I was asked if I disliked the band "Starfield". My personal opinion is that people like them a lot because they're Canadian and outside of that, they're just an average band. A friend of mine (who I trust in terms of musical taste) bought the CD after much hype was made about them, and told me the CD was "Okay, nothing special." If I were to spend $15-20 on every CD by all the average bands out there, I'd run out of money in a hurry.
That brings us to my review of Building 429's latest offering: "Rise".
When I bought their first CD "Space Between Us", I had almost no expectations. I had heard "Glory Defined" on the radio a billion times and outside of that I didn't think they would be much better than that. However, that CD surprised me because it was really good. I guess you could say I had mixed expectations of the second CD "Rise". On the one hand you expect good stuff because of the first, but on the other, I am always weary of sophomore CDs.
I think the first thing I noticed about Rise was that the musicians have matured a lot. They sound more like a hard rock band whereas in the first album, half the album was rock, and the other was a bit of alternative/pop. It impresses me that they would go and work harder on their craft after just picking up the "New Artist of the Year" Dove Award. Often I've found that bands release a sub-par CD following great success in the previous and just ride their past fame — or they're just one-hit wonders. For example, David Crowder's "Collision", MercyMe's "Coming Up To Breathe" (I'll get to this disappointment in a couple weeks), Coldplay's "X&Y", Alanis Morissette's "Everything after Jagged Little Pill". But in this case Building 429's second offering is even better than the first.
I haven't listened to anything other than "Rise" over the past few days in my iPod. The songs are brighter and fuller, and the lyrics are challenging and bold. I highly recommend this CD if you're into Christian rock.