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Christian Music - Reviews, News, Interviews

Capture Me

  • Reviewed by Andy Argyrakis Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2009 17 Mar
Capture Me
Sounds like … British musical inspirations from Keane and Coldplay collide with the vertical approach of Phil Wickham and Charlie Hall.At a glance … The solo debut of Farewell Down's singer takes an unusually artful approach to worship couched within singer/songwriter sensibilities.

As a member of Farewell Down, singer/songwriter/worship leader Joe Henschel was a staple of the San Diego Christian music scene (that also birthed Switchfoot and Nickel Creek) while he also expanding his reach through band mission trips to England and Russia. Along the way, the music industry hopeful hooked up producer Jonathan MacIntosh (Sarah MacIntosh, Luna Halo). With the producer's prompting, Henschel crafted a vertical collection of worship songs for MacIntosh's {L}istener Records.

Capture Me certainly channels Henschel's artistic influences (including the Brit-rock appeal of Coldplay and Keane), but also takes cues from Charlie Hall, Phil Wickham, Jason Morant, and Tim Hughes in eloquently expressing lyrics of praise. Centered in chilling acoustics and inspiring harmonies reminiscent of Chris Tomlin, "Creation Cries Out," focuses on declaring Christ's holiness. The glorious pop track "Grace Falls" switches gears ever so slightly to offer thanks for the Lord's unconditional redemption amid sublime guitars and strings. Add in the congregational cries of "You Never Let Go," the escalating art rocker "My Heart Speaks," and a lush title track, and Henschel captivates listeners with both creative execution and reflective centering.

For more information on Joe Henschel, visit

Others worth noting: Monica StahlThere Is a Place
3½ Stars

Style: Jazz/pop; Sara Groves, Rita Springer, Norah Jones

In a nutshell: With a touch of soul, a hint of smooth R&B, and heavy jazz influences, piano popper Monica Stahl delivers eleven easygoing songs of inspiration and encouragement. Outside of a sluggish tune or two, There Is a Place is a sophisticated debut that's sure to stand out on her vocal radiance alone.

For more information on Monica Stahl, visit

JoyFocusCyber Suburban Electro Rock Circus
4 Stars

Style: Modern/alternative rock; Kate Bush, Eurythmics, Queen

In a nutshell: Even with an affinity for several late '70s/early '80s rockers, the female fronted JoyFocus is decidedly current with its alternative rock explorations. Like a modern day Eurythmics, the group deftly combines synth-pop with stadium rock—and even breathes fresh life into the Eurythmics' "Here Comes the Rain Again."

For more information on JoyFocus, visit

Nathan BrumleyShow Me a Sign
3 Stars

Style: Piano pop; Mark Schultz, Keith Green, Michael W. Smith

In a nutshell: Though his voice could stand an extra shred of refinement, this singer/songwriter/piano player is a master on the ivories as he unfurls a breezy pop dynamic. Topically, this project effectively presents socially relevant messages.

For more information on Nathan Brumley, visit

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Andy Argyrakis
465 Gunderson Drive
Carol Stream, IL 60188

© 2009 Andy Argyrakis, subject to licensing agreement with Christianity Today International. All rights reserved. Click for reprint information.