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Chronology, Volume Two (2001-2006)

  • reviewed by Russ Breimeier Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2007 1 Aug
Chronology, Volume Two (2001-2006)
Sounds like … the more adult contemporary friendly side of Third Day's Southern pop/rock catalog, closer to Hootie & The Blowfish and MercyMe than The Black Crowes or Lynyrd Skynyrd.At a glance … the DVD documentary is excellent, but the songs—from the second five years of Third Day's career—are an unfocused mishmash of covers, live tracks, and tepid AC pop.Track Listing Come on Back to Me
Show Me Your Glory
You Are So Good to Me (live)- new
Mountain of God
Sing a Song
Come Together
God of Wonders (live)
Cry Out to Jesus (live)- new
Creed (live)
I Believe
Nothing Compares
Blessed Assurance (live)- new
Movin? On Up
I See Love
I Can Feel It (live)- new
Carry Me Home

In this so-called "Year of Third Day," celebrating the Southern rock band's first decade, Chronology, Volume One (1996-2000) summarized their first five years of hits almost perfectly. Picking up where it left off, Chronology, Volume Two (2001-2006) gets the job done, though not nearly as well.

Both Chronology projects span three studio recordings and one Offerings worship album, but the similarities end there. Not even the cover art matches, needlessly Photoshop-ing a band photo on the second cover to remind those who can't read that this is indeed a Third Day album.

Volume Two magnifies how suddenly the band changed after 2001, dividing fans between those who miss the Southern rock roots and those still devoted to the AC pop/worship hybrid. Stylistic changes aside, some of the newer songs are simply too routine. There are certainly essentials here—"Come Together," worshipful "Sing a Song" (best recapturing the band's earlier sound), and most recently "Tunnel." But the tepid "Nothing Compares" does compare to the better "Show Me Your Glory," and the string-drenched "Mountain of God" fails to live up to the powerhouse potential of a Mac Powell and Ashley Cleveland duet.

"Cry Out to Jesus" and Third Day's cover of Waterdeep's "You Are So Good to Me" are included, but as unremarkable live versions instead of the original radio singles you'd expect. There's more pull with rarities like "Carry Me Home," a terrific cover of Primal Scream's "Movin' On Up" from The Second Chance soundtrack, and "I See Love" from The Passion of the Christ: Songs with Bart Millard and Steven Curtis Chapman.

Interestingly, almost a third of these songs are not by Third Day, which is especially frustrating considering that at least six No. 1 hits were excluded between the two compilations. At least the DVD is worthwhile, particularly for its excellent hour-long documentary of the band's history, plus some good live footage. Whereas Volume One felt essential, encapsulating the early years of one of CCM's greatest rock bands, Volume Two is better left for fan clubs and completists.

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