ryman, and now since recorded as a studio track, was presented by Steven as an anthem in light of Memorial Day for the U.S. (therefore, I reckon, this song can be used in remembrance during ANZAC day and Remembrance Day, right?), and is a timely reminder about such horrors of war and our constant need to remember those who have fallen. This song, though as patriotic as it may be, is a must-have for any Steven Curtis Chapman fan, for any fan of reflective music about remembrance about years gone past as we look forward to a life full of thanks to those who gave their lives to something bigger than themselves; or anyone who just likes Christian music full stop, who enjoy music as an encouragement, that our Father and Friend is working in our lives and in the lives of others we meet daily.
“We Remember” works on two fronts. First it is a tribute to those who have gone into the horrors of war before us, as we remember the sacrifice people have made for us to be a country free from the tyranny that war comes with. A song that is as emotive as it is patriotic (sure, “We Remember” has allusions to America with the lines ‘we’re still the land of the free and the home of the brave’, but I’m sure we as Australians can still relate to such a track), there is still nevertheless another way we can look at this track. “We Remember” is just about remembering the sacrifice of Jesus as it is about remembering the sacrifice of man. Jesus came to Earth to pay the ultimate price, and what better way to remember than to do so to this track? I am reminded in the words ‘cause we know freedom isn’t free’ that freedom is just that- someone has to pay for our freedoms. It isn’t free, and once we realise that for us to live in the freedom, someone else had to pay the ultimate price (death), we can sing praises to our Father, thanking Him for Jesus and the role He played in the story of God, bringing us back to Himself in this tapestry of redemption and restoration. “We Remember” is a song that can be looked at in these two ways, and thus, is a song that can be enjoyed by anyone who wants to worship, or anyone who just wants to reflect upon our country’s (or even the world’s) history, as we grasp the enormity of what really transpired for us to be as free as we believe to be!
Releasing on the same day as The Letter Black’s Pain, We are Leo’s The Rush and the Roar, Todd Agnew’s From Grace to Glory and Worship Central’s Mercy Road to name a few; Steven’s new song is commended and applauded by myself, and hopefully millions more as the months continue to roll along. One of the most heartfelt and emotional worship experiences I’ve heard this year since “Death Was Arrested” by North Point InsideOut; Steven has imparted to us a sense of hope, trust, happiness and encouragement in this song release. From Speechless, This Moment and Declaration, to The Glorious Unfolding, Beauty Will Rise, Worship and Believe, and All Things New, this new song by Steven is yet another project full of poignancy and comforting words and Steven continues to present to us reasons why he still carries a mantle of one of CCM’s most prolific and sustainable songwriters of CCM history. Well done Steven Curtis Chapman for such a wonderful and rewarding experience, one that will be enjoyed and cherished by myself in months, years and decades to come!
3 songs to listen to: We Remember…3 times. So that we can remember the fact that freedom isn’t free- that we are only so because someone else paid the price for such freedoms
RIYL: Michael W. Smith, Mark Schultz, Selah, Amy Grant