Sometimes, unplugging is all it takes. After an unsuccessful struggle with songwriting, Jon Thurlow felt a push inside of him to empty out his media-saturated life. So he did, cutting off the continual video and music stream that had been feeding constant input into his already over-full mind. It was time to shut it all off and empty out, and once he got rid of the noise, God flipped the switch and the songs began to flow. Several years later, the songs are still flowing, and Stand in Awe is the result.
Thurlow’s “everyman” voice provides the foundation for a heavy prayer/worship focus birthed out of his time at the International House of Prayer. After some nods to current and more recent contemporary styles—such as the Coldplay-esque feel of “Have The Glory”—Stand in Awe settles into a decidedly old-school feel, and this is where Thurlow is at his best. “I Love Your Ministry” echoes Tommy Walker in his heyday, and several other songs reflect time-honored traditions in the worship genre.
More: The jazz-tinged beauty and piano improv of “Simple Conversation” and “Fairer Than the Sons of Men” are standouts on the musical side. Lyrically, God is solidly in the forefront.
Less: The emphasis here is on the message, so not too heavy on the big production values, and there’s more than a minor nod to the past. While many will find the lack of Auto-Tune and other heavy processing refreshing, the direction here may lean too far towards the “classic” for some listeners.