Artist:  dcTalk
Title:  Greatest Hits
Label:  Forefront Records

Okay, I grant you this: dcTalk is an iconic band in the Christian music industry, early crossover heroes who added the sorely needed “hip” factor a decade or so ago to a community slightly backward musically speaking.

We’ve come a long way since then, but we have tobyMac, Kevin Max and Michael Tait to thank for those first baby hip-hop steps. And yes, they are highly honored, massively sold artists, well deserving of a greatest hits collection. But wasn’t that what Intermission was, the final full-length album featuring the full trio in 2000? Or how about Jesus Freak Tenth Anniversary Special Edition, another stellar retrospective of significance delivered just last year? But for those new to the dcTalk magic (if there are such creatures), Greatest Hits will serve as a very solid introduction.

Gather around, little children, and hear a tale of the bold pioneers who gave us Jesus Freak, the drop heard ‘round the world. If you’re young enough to only know tobyMac for the slammin’ hip-hop intelligence of Portable Sounds or the Diverse City projects, or Kevin Max for the tripped out versatility of The Imposter, or maybe even think that Michael Tait is only a Hero, you will find a definitive collection like Greatest Hits extremely helpful, maybe even obligatory for your own personal musical education. You could do much worse.

Forefront Records basically repackaged and reworked Intermissions into a well-rounded, exacting sixteen tracks. In doing so, they wisely passed on “Chance,” “Mr. Morgan,” and “Sugarcoat It,” making room for the absolutely necessary “Red Letters” and “Godsend,” although I wouldn’t have been disappointed to find “I Wish We’d All Been Ready” included as well. It’s hard to complain though, when so many favorites are here, like groundbreaker “Jesus Freak,” the ever popular “What If I Stumble,” the crowd-pleasing “Jesus Is Just Alright,” and standards “Colored People,” “Luv Is a Verb,” and “In the Light.”

On top of all that, Greatest Hits Special Edition DVD serves up eleven of the band’s most popular music videos, three of them live. While I’m not sure I see the need for such an album, given the two previously mentioned collections, far be it from me to argue with a massive success machine like dcTalk. While Greatest Hits doesn’t offer much to the established fan, it is just in time to pull the coat of a generation already enjoying music seeded from these very giants.


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