If the truth is something you are seeking, it has arrived in the form of Carrie Theobald, Mandee Radford, and Cristi Johnson, the three young women who comprise Rocketown Records’ new prodigy, Alathea. Alathea is Greek for the word truth and that is exactly what this trio wishes to represent.
The truth they portray through the humble beginnings they experienced, hard work, and dedication to their Savior is as honest and straightforward as they are personally. They are the embodiment of the average young person, yet with verve that few today possess.
The trio met while attending Milligan College in the East Tennessee foothills, where they volunteered for Young Life, a relational ministry for high school students who wouldn't normally attend church. These ladies wanted to show the value in God's love and earn the right to be heard, and music was the medium in which they chose to do so.
They started utilizing their abilities in 1999 on the way to a retreat in Florida. A common bond was formed through that experience which still to this day influences their focus on the realness of God's love and their desire to be truthful in expressing it.
The trio has kept its sound veritable, trying to maintain that trueness. They recorded their debut album, What Light Is All About, in the log cabin they share in the foothills of East Tennessee. From there, they take you on a journey through music, capturing a mixture of bluegrass and folk, which they have merged into a blend of authentic Appalachian music.
Alathea's lyrics describe the depth of one’s search for the pureness of God's love and the struggles that are faced in an uncertain world. Take for example, songs like “Indian Creek” that illustrate the desire to be found by God, or “Faithful One”, a song that articulates the struggles we face with faith. Other offerings not to be missed are the hymn with a modern day twist, “O Love That Will Not Let Me Go”, and “Runaway Heart”, which conveys the description of a heart that has lost its way.
As candid as these three are with their struggles and their fears, they place you within their propinquity so as you listen you feel a part of the enveloping presence of God, which is truly what the light is all about.
By: Kris Brown Gabbitas
There are few bands in this life that will really impact you right from the beginning. Fringe is such a band. With a sound closely related to Dave Matthews Band, and strangely U2. Fringe has melded those sounds together to develop a sound that has created it's own genre. A sound that rocks, but still pricks your soul. They are unique in themselves, but still familiar enough to make you feel at home listening to them. Fringe consists of Jason Clark: Vocals, Acoustic/Electric Guitar, Eric Perry: Drums, Jeremy Cole: Bass, and Shawn Harnish: Electric Guitar. Cole and Perry seem to read each other perfectly to put together a beat as bizarre as Keep Me, and still make it plausible. At first you might be thrown off a bit, by how melodically chaotic it is, only to be drawn back to it again later. The main attraction of this album is the depth to their lyrics, they speak honestly of trails, heartache, and struggling to be the "Perfect Christian". Few bands expose themselves so willingly. You have to admire anyone who has the gumption to do so. They mix a blend of tact, and bluntness, to tell you exactly how they feel. Clarks vocals have a richness, a fullness, surrounded with a harmony that borders on symphonic, they pull you deeper into their sound. With masterful lyrics like Mercy, that bespeak of the hardship people feel when trying to place to much value in mankind and lose sight of God's purpose for their lives. Take Away is a reminder to place all your burdens at his feet, and Head Over Heels is a tribute to romantic love. With each song you are compelled to listen once, than once again. The honesty that Fringe is open to expressing is luminous, and thought provoking at the same time. They lure you deeper only to crash you to the surface with the ease of their lyrical capabilities. Fly, and One More Day To There, sound like they could be off Dave Matthews latest album, but yet the quality is far greater than that. You can only compare to a degree before realizing there is nothing in which to truly compare. Fringe has mastered the art of perfecting their own musical ability, to pull you closer to discover for yourself what it is that makes you want to listen to them. This band truly seems willing to make the Sacrifice it takes to make it.
By: Kris Brown Gabbitas