Album Reviews

Music You Don't Know You Like Yet

Susan Werner

The Gospel Truth

2007-03-23

Like her friend, Erin McKeown, Susan Werner's been bouncing all over the musical map lately. Werner's last disc was full of jazz standards and similar originals. This time, she's gone into the world of church-gospel music and used that genre as a backdrop to her themes of faith and doubt. But don't mistake this for a gospel record, since Werner's at least as heavy on the doubt as she is the faith. From the opener: "You know you'd damn me if you could/ but my friend that's simply not your call/If God is great and God is good/why is your heaven so small?" And from "Our Father": "Lord lead us not into temptation/but deliver us from those who think they're You." Werner's beautiful voice and well-constructed songs are deep into a spiritual wrestling match that she doesn't resolve at the CD's end. But that's good, since that puts her in the company of most human beings. She sings in "Probably Not": "Is there a God above?/Is there eternal love?/Probably not," hedging her bets at the end of the tune -- "If He hands me a heavenly crown/ would I dare to turn Him down?/Probably not." Open, honest and fair dialogue about religion and faith -- for once. My favorite of the set: "Did Trouble Me" (#4). MJVD Note hidden track at #12. “Untitled”

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Compiled by the WYCE Journalism Club

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