CD Rated: Arkin Terrell (One Step Closer)

Rating: 4 Stars

Label: I Witness Records
Producers: Billy Davis and Chip Davis

Song Titles: “Strength To Surrender,” “If This Is All There Is,” “Prints Of Peace,” “Lets Stand For Love,” “Clean Slate,” “Did You Hear Me Say Goodbye,” “One Step Closer,” “If It Wasn’t For You,” “Wise To You,” “This Is Forever,” “You Did Not Leave Me Behind,” and “The Race”

Nutshell Analysis: Arkin Terrell is most effective on Country flavored tracks, whether it be a ballad like “If This Is All There Is” or a mid-tempo Bayou blues inspired track like “Clean Slate.” The latter is in the same vein as Steven Curtis Chapman’s “I Will Not Go Quietly,” “The Walk” and “Lord Of The Dance.” “Prints Of Peace” uses a clever metaphor that avoids the tackiness of “look-how-clever-I-was-to-put-it-this-way” metaphors about the cross. (See: Cross, Phil – “The Key” for contrast.) The least effective tracks, including the title song, sound like throwbacks to late 1980s pop music. This CD is somewhat schizophrenic in style, but shows potential for Terrell to either lean toward Christian pop or a more traditional audience. It will depend on which doors open widest to him in the coming months. A song like “This Is Forever,” written by Chip Davis, Billy Dean, and Doug Graham, could launch him toward mainstream Country radio. The CD closes with a trip to funky town titled “The Race.” The artwork isn’t all that compelling and does very little to convey what style(s) of music to expect. Terrell looks a bit too much like a nerd trying hard to fit in with the cool kids, but don’t let that stop you from checking out his music. There’s definitely some material here worthy of consideration if you’re into Christian Country and/or Christian pop music.

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Category CD Reviews

David Bruce Murray

David Bruce Murray is a church music director in Ellenboro, NC. He is the author of Murray's Encyclopedia Of Southern Gospel Music and the owner of both and David plays piano for Southern Sounds Quartet and the Foothills Community Choir.

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1 Comment

  1. Reply June 01, 14:38 #1 John Meadors

    This Cd is simply awesome! I own it, I have friends that own it. I agree with the song sentiments on the album. There are a number of different directions Terrell could take his career. However it is his heart for ministry which will maintain and keep him within the Christian Music community. As for the artwork comments I disagree. I thought it was a rather clever attempt because the Albums title is “One Step Closer” and there is an “Empty Auditorium” thus kind of saying to the listener/buyer hey I’m going out and I’m going to take this one step at a time and let God show me my audience. Nerd? I think not thats a stretch. Great album, Great Production and Great Message I think so. Congratulations to Terrell and his support team on a job well done.

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