Personnel: Nichole Nordeman (vocals); Jay Joyce (guitar, keyboards, bass guitar, drum machine, background vocals); The Nashville String Machine (strings); Giles Reaves (synthesizer, drums, percussion, programming); Byron House (double bass).
On 2005's BRAVE, Christian music star Nichole Nordeman creates a state-of-the-art contemporary pop sound that perfectly frames her nuance-filled voice. Often compared to Sarah McLachlan, Nordeman mines a similar mix of passionate singing, smooth production, and frank, poetic lyrics. "What If," which combines modern R&B and Cranberries-like melancholy rock, challenges a skeptical friend to explore the possibility that God may have a place in his life. "Lay It Down" offers comfort to lost souls, and benefits from a sparsely funky arrangement equal parts Everything But the Girl and Tears for Fears. "Crimson" is a Christian torch song that uses jazzy cello and synths to candidly explore the concept of original sin. A deeply felt expression of faith that doesn't shy away from the hard questions, BRAVE is a serious artistic statement that lives up to its title.