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Christian Music - Reviews, News, Interviews

Fellow EP

  • reviewed by Christa Banister Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2007 1 Aug
Fellow EP
Sounds like … female-fronted modern rock in the vein of Paramore, Flyleaf, and EvanescenceAt a glance … Hopeful musings with a good dose of angst co-exist meaningfully on this stellar EP from FellowTrack Listing Only Me Don't Ignore Me Ever and Ever Falling Away Fear

Many times in Christian music, it's tempting for artists to try and offer all the answers in the course of a three-minute song because, after all, we have a hope from knowing the true Answer, Jesus. But sometimes, music is better suited to commiserate with than counsel when the trials we face aren't so cut and dry. Indeed, some of the most comforting art comes from those melancholy moments, because sometimes we don't need a reminder that Jesus is the answer as much as a reminder that he understands what we're going through.

That's exactly what makes the music of Fellow so appealing. Sure, the Visalia, California band references the Answer throughout their five-track Fellow EP—and usually by name. But they're also willing to ask the hard questions through their straight-from-the-journal lyrics.

Lead singer Johanna Miller sets the tone for the disc with her emotion-packed vocals fronting an aggressive rock approach that brings contemporaries like Paramore and Flylead to mind. All five songs pack a punch both musically and lyrically, and the transition from one to another is flawlessly executed, making for a particularly rewarding (though brief) listening experience.

Tapping into the angst we've all felt from time to time, "Ever and Ever" vividly depicts an abandoned soul: "I wake up surrounded by the dark and feel so alone/I know I can't see my heart/Will I survive?" Chances are we will survive those troubling times, as demonstrated in the Psalms, that's exactly how many of us feel when we're down—when victory seems impossible and God seems far away. The band seems to continue the conversation later with the song "Fear," tapping into those hidden spots in our hearts filled with doubt: "Shadows fill my room, my thoughts resound/Ghostly appearances are waking me now/Closing my eyes, waiting for peace."

These darker ruminations on life and faith may not be everyone's musical cup of tea, but the mission of the band is one that should certainly please everyone. "[We want] to produce music that is not only a musical feast, but is also nourishing by speaking to the fundamental issues of humanity," says Fellow guitarist Jake Miller. "These songs are meant to touch a person's emotional pain and frustrations to show them that they are not alone."

Could be just what the listener ordered.

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