Mat Kearney: Crazytalk

Kearney’s style of hip-hop inflected pop has had a great few years, seeing respect in the mainstream, on a dozen television episodes, and on Christian radio. His latest release seems poised to continue his string of success. He can do the sing/talk thing like Post Malone or Mike Posner, but without the autotune. He can croon like Charlie Puth and doesn’t skimp on the music; Over the course of thirteen tracks, Kearney serves up Shawn Mendes-style guitar on one track, programmed synths on the next, but always tastefully arranged and hooky. The chipmunk vocal effect from Major Lazer’s big hit “Lean On” appears more than once. Lyrics focus on love for his wife Annie, though “Face to Face” is as gospel-centered (and full of water metaphors) as a Hillsong track: “I feel Your thunder, pouring like rain down on the mountains of all my mistakes, rolling like rivers, running with grace, into the ocean of your embrace, Your hand on my side, bleeding away.” (from “Face to Face”)

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