Dustin Kensrue
The Water and The Blood


4.0
excellent

Review

by thecolorbrown USER (17 Reviews)
October 1st, 2013 | 95 replies | 6,827 views


Release Date: 10/01/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Kensrue fought the good fight, and put his lyrical craftiness to the test, writing songs for the Church in a way that broke the standards.

5 of 7 thought this review was well written

Thrice: a band that upped the ante of lyricism in rock music. Honestly, what other band had rock songs written in sonnet form? Dustin Kensrue, the brilliant mind behind Thrice, the man who brought us the lyrics of “The Artist in the Ambulance”, “T & C”, and “Beggars”, is now singing Christian Worship music … a genre that is known for sounding like U2 and Coldplay wannabes, with lyrics that spit out overused clichés and repeat the same lines for minutes on end. Kensrue said himself:

“I would have laughed five years ago if you told me I would one day be a pastor putting out a worship record … I would have told you that I don’t even like worship music. I didn’t like how so much of it was full of unhelpful and unhealthy theology. I didn’t like how much of the worship music culture was insulated and backward-looking that it no longer had any relation to any music outside of its own bubble.”

So what changed? Quite simply, Kensrue fought the good fight, and put his lyrical craftiness to the test, writing songs for the Church in a way that broke the standards. Whether or not you are a believer in Christ, you can appreciate Kensrue’s passion for his faith, and his boldness to sing explicitly the same Christian messages he had been singing with a veil all these years. If you don’t understand that last sentence, go back and read the lyrics to your favorite Thrice songs … you might be surprised at what you find.

Musically, this album resembles a combination of Thrice and Please Come Home. In terms of genre, one could say it is indie/blues/folk/rock/post-rock … or you can just take it as it is. Kensrue has always had a knack for picking the right sound for the right words, and this album is truly the epitome of that pairing. The opening track, “Rejoice”, and upbeat “Grace Alone” are perfect examples of happy and upbeat songs that sing with the same mood. In the former, Kensrue sings: “We are children of the promise / The beloved of the Lord / Won with everlasting kindness / Bought with sacrificial blood / Bringing reconciliation / To a world that longs to know / The affections of a Father / Who will never let them go.” Such joyful news, and the music does nothing but help lift up that joy. On the other side of the pendulum, the dark and slow-building crooner, “It’s Not Enough,” which was originally written to be a Thrice song, fits its lyrics like a glove, as Kensrue sings of how no fame, person, thing could be enough to make him whole.

Ironically enough, what is perhaps the best-written song on this record has its lyrics almost entirely taken from the Bible in the book of Isaiah 53. “Suffering Servant” is a dark portrait of the troubled life and traumatic death of Jesus of Nazareth. However, in Thrice-like form, the song turns over on its head into a symphonic crescendo to end the song with lyrics that proclaim His victorious resurrection and exaltation. Once again, regardless of your beliefs, these songs can be enjoyed by simply experiencing the way that the music and lyrics combine to create an emotional experience.

Fans of Thrice and Dustin Kensrue will hopefully give this album a listen no matter what their beliefs are. However, if you are a Christian, and worship is an aspect of your life, these songs will absolutely turn your attention away from the musician and towards the Lord. Some may be upset that Kensrue chose this over Thrice, but as a Christian I cannot express enough how happy I am for Kensrue to have gone in this direction, and I am excited to see the effects of such a great Worship album.

Top Tracks:
Suffering Servant
Rejoice
It's Not Enough
The Voice of the Lord (especially for Thrice fans)



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user ratings (42)
Chart.
3.4
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
cinaedus
September 30th 2013



26298 Comments


true artistic brilliance

Digging: Anberlin - Lowborn

Calc
September 30th 2013



12031 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

I hope this gets taken down.

Digging: Kashiwa Daisuke - April. #02

cinaedus
September 30th 2013



26298 Comments


why? according to this page the release date is october 1 and the date at the top says october 1 so it must be the 1st where this guy lives

Calc
September 30th 2013



12031 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

yeah you right then I'll say I hope someone else writes a better one. this is like 80% a synopsis of the what the songs say or backstory.

cinaedus
September 30th 2013



26298 Comments


yeah it's little more than a lyrical analysis

SatelliteYears
September 30th 2013



190 Comments


Made me want to check it out. Good writeup.

Apollo
September 30th 2013



10267 Comments


Can't wait to hear this in whole. The mans one of the best songwriters of our generation.

XingKing
September 30th 2013



10086 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Agreeing that I hope another review shows up soon because this is really just about how Dustin is a Christian than it is about the music

Calc
September 30th 2013



12031 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

yet 3 for 3 in well writtenness....

XingKing
September 30th 2013



10086 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Not anymore

TheSupernatural
October 1st 2013



1052 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

I'll probably be writing a review for this later this week. Where are people listening to the album anyways? Have they already bought it?

XingKing
October 1st 2013



10086 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

People who preordered got it early but it looks like no one has leaked it yet and it comes out tomorrow/today anyway

TheSupernatural
October 1st 2013



1052 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

If the three songs I've heard so far are the best ones on the record, this could end up being a 1.5 or 1. I don't want to make a review about theology, but about the music. "It's Not Enough" was a decent enough song, but nothing to get excited about.

What I read today, directly from Dustin, is that the music is intentionally simple so that people can get it and sing along the first time. When Nickelback does this, they get 1's and 2's. When Dustin does it, he gets 4's? Just because the lyrical content is worshipping a god instead of worshipping popularity, sex, and simple emotions, doesn't make it better music.

Ecnalzen
October 1st 2013



6398 Comments


He has such a great voice though...

I take its not enough to carry it?

XingKing
October 1st 2013



10086 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

It's Not Enough is brilliant to my ears and that song alone is a 4.5 because of the way it climaxes and builds and his vocal performance, which has only gotten better through the years. The music may not be your thing, but I don't see how you could consider what you've heard so far to be "poor". This is absolutely nothing like the simplicity of Nickelback..

someguest
October 1st 2013



20344 Comments


I'm interested in hearing this, but...

"Rock of Ages"


Digging: Your Old Droog - Your Old Droog

Ecnalzen
October 1st 2013



6398 Comments


Yeah... Nickelback has pretty much no noteworthy qualities, except for being so bad that it unifies peoples hatred towards them.

someguest
October 1st 2013



20344 Comments


The clear difference between Kensrue and Nickelback is Kensrue is one of the humans on this planet that isn't completely deplorable, and that alone makes any music he creates echelons above any trite Nickelback pumps out.

cinaedus
October 1st 2013



26298 Comments


why the italics on interested, guest?

someguest
October 1st 2013



20344 Comments


why the italics on interested, guest?


I'm a conflicted atheist.



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