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Christian Music - Reviews, News, Interviews

Not Ashamed

  • reviewed by Russ Breimeier Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2005 1 Apr
Not Ashamed
Sounds like … the Brit guitar rock styled modern worship of Delirious, Matt Redman, Tim Hughes, and David Crowder Band, with similarities to Tree63 and Paul Colman Trio as well.At a glance … this is a good debut with a likeable sound and some thoughtful lyricism, but Peculiar People Band needs to distinguish themselves further to avoid being another worship band of the month.Track Listing Today Son of God Rise with You Glory to You Can I Leave My Head On My Mind Minister to Me Water of Love You're with Us Not Ashamed True Worship Song It's All Good Only Sacrifice

Not to be confused with Tonéx's similarly named backing group, Peculiar People Band is a modern worship trio from Cape Town, South Africa. Taking their name from the King James translation of 1 Peter 2:9, the band got their start leading worship in church. After conquering the radio charts in their homeland, PPB took the next logical leap of faith by moving to Orange County, California to pursue a broader platform, represented by their international debut with Maranatha!, Not Ashamed.

Striving to emulate Delirious—worshipful, yet widely accessible to the culture—the band succeeds in combining a likeable Brit-guitar-rock sound with straightforward lyricism that (generally) avoids getting bogged down in rhetoric. Comparisons to Matt Redman, Tim Hughes, and David Crowder Band put PPB in good company, although they'd be wise to pursue their own sound in time.

Yet PPB is at their best when they devise songs that work best outside the church walls. There's a cool Delirious groove to "Can I Leave My Head," a song about escaping the temptations of modern culture that really isn't suited for modern worship. The same is true of "On My Mind," an effective though relatively introspective rock ballad that challenges us to pray for those suffering in the world. Other songs like "Rise with You" and "Minister to Me" are strong musically, though the melody's falsetto range will likely prevent them from becoming corporate worship standards.

The album unfortunately suffers from homogeny—too many songs sound the same and you've heard all you need to hear about two-thirds in. There's an especially monotonous guitar riff in "It's All Good," while "True Worship Song" sounds like a clichéd derivation of Redman's "Heart of Worship." Peculiar People Band demonstrates great potential as a better than average band with a broader definition of worship music. But they also need to become more compelling than this, since better worship bands have come and gone over the last five years.