I was introduced to Mitch McVicker in August of 1997. All I can remember is how impressed I was with him, his whole attitude and his incredible voice. He had joined Rich Mullins on a tour of sorts along with ‘This Train’ and since I never pass up an opportunity to see Rich Mullins, I jumped at the tickets when they came out.
Of course, Mitch would be in the accident a month later that claimed the life of Rich Mullins and nearly himself as well. Little did I know that Mitch himself had just finished up his own album with Rich serving as producer and co-writer on a few songs.
finally debuted but was surprisingly hard to find. Mitch had signed
with an indie label, which of course hampered it's distribution.
When I got around to picking up this album I decided to kick myself for not getting it earlier. Never have I seen a more underrated artist. There is a strong folk-pop influence and he sings with such emotion and passion.
From the get-go, Mitch provides an upbeat yet inspirational feel to his album. The opening song “Here and Now” talks of seizing the moment and finding God's love “Right here” and “Right now”. It leads into “Take Hold of Me” which showcases one of Mitch’s many musical talents, the harmonica. The song speaks of a spiritual valley in his walk. It's very honest and lets you look right into his heart. The chorus mentions that God is the only thing he wants to see, so as to keep his focus in the right place and not be tempted.
“Gospel Rain”, the next cut, is one of my faves and the first one on the album co-written with Rich Mullins. As with Mullins’ songs, sometimes the meaning of the verses are hard to understand but I believe this song speaks of when the world is falling down around you and times seem bad, God will send out his love in a “gospel rain” to comfort you. In the middle of the album is the concert fave “Lemonade” song, which would be an instant hit if it were to ever hit the CCM airwaves. This song even features not only a washboard but also a veldhuis can. It's a song that speaks of hypocrisy in Christianity and about one man who knows that one day he'll be “sittin up in heaven on an easy chair, sipping lemonade; love lives there” It's upbeat and has some great harmonica work.
Mullins includes the sound of the hammered dulcimer though only in one
song, “Freedom”. Mich plays the acoustic guitar,
which is his main instrument. Perhaps my fave song on the album is the
closing track titled “New Mexico”, which was also co-wrote with Rich.
It explains how he has “come to this desert, just to find my way to forever”.
It's a great song and a fantastic finish to an overall stellar album.
Review by Rick Moore
email @ firstname.lastname@example.org
obtained from mitch for sound/picture files used