25 Albums You Should Already Own in 2012

So we are half way done with 2012! Its crazy to think the time has gone so quickly. Cornerstone Festival is about to have its final event, Thrice has called it quits, and mewithoutYou has returned from the dead!  Around the nation we are getting ready for an election, and school is out for most of our readers. Oh yea, and we launched a new website! Here in Texas we are hitting triple digit temperatures, which means that it is time to give you guys a check list of the best stuff that has come out so far in 2012.

The Vespers- The Fourth Wall
To Speak Of WolvesFind Your Worth, Come Home
Sean Michel - Back To The Delta
Tallhart - Bloodlines EP
The RocketboysBuild Anyway
Sara WatkinsSun Midnight Sun
The Royal ApplebaumsEarth EP
mewithoutYouTen Stories
JolietTruth Cannot Be Destroyed By Burning Pages
Beautiful EulogySatellite Kite
Jenny & TylerOpen Your Doors
Impending DoomBaptized in Filth
Alabama ShakesBoys & Girls
Damien JuradoMaraqopa
Joe PugThe Great Despiser
NnekaSoul Is Heavy
Ruthie Foster - Let It Burn
Brian Courtney WilsonSo Proud
Shoot Like Dead Men – Unworthy EP
O’BrotherGarden Window
Heath McNeaseThrift Store Jesus
From The Eyes of ServantsChange The World
The Welcome WagonPrecious Remedies Against Satan’s Devices
SonsKeep Quiet
The BurialLights & Perfections

Dont fret though, because there is so much more to come before New Years 2013, with albums on their way from The ChariotProject 86PropagandaJosh GarrelstobyMacSixpence None The RicherThe Gaslight Anthem and many others! To see all the new music coming to you from your favorite artists, feel free to check out our Release Dates page. Its gonna be good!

If you think we have missed anything, feel free to comment and tell us what you love in 2012

New Releases For June 12th, 2012


Change The World
From The Eyes of Servants

Red Chord Records
Melodic Hardcore
Buy: Amazon MP3


Precious Remedies Against Satans Devices
The Welcome Wagon

Asthmatic Kitty
Indie Folk/Worship
Buy: Amazon

Free MP3 Album Download:ME- Hamden

cover

Okey, so this is a little late coming in, but I just had to share this with you guys.

So first of all, is that not one of the creepiest album covers you have ever seen? This is Hamden by goth/folk artist ME ( real name Minco Eggersman). I can only describe this as a mix between Doug Burr, Wovenhand, and The Welcome Wagon. Do I have you attention now? Check out some of the press release for this release:

In spring 2009, Minco Eggersman travelled to the town of Hamden, put on an old preacher’s suit, and set up camp in an old, empty church. The musician, producer and record label owner had spent half the winter in bed at home in Amsterdam, feeling ill, tired, and generally miserable. Though he’d been forced to cancel a tour with his band at the close of every day, in the end, music seemed the only possible cure. Minco decided to take a plane to Chicago to take some time off and buy his dream guitar, an old Gibson J-45, and started writing songs for what would become his most personal solo album yet, Hamden.

go check it out for yourself

Download ME-Hamden

The One21 Essential 100 Pt.13

essential100 copy

The One21 Essential 100 is a collection of albums that represent the best in creativity, innovation, and originality in music. This is not a “best of” list, nor is it influenced by album sales, or even popularity. Our attempt with this series is to highlight the gems, those rare albums that push boundaries and encourage new ways of thinking; both musical and philosophically. In our opinion, the music highlighted in this series is the “good stuff”.

Simply what this is going to be is a list of 100 albums from Christian music artists that we think you should own. Like our website, most genres will be represented, and some of the albums will be from as far back as the 60s, to as current as 2009. Each week we will post five albums, in no real order, with descriptions, album artwork, and places to buy the music.

Check out Pt.1
Check out Pt.2
Check out Pt.3
Check out Pt.4
Check out Pt.5
Check out Pt.6
Check out Pt.7
Check out Pt.8
Check out Pt. 9
Check out Pt.10
Check out Pt.11
Check out Pt.12

pigeon john is clueless
Pigeon John Is…Clueless
Pigeon John

2002
Buy this album: Amazon MP3, iTunes
Perhaps if you cant understand the appeal on Pigeon John Is…Clueless from the opening track, you may never get it. But that is okey, because that is whole point.

In 2002 Pigeon John broke off from his LA Symphony crew to release a collection of songs he had been recording for the past several years. The result is an album that finds a young man struggling with his own identity; not quite ready to become a full on adult, but aware of his responsibilities an emcee no longer in his teens. Pigeon John‘s world class wit is always present, but he doesn’t use it as a crutch in which his entire style is based. It is funny that his earliest work is perhaps his most complex, interesting, and deep.

On top of the content, the actual music in Pigeon John Is…Clueless is perhaps the gem here. Too many times we focus on lyrics when it comes to emcees, but Pigeon John also has a knack to find beats the suit his personality in a way that cant be explained until you hear it. Elements of Q-Tip, and his former crew are always present, but Pigeon John Is…Clueless is a bold declaration from a then up and coming emcee who refuses to follow any body else’s rules, even if it means working a 9-5 to make it happen.
Highlights: Los Angeles Rap Music, Clueless, Rap Contest

World Wide Message Tribe - Heatseeker
Heatseeker
World Wide Message Tribe

1998
Buy this album: Amazon
The U.K.’s World Wide Message Tribe were the holy herald in the 90’s Christian dance scene with both street-cred and Jesus testimony. World Wide Message Tribe cultivated a hybrid of house, techno, hip-hop, and rap with the idea that if the booty shakes, the soul will follow. Adding a touch of ambient along with a disco streak to its glorious mess of praise, World Wide Message Tribe took the 1999 Dove Award for Rap/Hip-Hop/Dance Album of the Year with Heatseeker.

With Heatseaker, World Wide Message Tribe delivered an album that reflected dance music trends of the late 90’s. With influences from bands like the Chemical Brothers and Prodigy, tracks like “Heatseeker,” and “Hypocrite,” were hard driving techno screams. “Messiah” and “Lift It Up” were straight up house dance tracks. In “Hypocrite” the singer talks about being himself a “Hypocrite” for not always being willing to share Christ with others, an idea taken from Paul’s letter to the Romans. Also appearing is a house version of Bob Dylan‘s “Precious Angel.” As usual, the lyrics are blatantly Christian but never formalistic.
Highlights: Hypocrite, Messiah, Lift It

Wovenhand
Wovenhand
Wovenhand

2003
Buy this album: iTunes, Amazon
What we all thought was David Eugene Edward’s solo foray while on a break from the legendary 16 Horsepower, Wovenhand ultimately killed 16 Horsepower and has surpassed that band’s shattering vision and singular presence on the Christian music scene. Mostly recorded by Edwards in his Colorado studio, the debut, Wovenhand, retains the dark vision and gothic folk elements of the previous band but softens the music with keyboards and muted percussion. The lyrics are at times David’s most spiritual and even sentimental, but what a distressing sentimentality.

The bookends of “My Russia” and “Your Russia” recount personal conviction and promise ultimate sanctification, the slip and the grip of grace, with a devastating intensity and plain sincerity that rivals anything David Eugene Edwards has ever recorded with Wovenhand or 16 Horsepower. Add to that a brooding, stomping cover of Bill Wither’s “Ain’t No sunshine” and you have a debut of devastating power and beauty.
Highlights: My Russia/Your Russia, Arrow Head, Ain’t No Sunshine

La Dispute-Somewhere at the Bottom of the River Between Vega and Altair
Somewhere at the Bottom of the River Between Vega and Altair
La Dispute

2008
Buy this album: Amazon, iTunes
Pure and genuine emotion and passion is so hard to find in music these days. Most times passion is mistaken for busy or loud. Emotion is mistaken for tone. It is rare you can hear either true emotion or passion partnered with true talent and ability. The moment I saw La Dispute ate Cornerstone Festival in 2007, I knew I had found a band with all four. In 2008, they released a monster of an album called Somewhere at the Bottom of the River Between Vega and Altair. I am still trying to understand it.

The band’s sound lies somewhere in the bombastic punk/rock furiousity of At The Drive-In, and the steady intelligence of mewithoutYou. The band pours into every song three times the ability of their peers, and somehow are able to focus it in a way that makes every valley feel like a warm summer day, and every explosion feel like being pushed off of a cliff.

Somewhere at the Bottom of the River Between Vega and Altair is a always attacking collection of songs that deal with thoughts of regret, questioning, hope, and anger. Every thought meticulously planned out, every time change carefully executed. For any fan of post-hardcore, progressive punk, or just really good music, this is a must have.
Highlights: Amazon, Bury Your Flame, Andria

Welcome To The Welcome Wagon
Welcome To The Welcome Wagon
The Welcome Wagon

2008
Buy this album: Amazon, iTunes
Don’t let the release date of Welcome To The Welcome Wagon fool you, the music contained within is not of this era. Yet, it is more of the Great Depression era of gospel/folk, easily played in a church or kitchen depending on the inspiration.

You see, a few years back, The Reverend Thomas Vito Aiuto and his wife Monique started teaching themselves how to play old traditional hymns because they felt that the songs needed to be played again. After a while, one of their congregation members took notice and offered to help arrange a produce a CD for them. They said yes.

That congregation member was Sufjan Stevens, and what was created between the three members of The Welcome Wagon is at all times spiritual, joyful, fun, and reverent. These aren’t “jazzed up” versions of hymns, so hidden beneath walls of slick production that they no longer resemble their original form. These are rough, stripped down takes on traditional songs that both celebrate and rejuvenate the songs for a new generation.

It look likes that this may be the only thing we ever hear from Vito and Monquie, as they are still tending to their flock, but the joy and release you get from listening to Welcome To The Welcome Wagon may just be enough.
Highlights: Up On a Mountain, He Never Said a Mumblin’ Word, But For You Who Fear My Name

Paste Magazine Launches Songs For Haiti

It is hard to ignore the immense travesty that has occurred in Haiti following a record breaking earthquake that has a death toll in the thens of thousands already. Since the quake, the world has rallied to help the people of Haiti, some by going there, some by sending aid. Paste Magazine has stepped up encourage the giving with a cool little deal. Read below to find out:

Like so many others, Paste has been moved by the tragedy facing the survivors of the Haitian earthquake. We have launched “Songs for Haiti” (songsforhaiti.org) as a way to raise money and keep awareness high. A diverse array of artists — Ludacris, Of Montreal, Andrew Bird, Hanson, Umphrey’s McGee, Switchfoot, Bruce Cockburn and over 200 others — have donated MP3s (many unreleased) for us to give everyone who donates to help Haiti.

You can donate through Paste or to a charity of your choice (just tell us), and you will have access to our Download Vault and 250 songs (and counting). We don’t think people should donate to the relief efforts in Haiti just to get a reward. But this gives Paste and artists a way to help, using the thing we’re most passionate about—music.

To donate, click below. 100% of money contributed through “Songs for Haiti” will be spread among three charities active in Haiti: Doctors Without Borders, Red Cross, and Wyclef Jean’s Yele Haiti Earthquake Fund.

Visit the Songs For Haiti Website

Many of the artists that we cover on this website have taken part in this, so please check out the list below and go help out:

Andy Zipf- “See No Saviour”, I Sing Hallelujah
Ben + Vesper- “LuvInIdleness”, “An Honest Bluff”, “Especially We”
Bill Mallonee- “The Ghosts I Run With”
Deas Vail- “The Things You Were”
Derek Webb- “Heaven (Pre-Mix)”
Dignan- “Tangled Woods”
Gasoline Heart- “Armadillo”
Katie Herzig- “Waiting For My Night”
Lenny Smith- “I Saw A Mighty Angel”
Sandra McKracken- “10,000 Angels (Love Has Come)”
Switchfoot- “We Are Bound”
The Rocketboys- “Triumphs Of Love & Fortune”
The Welcome Wagon- “I Am Not Skilled To Understand”
Wovenhand- “Kicking Bird”, “Dirty Blue”, “Bleary-Eyed Duty”, ” White Bird”

and Im sure I missed a few

Visit the Songs For Haiti Website

Weekly Update 8/21/09

Hello to all the amazing people who read our site, we love you. Really, your participation in this website makes everything worth it.  Every time you visit, it counts as only good stuff for us as a group.  So, thank you….

If you will remember, a few months back, we announced that we were going to tone things down a little bit on the site.  At the time, we were putting up three posts a day, beginning to build our artist database, and trying to manage our emerging “ezine” persona.  In all honesty, we never intended to use The One21 as a magazine-type website. Our original idea for this blog was to simply communicate our passion and try to begin to introduce the world to a larger perspective of “Christian music”in modern culture.

Well, God, as He always does, has His own plans for things, and seven months in to our existence we were doing interviews,  reporting on news, and in general acting like more of a magazine.

However, the true intention of this site, The One21 Music, was to build a tool that could fully introduce the people to the vast body of music made by believers. So, in May, we officially began to build our artists database. We started strong, found out we weren’t doing it right, started over, added a few features, went back and added those features to the existing profiles, went back and edited, and then once again began to add new artists, and here we are.

Confused? Dont worry, all of that was my long way of saying that we are now 260 artists strong in our database, and every week we are adding on average 6-10 new entries.  The profiles span over 10 genres, 3 categories, and over 120 styles (sub-genres).  We are doing our best to make sure that any fan, of any type of music will have a place on this website.  You can go see our progress by clicking on the “Artist Search” tab up at the top of this page, or you can click here.
Also, if there is particular artist you want to check out, you can get to them quickly by typing in www.one21music.com/(artist name) into the address bar on your browser (so an example would be www.one21music.com/owl city).  If you dont get anything, it most likely means we have not gotten that particular artist into the system yet, but don’t fret because we are working on it.

Alright, with so much going on, Chuck and I thought it would be a good idea to start giving you guys weekly rundowns on what is happening here on the site.  So at the end of the week, we will recap what we have been writing about on the blog, in the database, and what is happening in our company.  Our hope is that not only will you stay up to date to what is happening on the blog, and what new artists you may want to check out, but also that you would get to know us as people and as a company. So, here we go, this our first real update so I hope you enjoy:

General Site Updates:

-First of all, you may notice that we have a new banner. The old one was cool and everything, but as we turn the corner on this website, we wanted to go with something a bit “cleaner” looking. Plus, I (Ian) was really tired of looking at myself every time I looked at the site (yes, if you remember the guy in the banner, that was a big ‘ol profile of me, myself, and I).

-We launched our “Album Release” page this week. this page contains dates, titles, and album artwork(when available) for all the upcoming CDs from Christian artists. It will be updated often, and in future “update” posts I will keep you up to date on what we have added to the page. Go check out all the upcoming releases here.

-We got rid of our “Music Artists” and “Christian Labels” tabs. With the database, we don’t need the “Artist” tab, although you may see a newer, more accessible version of it pop up in the near future. All the information from the “Christian Labels” can now be found in our “Links” page. You can click on the “Links” tab at the top of the page or just click here

.

Blog/Article Updates:

-New Releases-The big release this week came from MuteMath, but Manic Drive and Take It Back! also released somke new stuff this week.
-Music News- new videos from John Reuben, Paramore, and Philmont, along with new album info for Abandon Kansas, and a lot of bands leaving their labels and others getting signed.
-Free Download- a new little DJ album from hip-hop artist Playdough. Very strange, but hard to pass up for free.
-Voices Of The Underground2 Pt.1- Begin a new “season” of our round table interview series by asking Thousand Foot Krutch, White Collar Sideshow, Gileah Taylor, and many others what they love about music.

Artist Database Updates:

-Chuck has moved around some genre definitions to best suite our Praise & Worship, and Gospel fans.

Profiles added:
Moby
Owl City
Mindy Smith
Adrienne Young
Iris Dement
MuteMath
Son Lux
Buddy Miller
Bodies Of Water
The Welcome Wagon
Sufjan Stevens
Danielson
Josh Garrels
Listener
Preson Phillips
Gileah Taylor (Gileah & The Ghost Train)
Wonder
Love Begotten
Bradley Hathaway

Also, this weekend we will be holding a meeting to try and figure out a possible One21 Fest here in Austin, Texas. If you are reading this and have some ideas, please speak up. Until next week, God bless, and have a great weekend.

Christian Music Is Not A Genre, It Is A Movement

The Best Of Voices Of The Undergound

voicesoftheundergroundlogo-copy22

For those that dont know, Voices Of The Underground was a series we developed to reach a broad range of opinions on some the topics we talk about here on the website. The idea was simple, ask a large group of musicians the same 15 questions, then roll out the responses one question at a time per week.   What resulted was an amazing ride through the hearts and minds of the artists that are creating the music you love. As we gear up for a new Voices Of The Underground, we thought it would be cool to highlight some our favorite responses from the 15 questions that we sent out months ago. Enjoy:

1.What do you love about music?

dirt DIRT (underground hip-hop artist and founder of Shadow Of The Locust)
Dirt
Music has the authority to move people… LITERALLY move them! From one emotion to the next. Music can save a life or end it. Music can change the atmosphere, good or bad. Music can start a needed revolution and quell a dictatorship. We receive music through our ears, but it is translated in our souls. Our brains deciphers the organized sound, but our hearts move us to action with the messages depicted.

2.What are some of your favorite albums/CDs?

hylandjon Jon (lead singer/guitarist for independent pop/rock band Hyland)
Hyland
Favorite albums… I’d say the blue Jars of Clay CD was one of my all time favorites.
I wore that thing out… DC Talk’s Jesus Freak and Supernatural are right up there. Anything by Anberlin. I’m huge on the Beatles. People would be surprised to find that I love Michael Jackson. He’s a genius. I have a rare B-side track of his that is just the vocal tracks soloed from the song. It’ll leave you speechless

3.What is the best thing about making music?

amycourts Amy Courts (independent pop/folk artist)
Amy Courts
I love all of it, really, because different parts of who I am, at my core, go into each aspect. In the writing, I’m forced to dig into the depths and offer what’s there, however it looks or feels, and suffer (yet enjoy!) a sort of vulnerability found nowhere else. But when it comes out in song, it’s utter relief. In recording, I love the daunting task of taking a skeleton of a song and giving it muscle, tissue, skin, and a face by doing my best – with the help of gifted producers and musicians – to make a full body out of the bones. And the live performance is like icing on the cake, where I get to pour my heart out and share something very raw and real with people who may or may not “get” it. And there is always such deep satisfaction in finding and knowing the people with whom it resonates. A new community is born.

4.What is your opinion of the music industry today?

sethinfrontendervence Seth (singer for independent hard rock band Endeverance)
Endeverance
My opinion on the music industry is that it has lost its genuine quality…I mean you look now it’s all about the popstar and not about being the artist, it’s about selling records and not making amazing art…I mean you look at American Idol all the other stupid Idol competitions, and my personal opinion is that they have ruined the music industry…Yes great musicians and artists have come from these places but the way winning is advertised on these shows is that it is all about being a star. And I just look back and see like Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, and The Beatles, and it wasn’t about being a star it was about writing what you had on your mind and making the best music possible…And what needs to change is that the record companies have to quit prostituting all the artist’s and their music…I mean just get behind an artist and let them write a great song…Not maybe a hit song but a song that can strike a chord with the people and not just another useless pop song…

5.What impact has the digital age of music had on the industry?

echocastbandwb8David ( singer for independent nu-metal band Echocast)
Echocast
I think the digital age of music has made it a lot easier for smaller bands to reach a broader audience, but at the same time, its a lot more difficult to make a living playing music…

6. Who is Jesus Christ to you?

the_welcome_wagon_-_0938-c Vito (half of Asthamic Kitty indie/folk band The Welcome Wagon)
The Welcome Wagon
I believe everything the Bible says about Jesus. He is God’s Son, fully divine and fully human. And though he was in the form of God, he did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped. He made himself nothing, and took the form of a servant. Being born in the likeness of men, and being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

7.What is Christian music?

brookewaggner Brooke Waggoner(solo indie/pop artist on SlowMoon Music)
Brooke Waggoner
Anything that is created from the heart of believers: CCM, indie, rock ‘n’ roll, experimental – there’s Christians in all of these places.

8.What is your opinion of the Christian music industry?

mahoganyjones Mahogany Jones(independent hip-hop artist)
Mahogany Jones
I think that there is good and bad. There are people with pure motives to minister the gospel to people who need to understand the importance of a relationship with Christ, and there are people who use their gift as a means not to promote the gospel but themselves, and I feel that if we aren’t careful to ask God to keep us humble that we may be in for a rude awakening.

9.Do you think the Christian music scene is still important?

christaylor Chris Taylor (BEC solo artist/song writer)
Chris Taylor
Oh, it’s important. So, important that Christians should know when not to participate in a lot of things that go on in the scene. Just like any scene there are pitfalls but for Christians the Supremacy of Christ should be the primary goal in all we do.

10.Do you think people are more receptive or against artists of faith today?

domicballi Dominic Balli (independent Reggae/hip-hop artist)
Dominic Balli
If you’re trying to make an impact in the mainstream music world, branding yourself as a “Christian Artist” can be a hindrance for sure. Why? Two reasons I think. 1) True or not, Christian music has been stereo typed as not being as good musically as mainstream music. 2) The way that most Christian artists write music, the world can’t relate to it. The don’t know what we’re talking about when we use words like, God is “Holy” or “Glory to the King”. So they just brush it off as “Church music”.
So I don’t think it’s a matter of being taken seriously or not, I just think that to most people in the mainstream, they just don’t understand it and if they do understand it, a lot of the song writing is about 10 years behind the mainstream, so they’re not that interested in it from a musical stand point either.

11.Do you consider yourself a Christian musician?

runkidrundavidoneinhatDavid (lead singer/guitarist for Tooth & Nail pop/rock band Run Kid Run)
Run Kid Run
I hate this battle people put too much emphasis on this sure Christan musician whatever you want to call me..I’m a christian I play music our band plays tons of Christian events churches etc. So I guess you would say yes…but you wouldn’t label a doctor or a roofer saying yes I’m a Christian roofer..not that it’s a bad thing see it doesn’t matter people can call me a Christian musician or not it doesn’t matter.

12.What is the hardest part about being a musician today?

heathstripsinirons Heath(bass player for Holdfast Records metal band In Irons)
In Irons
Being a musician, overall, is hard. Its hard learning to play an instrument, finding people to play with, writing music, getting a band off the ground, finding transportation and just holding it together. It boils down to how bad you want it to happen. But if you’re able to get it all worked out, it can be some of the most fun you’ve ever had.

13.What responsibility (if any) does an artist have to it’s listeners?
dirt DIRT(underground hip-hop artist and founder of Shadow Of The Locust)
Dirt
I have always found myself frustrated with anyone who thinks an artist does not have any responsibility to his/her listeners. If you hold that opinion then make music for yourself, play it to yourself, buy your own CD and keep it to yourself. Music should motivate. We all have to decide what messages we really want to convey through our art, but at the end of the day, if it doesn’t motivate someone from one place to another, then what good was all our effort.
Sometimes people need to hate something… and music can make that happen.
Sometimes people need to realize something…. and music can make that happen.
Sometimes people need to be in love with something, fear something, grapple with something, revolt against something, embrace something… and music can make that happen.

14.Where do you see the music industry going?

brandonsayyouwill Brandon (bass player for independent pop/rock band Say You Will)
Down for a while more and then up up up up up. I think music will eventually all be free and they’ll use that as promotion to get people to shows and generate other sources of income for their artists. That’s essentially what is happening now. Some people still buy music on line though so they’re keeping the system barely a float. When they stop I think this will happen.

15.What is the best memory of your career so far?

domicballi Dominic Balli (independent Reggae/hip-hop artist)
Dominic Balli
Brazil, October 2008. 22 shows in 24 days. The most tired tour you can imagine but every single night we saw hundreds or thousands of people respond to the gospel. At the end of the day, the TV shows, Radio spots, screaming fans didn’t make the hard work worth it. Only knowing that thousands of people entered from death in to life. That’s the only thing that made it worth it.

Voices Of The Underground Pt.15

voicesoftheundergroundlogo-copy2

Several weeks ago One21 Music posed fifteen questions to a number of music artists in the Christian music scene, ranging from the light-hearted to the deeply spiritual. We received many responses, some very helpful, and some…. not so much. Some of the answers were short and sweet, some were extensive and eloquent. Many expressed frustrations with the current landscape of the music industry, while others were hopeful for a future of uncertainty. We heard from guys who had been performing for years, and bands that are just now starting to get their names heard. From indie rock to hip-hop, from hardcore to worship, the Christian music scene spoke back to us. Realize that these answers are by the people making the music that you are listening to, and these are un-edited and real. The opinions expressed don’t always reflect ours, but we aren’t perfect, right?

Need to catch up?

Read Pt.1: What Do You Love About Music?
Read Pt.2: What Are Some Of Your Favorite Albums/CDs?
Read Pt.3: What Is The Best Thing About Making Music?
Read Pt.4: What Is Your Opinion Of The Music Industry?
Read Pt.5: What Impact Has The Digital Age Of Music Had On The Industry?
Read Pt.6: Who Is Jesus Christ To You?
Read Pt.7: What Is Christian Music?
Read Pt.8: What Is Your Opinion On The Christian Music Industry?
Read Pt.9: Do You Think The Christian Music Scene Is Still Important?
Read Pt.10: Do You Think People Are More Receptive Or Resistant to Artists Of Faith Today?
Read Pt.11: Do You Consider Yourself A Christian Musician? In What Way Does It Affect Your Music?
Read Pt.12: What Is The Hardest Part About Being A Musician Today?
Read Pt.t13: What Responsibility (if any) Does An Artist Have To It’s Listener?
Read Pt.14: Where Do You See The Music Industry Going?

This our final week of Voices Of The Underground. It has been a long journey over the past fifteen weeks, and I think we have covered a lot of ground. My hope with this series was to allow you to see past the music for a moment, and really see to the heart of these individuals who travel the country (and the globe), sleep in vans,, and create the soundtrack to your life. we leave this series on a lite note, and simply ask our artists to share stories about found memories. NOTE: There is a announcement at the end of this post, so do yourself a favor and read to the end.

What is the best memory that you have of your career so far?


mahoganyjones Mahogany Jones(independent hip-hop artist)
Mahogany Jones
Completing my first full length album and getting the copies back shrink wrapped with bar code and all. All I remember thinking is “Thank you God. Thank you.” And crying. Next to that I would have to say the first my space message I got where a girl told me how one of my songs caused her to re-consider who she was in Christ and how it encouraged her.

a thousnd times repent dowd Dowd(guitar for Tribunal Records metal band A Thousand Times Repent)
A Thousand Times Repent
I have been in bands since I was 14 so I have a few goods ones. The best ones are when kids tell you that your music has changed their life for the better. That is what makes you realize that people do listen and the love of Jesus is reaching out and waiting for them to accept.

the_welcome_wagon_-_0938-cVito(half of Asthamic Kitty indie/folk band The Welcome Wagon)
The record release show we played here in Brooklyn. We had it at in the building where our church meets, and most of our church was there, but lots of other folks, too. It was like a big present that those couple of hundred of people gave to us, and hopefully that we, in some small measure, gave back to them.

hill Brett Hill (Paradigm Nashville solo country artist)
Brett Hill
Hearing testimonies from folks who purchased my material for someone and a soul was saved because of it. This happens on a regular basis, and it is by far the biggest drive I have that keeps me going.

christaylor Chris Taylor (BEC solo artist/song writer)
Chris Taylor
The flattery of getting signed was fun. Putting my flesh aside I would say just getting to make a record. I got a glimpse of some of what believers will get to do in eternity involving music. Investigating music and seeing just how far it goes.

brookewaggner Brooke Waggoner(solo indie/pop artist on SlowMoon Music)
Brooke Waggoner
My first CD-release show for my EP, “Fresh Pair of Eyes.” I was brand new to the Nashville scene and the support that night drew was breathtaking. My career really began the following week and my life hasn’t been the same ever since.

domicballi Dominic Balli (independent Reggae/hip-hop artist)
Dominic Balli
Brazil, October 2008. 22 shows in 24 days. The most tired tour you can imagine but every single night we saw hundreds or thousands of people respond to the gospel. At the end of the day, the TV shows, Radio spots, screaming fans didn’t make the hard work worth it. Only knowing that thousands of people entered from death in to life. That’s the only thing that made it worth it.

darknessbeforedawngabeGabe(guitarist for Bombworks Records metal band Darkness Before Dawn)
I don’t know if I a best memory I’ve had to many! But definitely one of my favorites was one of our early shows and it was at one of the bigger venues in AZ and there was probably 1000 kids there. On our last song we called for a circle pit and the house lights came on and we looked at the crowed only to see every person in the venue running around the venue like the Indy 500 it was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen.

amycourts Amy Courts (independent pop/folk artist)
Amy Courts
Making my last record, ‘These Cold and Rusted Lungs’ was certainly the highlight so far. Writing each song was a wrenching but satisfying experience, and being able to put them all on record with a full body was and is the most rewarding thing I’ve done so far. Not only because of the heart infused in the songs and their production, but because it was an entirely independently produced and funded project. It was the first thing I’ve ever set out to do and done to the hilt.It’s my baby!

bryanblondstreakabandon Bryan (bass player for Forefront Records pop/rock band Abandon) Abandon
Seeing over 2000 kids get accept Christ in their hearts at a 7 Project we led worship at was insane. It blew me away and i will never forget it. God is so great!

echocastbandwb8David (singer for independent nu-metal band Echocast)
Echocast
I have so many fond memories of so many tours… The 2007 tour with Pillar was great. Every night we played for around 2000 people and the Pillar fans were very receptive and made us feel welcome… The touring we did with Stavesacre was great, the overall camaraderie of those trips was second to none…

deweyDewey Lybecker( independent solo singer/songwriter)
Dewey Lybecker
I would say the best memory or memories I’ve had so far we’re getting a couple emails from people or having people come up to me at concerts and telling me how my music has affected their lives. There was this one girl who wrote me telling me she wanted to commit suicide, and how listening to one of my songs made her think that even though life can be so hard sometimes, there’s always something to have hope about. She didn’t end up killing herself. But it’s cool to find that people feel through your music… it makes me want to write more songs.

dirt DIRT(underground hip-hop artist and founder of Shadow Of The Locust)
Dirt
9,000 people, Bushnille Illinois, passing gallons of red punch and loaves of bread to each other as we fellowshipped and took communion together after listening to some divinely inspiring music!

So here is the big annoucenment: we arnt done. it has been an amazing 15 weeks (more like 20 for me). Next week we are going to post a Best Of article, with all 15 questions in one place. Then starting July, a brand new Voices Of The Underground series will begin, with a new look, new questions, and new artists. Get pumped! Come back next week to find out who will be on the next Voices Of The Underground…

The(ONE)21 Music’s Best Albums Of 2008:Retrospective

We do indeed understand that it has been a long time since we should have posted our favorite albums of 2008. Sometimes though, hindsight makes you love certain CDs you hadn’t really listened to in a while. So we though it would be fitting, as how we are almost half way through 2009, to suggest and recommend our favorite CDs from 2008 made by Christian artists.  Feel free to tell us if you love the list or hate it, and we would love to hear your lists as well. These are not in order (besides for our favorite across the board), and they are not ranked in any other way.

The(ONE)21 Music’s best Christian music albums for 2008

Album of the year:

bodies-of-water-a-certain-feeling
Bodies of Water- A Certain Feeling Bodies of Water - A Certain Feeling
Deeply creative, lyrically dense, and unwaveringly beautiful. Bodies Of Water do more in their all to short sophomore album than most bands can in 15 songs. This is indie music at it’s finest.
For fans of: Anathallo, Polyphonic Spree, The Arcade Fire.
Category: The Light (whats this?)

Best of the rest:

advent-remove-the-earth
Advent- Remove the Earth Advent - Remove the Earth
Brutal, heavy, and unlike anything being done in the heavy music scene today. Advent take cues from the days of spirit-filled hardcore days with in your face lyrics, and waves of fuzzy distorted goodness. Bringing back the true sound of metalcore.
For fans of: Converge, Strongarm, Focused
Category: The Message (whats this?)

anathallo-canopy-glow
Anathallo- Canopy Glow
Anathallo - Canopy Glow
Intricate, progressive, and a collection of songs that improve an already good thing. Anathallo present their first real critical sucess with a profound maturity and skill that most bands two times their senior have yet to grasp. Canopy finds a brilliant band coming into their own, once again.
For fans of: Arcade Fire, mewithoutYou, Danielson
Category: The Light (whats this?)

becoming-the-archetype-dichotomy
Becoming The Archetype- Dichotomy Becoming the Archetype - Dichotomy
Intelligent, diverse, extreme metal played from a heart changed by Christ. Dichotomy resides as the best metal album no one talked about. A true classic in metal brutality.
For fans of: Living Sacrifice, Lamb Of God, Believer
Category: The Spiritual (whats this?)

brian-lee-his-orchestra-vol-1
Brian Lee & His Orchestra- Vol.1
Mellow, heartfelt, and a unique take on worship infused folk music. Vol.1 was one our first free downloads on this website, and Brian Lee & His Orchestra remain one of the best new bands flying their Christ flag in the folk/indie scene. An album to change your heart to.
For fans of: Pedro The Lion, Bon Iver, M.Ward
Category: The Spiritual (whats this?)

cool-hand-luke-the-sleeping-house
Cool Hand Luke- The Sleeping House Cool Hand Luke - The Sleeping House
Entrancing, heart-breaking, and the return of a great band in indie rock. Where Cool Hand Luke‘s last effort saw them experimenting in many different sounds, The Sleeping House sees the indie veterans achieving heavy atmosphere by simply playing progressive rock music. A diamond in their already stunning career.
For fans of: Sleeping At Last, The Fray, Sunny Day Real Estate
Category: The Spiritual (whats this?)

doug-burr-the-shawl
Doug Burr- The Shawl Doug Burr - The Shawl
Honest, simple, and masterful. Doug Burr‘s worship album (of sorts) brings one back to the true heart of singing before God, and The Shawl has the power to bring you to your knees and lighten your heart all at the same time. An album willing to be imperfect achieves quite the opposite.
For fans of: Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Iron & Wine
Category: The Spiritual (whats this?)

brooke-fraser-albertine
Brooke Fraser- Albertine Brooke Fraser - Albertine
Sweet, heartfelt, and able to put a good face on the pop genre again. Brooke Fraser walks an incredible line of teetering into the pop/contemporary Christian genre, but never does, and the result is an intelligent, soulful collection of songs that are easy to listen to but never easy to hear.
For fans of: Sara Barreilles, Jewel, Ingrid Michealson
Category: The Spiritual (whats this?)

hannah-atkins-falling
Hannah Atkins- Falling Hannah Atkins - Falling
Creative, quirky, and so intricate, you wont believe one person is making this music. An electro-pop gem with multi-layered vocal tracks, pounding beats, and a little bit of folk thrown in for good measure. A new face for a new genre: electro-folk.
For fans of: Imogean Heap, The Postal Service, Headphones
Category: The Light (whats this?)

josh-garrels-jacaranda
Josh Garrels- Jacaranda Josh Garrels - Jacaranda
Heartfelt, unique, and unlike anything out in the air right now. The pure songwriting ability in this young man is gorgeously displayed in his second full-length album, a hard look into the heart of those who seek God’s face. A truly blessed man offers up another amazing display of talent.
For fans of: Sublime, Dave Matthews Band, John Mayer
Category: The Spiritual (whats this?)

kaboose-excuse-me
Kaboose- Excuse Me Kaboose - Excuse Me
Funny, deep, and the perfect mixture of intelligent content and fun hip-hop. Excuse Me is a great collection of songs by an emcee who is not only committed to being light in the world for God, but being a truly thoughtful underground artist with songs that could rival the mainstream any day. Underground hip-hop with a lot of heart.
For fans of: Atmosphere, Dilated People, RedCloud
Category: The Message (whats this?)

la-dispute-somewhere-at-the-bottom-of-the-river-between-vega-and-altair
La Dispute- Somewhere at the Bottom of The River Between Vega & Altair La Dispute - Somewhere at the Bottom of the River Between Vega and Altair
Intense, chaotic, and what post-hardcore should have always been. La Dispute come out of nowhere with a classic album that combines their energy, mind, and passion on every note of every song. One of the best bands in heavy music’s latest masterpiece.
For fans of: At The Drive-In, mewithoutYou, These Arms Are Snakes
Category: The Light (whats this?)

lecrae-rebel
Lecrae- Rebel Lecrae - Rebel
Hard, truthful, and unrelenting. One of the biggest sounding hip-hop albums in recent history, Lecrae pulls no punches as spits truth in a world where he could easily stand up against MTV’s finest. The new prince of hip-hop has revealed himself.
For fans of: 50 Cent, Lil Wayne, The Ambassador
Category: The Message (whats this?)

mychildren-mybride-unbreakable
MyChildren MyBride- Unbreakable MyChildren MyBride - Unbreakable
Mosh-inducing, brutal, and a whole lotta fun. Behind the walls of well executed breaksdowns and crew vocals, we discover moshcore’s new superstars, a band who grab your attention form note one and will not let you go for a second. Mosh metal that cannot be duplicated.
For fans of: Acacia Strain, Darkest Hour, August Burns Red
Category: The Message (whats this?)

the-welcome-wagon-wlecome-to-the-welcome-wagon
The Welcome Wagon- Welcome To The Welcome Wagon The Welcome Wagon - Welcome to the Welcome Wagon
Simple, playful, and deeply meaningful. In the midst of over-produced praise and worship and pop CCM singles, this stripped down, delicate album sinks into the definition of “sacred music”, bringing some modern musical nuances to bridge the gap between the old and the new, and finds a new place of worship that sounds like what fresh air smells like. Truly lovely.
For fans of: Sufjan Stevens, Simon & Garfunkel, Cat Stevens
Category: The Spiritual (whats this?)

brooke-waggoner-heal-for-the-honey
Brooke Waggoner- Heal for the Honey Brooke Waggoner - Heal for the Honey
Near-flawless, deeply thoughtful, and evidence that of what a true artist can create when artistic freedom reigns. This is the type of album that makes you wonder what happened to the rest of the music industry, because Brooke Waggoner is an artist who deserves to heard, and heard by as many people as possible. Music that makes your day seem better, and makes you want to play and sing your heart out.
For fans of: Anathallo, Tori Amos, Sia
Category: The Light (whats this?)

thrice-the_alchemy_index_3and4
Thrice- Alchemy Index, Vol. 3 & 4: Air and Earth Thrice - The Alchemy Index, Vol. 3 & 4: Air & Earth
Skillful, engaging, and proof that Thrice might be the best rock band in music today. Two volumes of the Alchemy Index that display Thrice‘s power over the atmospheric rock and folk genres, containing some the band’s best music, but also a triumph for them as songwriters conquering new aspects of their music. Thrice‘s finest hour.
For fans of: The Myriad, Damien Rice, Radiohead
Category: The Message (whats this?)

wovenhand-ten-stones
Wovenhand- Ten Stones Wovenhand - Ten Stones
Dark, apocalyptic folk from the mind of man with one foot in the heavens, and one being used to step on the devil’s head. Ten Stones continues the reign of David Eugene Edwards (Wovenhand) as the warning voice to a generation in need of a Savior. There is nothing like this album.
For fans of: Nick Cave, 16 Horsepower, Johnny Cash
Category: The Message (whats this?)

deastro-keepers
Deastro- Keeper’s Deastro - Keepers
A sprawling tour de force of synth pop, progressive rock and electro folk Deastro’s keeper’s takes through a transcendent journey filled with wonder and awe.  The most awe inspiring aspect of Keeper’s is that it is a one man show from the writing, to performing, to producing and mixing.  Keeper’s is simply a beautiful listen from beginning to end.
For fans of: Postal Service, Crystal Castles, LCD Soundsystem
Category: The Light (whats this?)

underoath-lost-in-the-sound-of-seperation
Underoath- Lost in the Sound of SeparationUnderoath - Lost In the Sound of Separation
Diverse, epic, and evidence that Underoath are the kings of the screamo scene they helped create. This time around, the band went for the unknown, diving farther into experimental rock, electronica, and even beefing up the more aggressive side of their sound. True experiential brilliance.
For fans of: Fear Before The March of Flames, The Refused, Gallows
Category: The Message (whats this?)

Voices Of The Underground Pt.14

voicesoftheundergroundlogo-copy2

Several weeks ago One21 Music posed fifteen questions to a number of music artists in the Christian music scene, ranging from the light-hearted to the deeply spiritual. We received many responses, some very helpful, and some…. not so much. Some of the answers were short and sweet, some were extensive and eloquent. Many expressed frustrations with the current landscape of the music industry, while others were hopeful for a future of uncertainty. We heard from guys who had been performing for years, and bands that are just now starting to get their names heard. From indie rock to hip-hop, from hardcore to worship, the Christian music scene spoke back to us. Realize that these answers are by the people making the music that you are listening to, and these are un-edited and real. The opinions expressed don’t always reflect ours, but we aren’t perfect, right?

Need to catch up?

Read Pt.1: What Do You Love About Music?
Read Pt.2: What Are Some Of Your Favorite Albums/CDs?
Read Pt.3: What Is The Best Thing About Making Music?
Read Pt.4: What Is Your Opinion Of The Music Industry?
Read Pt.5: What Impact Has The Digital Age Of Music Had On The Industry?
Read Pt.6: Who Is Jesus Christ To You?
Read Pt.7: What Is Christian Music?
Read Pt.8: What Is Your Opinion On The Christian Music Industry?
Read Pt.9: Do You Think The Christian Music Scene Is Still Important?
Read Pt.10: Do You Think People Are More Receptive Or Resistant to Artists Of Faith Today?
Read Pt.11: Do You Consider Yourself A Christian Musician? In What Way Does It Affect Your Music?
Read Pt.12: What Is The Hardest Part About Being A Musician Today?
Read P.t13: What Responsibility (if any) Does An Artist Have To It’s Listener?

This week we begin our farewell to Voices Of The Underground.  Today’s issue seems a little like backtracking, but I thought it would be interesting to hear about what people thought was next for the music industry. In 1999, if I had told you that band websites were going to be free via a social networking site, bands could record themselves easily in their bedrooms, and that the concecpt of the MP3 album was going to be so well receieve that bands would begin to release music in only digital form, I bet you would have laughed at me. So, what’s next?

Where do you see the music industry going?

inhaleexhalejohninveryback John (guitarist for Solid State Records metal band Inhale/Exhale)
Inhale Exhale
All digital eventually I think. Bands gaining popularity on the internet first then touring and being a real band.

hylandjonJon (lead singer/guitarist for independent pop/rock band Hyland)
Hyland
That’s a tough call. We don’t know what the economy is going to bring. The word on the street is just tough it out. Ride out the storm and do what you can. The industry is going to be flipping sooner than later and it comes down to hard work and a keen business sense. The Christian industry especially is tightening its reigns, and you can expect to see more releases from already tried and true bands with set audiences. Sales are what’s needed to keep this thing afloat. Look for up and comers on indie labels and doing writing their own books on how to succeed, because there aren’t many majors looking to take chances right now.

the_welcome_wagon_-_0938-cVito(half of Asthamic Kitty indie/folk band The Welcome Wagon)
I hope the music industry goes more and more local. My favorite music is usually live music. I’d like to see networks of venues and labels and artists working together in the towns and cities where they live. I’d like to see more regional styles articulated and discovered and developed.

hill Brett Hill (Paradigm Nashville solo country artist)
Brett Hill
I think the playing field is becoming more equal to every artist. The good and bad. This should tell the Christian artists to get on the ball now, and not fool around. The main objective is to win the lost, before the enemy captures them for good. There is no time for playing around in the Christian industry. It is a spiritual war.

darknessbeforedawngabeGabe(guitarist for Bombworks Records metal band Darkness Before Dawn)
I think heavier and darker music is going to be more excepted and music is gonna rely more and more on internet.

sethinfrontendervence Seth (singer for independent hard rock band Endeverance)
Endeverance
Honestly, I have no idea. I’m just bracing for the amazing ride that it is going to be figuring that out…I’m personally waiting for music to totally implode on itself and come out of the ashes as something totally different and new…I just think that will be a great day…I just think we need more Bob Dylan’s and The Beatles’…And less Hannah Montana’s and Jonas Brother’s…

curtisblackhighvally Curtis (mandolist/singer for Centricity Records country band High Valley)
High Valley
I see the actual music being used more as a tool rather than a source of income, simply because music is very easy to get for free from things like Limewire. So I would guess that in the next few years artist will make more profit by selling advertising than selling their own product, with the exception of merchandise like t-shirts, picks, etc.

mahoganyjones Mahogany Jones(independent hip-hop artist)
Mahogany Jones
That soon the music industry will be more about merchandising than it will be about making and putting out music.

christopherthegoodnighthorizenChristopher(vocalist for Harvest Earth Records metal band The Goodnight Horizon)
Its hard telling. Every year it changes so much that its almost hard to predict. Right now the MTV era is over, and majority of people are onto all the bands in the underground. Gaining national support thanks to Myspace and a few other websites. Its no lie that everything is digital these days.

xcess Xcess(solo Darkside records hip-hop/industrial artist)
I see the industry still trying to find new ways to sell more music to the unassuming masses who prefer to go to arena concerts sitting half a football field away while they’re missing out on the house show down the street where a band is playing their hearts out in someones kitchen in the faces of the 20 kids packed into the tiny abode hoping the cops aren’t called.

heathstripsinirons Heath(bass player for Holdfast Records metal band In Irons)
In Irons
There is no way of knowing. I just hope to see more and more passionate bands come up in the near future. That’s what the industry needs.

daveleftpoorlybuitparachute Dave (half of Holdfast Records electro-house duo Poorly Built Parachute)
Poorly Built Parachute
I think the industry is going to rely on touring bands to survive. Kids dont buy CDs anymore, but they’ll spend $12 on a concert ticket and then $30 on merch.

brandonsayyouwill Brandon (bass player for independent pop/rock band Say You Will)
Down for a while more and then up up up up up. I think music will eventually all be free and they’ll use that as promotion to get people to shows and generate other sources of income for their artists. That’s essentially what is happening now. Some people still buy music on line though so they’re keeping the system barely a float. When they stop I think this will happen.

echocastbandwb8David (singer for independent nu-metal band Echocast)
Echocast
I see the music industry continuing to implode, but at the same time more and more independent artists will to rise from the ashes and continue to create the music they should be making instead of the corporate rock and roll that the major labels have forcefed the masses the past couple of decades…

deweyDewey Lybecker( independent solo singer/songwriter)
Dewey Lybecker
It’s hard to tell, with the way the economy is these days. Maybe we’ll all go back to making demo’s by pushing record on a boom box in our living room and drawing up home-made covers on brown paper bags…