Josh Garrels – ‘Love & War & The Sea In Between’ Review
Heaven shed a little bit of its glory on some log cabin in the mountains, and alas, Josh Garrels’ “Love & War & the Sea in Between” was born. It’s somewhere in between sylvan and cinematic. It’s prophetic, distinguishable, and exceedingly natural.
Josh Garrels and his host of gloriously diverse musicians play anything from bluegrass to alternative. His work isn’t labeled as worship music, but it has an obvious spiritual undertone. He seems to be singing directly to God about how his love affects his life, fulfilling his personal worship, as opposed to the regimented praises that we’re all too familiar with.
The first time I heard of Josh Garrels was on an internet playlist, when his song, “Farther Long”, came on. It must’ve only taken me 20 seconds before I switched tabs to find out who was playing. The honesty in his deeply toned voice was captivating, and a few of the lyrics in the rap-like verses of the songs were powerful enough to give me chills. Sure enough, after downloading the full album, I found out that most all of his songs had a similar effect on me. The opener of the album,”White Owl”, has grown to be my favorite among his songs. In it, all of the musical aspects mesh in a subtle harmony: the small steady beat, the multiple guitars, Josh’s use of falsetto, and what sound like flutes and strings. This is different, finally.
“Love & War & the Sea in Between” doesn’t conform to standard album layouts either, five out of the 18 songs on the album are strictly instrumental. This sort of format commands so much respect to an artist. It shows true musicianship, in the ability to say, “You know, this jam is good and complete like it is, lets not screw with it.” Keep your synthesizers and auto-tune, this is music.
Overall Rating: 9/10