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Christian Music - Reviews, News, Interviews


  • reviewed by Russ Breimeier Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2008 1 Sep
Sounds like … the same sort of modern worship offered by bands like Detour 180, Sonicflood, Pocket Full of Rocks, Circadian Rhythm, and Among ThornsAt a glance … no question that the new Parachute Band has a passion for worship, but Technicolor fails to leave a lasting impression compared to better worship albums availableTrack Listing Come to the River Shout It Out Your Word Living Rain Take Over Come Before Grace In Liberty (Hallelujah) Glorious Is Our God No Eye Has Seen Everlasting

As a new band using an old name, New Zealand's current incarnation of the Parachute Band is a little bit like Sonicflood, though in this case, the original band of the '90s officially sanctioned passing their torch to a team of worship leaders. The reboot could also be compared to Hillsong United, intended as a younger, somewhat livelier band for a new generation of worshipers. But then just as Hillsong's worship teams have grown increasingly similar, Parachute Band 2.0 isn't all that different from its predecessor.

Not to suggest that Parachute Band isn't a little more modern sounding. That much was apparent with 2007's Roadmaps and Revelations, and now the younger band sounds even tighter on Technicolor. Evidenced by driving anthems like "Glorious Is Our God," "Shout It Out," and "No Eye Has Seen," their sound has become considerably fuller, particularly in the bass and drums, while using a lot more synthesizer. Songs like these reflect the band's commitment to reaching younger listeners.

Although the band plays well, the production is not the same quality as other top tier worship bands. And though Parachute Band has an energetic sound, it's a boring one without a unique musical identity or memorable songs—a problem the original Parachute Band also wrestled with. Some would say the only focus here is glorifying God, not creativity, but remember similar sounding worship bands like Circadian Rhythm and Among Thorns from back in 2001. Where are they now? Precisely: worship bands fade quickly when artistry is left out of the worship music equation.

Technicolor suffers most from a lack of pacing. It absolutely sags in the middle from "Living Rain" to "In Liberty (Hallelujah)," one slow ballad blurring with another, offering nothing more than the usual praise rhetoric about finding freedom by being washed clean by God. The one song that's truly memorable is the closing ballad "Everlasting," not as much for its familiar words of praise, but because it features the Tanzanian choir The Sowers Group—it's the only time Parachute Band significantly changes up their worshipful sound.

The CD is packaged with a DVD that includes live footage from the 2007 Parachute Festival in New Zealand, behind-the-scenes footage, and a moving testimony from lead singer Omega Levine about overcoming depression. All bonuses to an album that will surely satisfy those who still appreciate every worship album for what it is: a musical response to the love and glory of God. But for discriminating listeners in search of artistic modern worship that uniquely inspires the soul, Technicolor is more by the numbers than it is creative expression.

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