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Christian Music - Reviews, News, Interviews

The Heavy and the Holy

  • reviewed by Christa Banister Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2006 1 Jul
  • COMMENTS
The Heavy and the Holy
Sounds like … Crystal Lewis' vocals with more of a rock edge musically a la Plumb, Avril Lavigne, Krystal Meyers, and EvanescenceAt a glance … whether she's singing hymns or hard rock, Kristyn Leigh tackles both with aplomb and a sense of convictionTrack Listing Two Sides of Me (The Heavy and the Holy) Bulletproof Girl Invisible Pent Up Glimpse All That I Want He Got Me Through What I Didn't Say The Old Rugged Cross Fallen In Jesus' Name I Surrender All Sit With Me Awhile Two Sides of Me (Orchestral Mix)

Nineteen-year-old Kristyn Leigh has something in common with the likes of Superman, Spiderman, and Batman. While she doesn't possess any superpowers (that we know of, anyway), she does understand the whole dual personality dilemma.

"I have always been different," Leigh says. "I love to sing the old hymns of the church, but at the same time I love to rock out wearing a long pink skirt. I finally realized that is exactly what God wants me to do. He wants my praise, but at the same time he wants me to take his message of love to a hurting world of people. And he wants me to do that being myself."

On The Heavy and the Holy, Leigh officially introduces listeners to who she is—a regular girl with everyday struggles who just happens to love God … and has a fantastic voice to boot. In fact, for those who've missed hearing from Crystal Lewis, Leigh has a similar vocal range. But instead of embracing a more adult contemporary style, Leigh prefers to rock instead, something she demonstrates with a vengeance on the aggressive strains of "Bulletproof Girl," which reminds listeners that the world isn't an easy place to live.

"A lot of people assume since I am a Christian that I can't be hurt," she says. "I get hurt a lot! But I have faith that's been instilled in me from an early age. I can fall on that and deal."

Also providing a relatable message for her peers is "Invisible," a rock ballad that explores the all-too-common dilemma of feeling unnoticed. While the topic could easily lend itself to familiar platitudes, Leigh manages to avoid those with sharp lyrical observations and a passionate vocal performance.

Less successful, however, is her foray into pop/punk territory. While "Pent Up" certainly has an important message of standing up for what you believe in, Leigh's voice doesn't suit the material as well. While she certainly can do the rock vocal thing, the punk thing just doesn't sound as natural, making her sound more like a poseur.

But aside from that small misstep, Leigh definitely has a good thing going here, especially on her soulful rendition of "The Old Rugged Cross," a delightful curve ball in a mostly issues-oriented set.

For more information, check out www.kristynleigh.com.

If you are an independent artist who would like to be considered for review on our site, please send your CD(s) and any related press materials to editor of independent artist coverage:

Christa Banister
Attn: Independent Christian Artists
300 E. 4th St. Suite 406
St. Paul, MN 55101

Due to the number of projects we receive, we are unable to cover or correspond with every artist that contributes. But we do give all submissions a fair listen for coverage consideration.

© Christa Banister, subject to licensing agreement with Christianity Today International. All rights reserved. Click for reprint information.


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