At least twice a year a prominent Christian rock outfit plays Missoula—typically at SHEC or the Fairgrounds—and we’re sent a CD for review. The results usually aren’t pretty. In fact, I think Comrade Calendar is still getting hate mail for his baptismal joke dealing with a picture of Jars of Clay in a bathtub.
But Christian rock is about new beginnings—or at least episodic anthems literally praying for new beginnings. And, perhaps spurred by another late-night viewing of that Time-Life commercial for the strangely contagious Open the Eyes of Your Heart album, we’re ready to give the genre another honest go.
Newsboys are among the biggest gospel rockers in the biz, which helps explain the arrival of their second Best Of album since 2000. Their music—especially catchy pop candy like “Stay Strong” and “He Reigns”—combines something of a New Order/Depeche Mode feel with (maybe) Interpol, but without being a blatant carbon copy of their mainstream contemporaries. It’s still not our cup of holy water, but for the originality alone, props to Newsboys. You may just make a God rock believer out of us after all. (Skylar Browning)
Newsboys play the Adams Center Wednesday, April 16, at 7 PM. $42 VIP/$34 floor/$26 advance general admission/$30 day of show.