Travis William Tuer aka TUER has been making music for most of his life. At the ripe age of seven he was playing piano and by eleven he was playing the trombone. When he grew up he became headband director and in 2012 created Jazz Trombone Workshop.
Tuer also happened to release an album called Journey Back. He wanted to create a Christian album that is far different from what is normally heard. After spending some time with Journey Back I’d say he definitely succeeded when it comes to the music and was less successful when it comes to the lyrics.
Let’s start wit the lyrics. Simply stated if you aren’t into the whole Jesus thing and a devout Christian then it is harder to get behind what is being sung about. Almost all of the lyrics deal with either Jesus’s love for you, forgiveness, how he died on the cross for you, guidance, etc. Topically the album treads on the same subject most Christian albums deal with.
The music is at its best when it's upbeat and lively. Take for instance the opener “You Are” which is funky, fun and light. It’s a catchy tune and the horns are integral to the song. The horns end up being a very important part to many of these songs. The Bossa Nova and Satana vibe on “Come Unto Me” also works quite well. It’s certainly isn’t a style you associate with Christian albums.
The slower more melancholy songs don’t work as well and can come off as saccharine. “Lamentation” is one of the shorter songs on the album but it feels like it lasts a long time. The horns are a big plus on this song. “Jesus Loves” has some more fantastic horns and actually has a bit of a jam band feel.
Journey Back will resonate with most people who already have faith in Jesus and are sick of the typical grandiose rock schtick. If you happen to fall into this camp this album is a no brainer.
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