- reviewed by Russ Breimeier Copyright Christianity Today International
- 2003 1 Sep
Developing as a band for just the last four years, Salvador has rapidly earned a reputation as one of Christian music's best live bands. The worshipful Latin rockers do about 200 shows a year, including Acquire the Fire youth events, Promise Keepers conventions, and Billy Graham crusades. With two-and-a-half original albums under their belt, including their all Spanish-language
The unmistakably titled
Not surprisingly, Nic Gonzales says the song selection for this album was easy. Their best songs from their last three projects clearly stand out, and they're rounded out by half an album's worth of popular worship standards. There's an impressive blend of high-energy tracks with slow ones, plus Salvador's trademark mix of genres, cultures, and worship styles. From their first album are a lively show-starting cover of "David Danced," their funk-infused "Lord I Come Before You," and the wild Latin finale "Montaña," for which the audience goes absolutely nuts. The only representative from 2002's
It's with the worship covers that Salvador best demonstrates their skills as arrangers and musicians. A basic cover of Paul Baloche's "Open the Eyes of My Heart" is made interesting because of the jazzy '70s pop style. Co-producer Chris Rodriguez offers his guitar skills on his acoustic arrangement of the classic praise chorus "I Love You Lord," rendered with complex jazz chords and a nice trumpet solo by Gabaldon. Salvador also makes Chris Tomlin's "We Fall Down" their own by adding jazzy chords, a classic electric piano, and a slick guitar solo.
Kudos to the band for making Waterdeep's lesser-known "Those Who Trust" part of their set, adding some Latin spice to the funky original. This is a great example of finding a worship song that is well suited for the band's sound, and they do Waterdeep proud here with a performance worthy of Dave Matthews Band. All of that is also true of Kirk Franklin's "My Desire," popularized by Fred Hammond. It's treated with energy and funk equal to the original, if not more, highlighted by the outstanding keyboard solos of Bevins. Covers of "As the Deer," Delirious' "I Could Sing of Your Love Forever," and Tim Hughes' "Here I Am to Worship" are good, but routine and less impressive than the other tracks.
This is not the best live recording out there, lacking the expansive and polished stereo mixing that most people are accustomed to. Though not badly done, it's rudimentary sounding in an attempt to keep it raw and real.