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Christian Music - Reviews, News, Interviews

Here We Go Again

  • reviewed by Christa Banister Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2008 1 Apr
Here We Go Again
Sounds like … Miley Cyrus, Jump5, High School Musical, Aly & AJ, and other tween-friendly artistsAt a glance … too many covers and disjointed sequencing make pureNRG's latest more forgettable than memorableTrack Listing Here We Go Again Any Which Way Like Ain't No Mountain High Enough Call on Jesus Girls Can Change the World Get Up BFF Inside Out That's What Friends Are For Are You Ready More

When pureNRG debuted just shy of a year ago, Jump5 had just announced that they were calling it quits, leaving the Christian industry ripe for an energetic 'tween group to step in. And pureNRG did an admirable job of filling the group's shoes with its sassy, self-titled debut.

My how things have changed since then! With the almost Beatle-esque adoration of Miley Cyrus and Jonas Brothers by the pre-teen set, with other newcomers joining the scene seemingly every week, there's little need for yet another 'tween group with a feel-good message. Well, unless they're planning on contributing something that hasn't already been done before so convincingly.

Unfortunately, that's not the case here with pureNRG's sophomore project, Here We Go Again. There's certainly more rock attitude spiked with edgier guitar accompaniment on catchy tracks like the God-focused opener "Here We Go Again" and the kicky girl power anthem "Girls Can Change the World." But an oddly placed rendition of Nicole C. Mullen's "Call on Jesus" after the oft-covered pop hit "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" leaves me scratching my head.

It's admirable to be bold about your faith, especially with music geared toward the younger set. But there's no coherent rhyme or reason to the song selection here. Wildly veering between leaning on God in the tough times ("Any Which Way") to the requisite self-esteem chatter on "Inside Out" to an electronically tinged cover of the Dionne Warwick classic "That's What Friends Are For," the overall vision lacks the forward-thinking sophistication of pureNRG's peers.

Which isn't to say an artist can't talk about a variety of issues and have fun in the meantime, but Here We Go Again lacks focus or a unifying theme. It's a run-of-the-mill pop concoction in an increasingly crowded 'tween market dominated by Miley.

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