Prime Cuts: Grace, Your Love, Brighter Days
Overall Grade: 4.5/5
Despite having lost his sight at a young age, Blessing Offor can see into the needs of the soul better than most singer-songwriters. Addressing issues such as lostness, depression, loneliness, and friendlessness, the songs on Offor's debut album help us see how Christ and his Gospel are the panacea. Bringing in a deeper perspective to these perennial ills, Offor's songs have already become darlings among many in and outside the Christian community. Already a recipient of GMA Dove Awards' new artist of the year, Offor's debut album "My Tribe," with 16 tracks, is bound to expand his fan base.
Refusing to hide the warts of life, the lyrics of album opener "Brighter Days" are striking: If your screams don't make a sound ... If your walls are crashing down ... If your heart just cries too loud all the time ... I know there's gonna be some brighter days ... I swear that love will find you in your pain. This love that Offor speaks about gets further exposition in the ballad "Your Love." If there's a song that could work as a congregation worship piece, it's "Your love." Combining an irresistibly catchy melody and poetically crafted lyrics ("Stars will fall from the sky someday/When I'm lost, I'll call Your name to"), "Your Love" towers over the many cliché-ridden worship ditties out there.
For those who have scarred by life and its criticism, take a moment and soak in the words of the piano ballad "Grace." Faith in the sovereignty of God has never sounded more palatable than on the reverb-sounding "Believe." More soul-nourishing moments come with Lauryn Hill-esque neo-Gospel hip hop-driven title cut "My Tribe." In this world of fair-weather friends, "My Tribe" goes deep to discover what Christ's idea of community really means. Like a tender-hearted pastor, Offor speaks directly to the downtrodden in the heaven-centered "Won't Be Long Now."
Unlike many of his peers, Offor keeps his musical palette diverse. From the crunchy pop sounds of "Looking for God" to the Motown-infused soul of "Last for Now" to the country-rollicking "Rollin'," there is not a dull moment on the record. In short, "My Tribe" has a way of ministering to people of all tribes.