Contemporary Christian Music is for sissies

So says the crazy anti-effeminate, now bearded, Steven Anderson (who believes real men wee standing up). He also hates Bieber.

Make sure you catch the last thirty seconds if you watch any of this at all…

Possibly a little bit too honest “worship” leading…

Ahh. This one has been doing the rounds – it’s been an open tab for far too long in my browser. So here you go.

I think the “I’ve sung this song for years…” line is perhaps the one I feel the most convicted by.

Via Jesus Needs New PR, but Tim also posted it in the interim, so he can have a link too.

Drumming for Jesus: Quantity over quality

They call him Dr. Mark. Good morning how are you. He’s Dr Mark. He’s interested in things…*

Don’t see this post as knocking drummers. Drums are great. But the key to drumming is knowing what, and when, not to play… seems like that might be a problem for this American preacher/drummer.

Here are some details about the kit, and Dr Mark Temperato. The man behind who bashes things with sticks.

I have designed and play The Largest DrumSET in the World with an arsenal of unusual sounds to Worship God and Wage War against the enemy
since 1978. God’s presence & power upon these sounds bring LIFE, healing,
deliverance and miracles. We get to kick the devil out of his place of
power…in our lives and in our world!

Here he is behind the skins…

Via Jesus Needs New PR

* Can I also say that this guy gets some points for reminding me of that They Might Be Giants classic.

Some cute/kitsch Christian music for your Friday night edification

There’s something irresistible about this video, maybe it’s the matching colours. Maybe it’s the bright house. Maybe it’s the incongruous dog. I don’t know. It’s certainly not the worst or weirdest Christian music on YouTube.

Nor is this, which apart from the ghostly severed heads is pretty cute.

YouTube Tuesday: The Rock’n’Roll bonanza

Jacob Aranza was right.

Rock and Roll is for Klingons (who Jesus hates).

Even the Catholics are onto you back masking rock stars – I’ve always wondered why “another one bites the dust” made me want to start smoking marijuana:

Crystal ball gazing is going to get you into trouble…

But, Aranza was wrong. There is no such thing as “Christian rock”… this comes in eight parts (I’ve started this at the relevant bit, the background is that this guy is a prophet of true Christianity).


I think this guy also thinks coffee and failing businesses are Satan’s work.


The solution is to be less enthusiastic in our singing.

How to write a bad worship song

You may have already seen this – but I thought it relevant as we’re currently discussing why you shouldn’t listen to rock’n’roll. If you want to provide something more wholesome you should follow this advice – how to write an awful worship song

One of my favourites:


Be Vague About Your Theology

Make sure to avoid any theology at all costs. Don’t talk about atonement, wrath, or any other biblical concepts. You want your song to be all about feeling. Don’t let the mind get in the way. Repeat after me: “Worship is a warm feeling, sort of like heartburn, only better.”

Two new contenders for world’s worst Christian music

Long time readers will remember the world’s worst “worship”… purely assessed from an aesthetic standpoint – I don’t know if this is acceptable to God. That’s up to him.

Here are two contenders to knock it off its throne (I have included the original as the third video in this post). In the Hokey Pokey one it’s worth persevering until 3.48. Apparently short term memory is not biblical… nor is Alzheimer’s.

If Nickleback was Creed

Some people can’t get enough of Christian music (or bands that are publicly Christian). Here’s a song highlighting the problem with the Christian music industry.

Religiofying video games

While Cracked is encouraging readers to “rationalise” games, the “Opposable Thumbs” blog is exploring the question of religious video games. There aren’t many – and none of them are good.

It’s odd really. There are Christian subsets of just about every other form of culture or entertainment. But the “Christian” video game landscape is a barren wasteland with the odd “Left Behind” game or a couple of terrible ports of popular games. I remember standing in Koorong one day as a kid playing the Noah’s Ark 3D game – a nasty rework of Wolfenstein where Noah ran around armed with a slingshot putting animals to sleep so he could bundle them onto the ark. Badness.

The Christian market is untapped – and we’ve seen (from the music industry) that we pay over the odds for bad quality just so that we can avoid engaging with the world around us.

Part of the problem, so far at least, is that the poor theology of Christians wanting to make games leads to bad games. Here’s a description of one from that article:

John E. Nelson’s Tribulation Knights seeks to put gamers in a stealth/adventure-based post-Apocalypse setting. Following a series of natural and economic disasters, a corrupt politician’s administration takes control of the globe and manages to convert most of the remaining population into a mindlessly-loyal legion. Some citizens, however, do not convert and find themselves without any rights in the new world society; accordingly, a group called the Knights rises up to protect these rebel citizens from the Gestapo-like Enforcers and gather enemy intel, all while staying hidden and avoiding armed conflict. “I wanted to create a game that had both an entertaining adventure but also hold true to the commandment of ‘Thou Shalt Not Kill.'” Nelson explained to Ars. “It was important to do so, and it is not easy. You can defend yourself by stunning Enforcers, or thugs for a very brief time. The goal is the mission, and to avoid direct contact with the enemy as much as possible.”

Thou shalt not kill? What about a game based on Judges. That would be awesome. Assassins Creed: The Ehud Edition. Here’s a potential blurb.

Ehud the left handed rallies support from his fledgling Israelite nation to pay a visit to the fat and oppressive king – Eglon. Ehud fights off animals and marauders on the way to deliver his tribute to the king. He straps his short sword to his leg in order to deliver a message from God to all those who oppose Israel – and he must find a way to hide the body of an obese monarch before evading the clutches of his pursuers.

Yeah. I’d play that. Or what about Mega Church Tycoon – decide what staging and lighting to install in your multipurpose auditorium in order to lure the heathens from your chosen demographic.

Or “The Sins” your chance to sanctify a neighbourhood of sinful sims through the power of hospitality.

There is a Christian version of Guitar Hero out there somewhere – but what about HymnStar – the chance to belt out your favourite hymns, songs of praise, and Christian power ballads – you could have a special “Christmas Carols” edition slated for a December release.

Join me in producing these and we’ll be rich.

An open letter to annoying people who have music autoplaying on their websites

Dear stupid,

Please do not have music autoplaying on your website. Actually, please do not have any sound autoplaying on your website. You might think it’s totally cool and awesome. You might assume that everybody wants to hear what you can do with a little bit of code.

You are wrong.

People these days browse using tabs. They might have 30 tabs open with things they are considering blogging. They might have had the sound off and your tab opened for days.

They might be about to listen to some new awesome tunes that their CEO told them about while he’s standing there listening to it.

If these things are true they don’t want “Our God is an Awesome God” blaring out in all it’s bad midi glory from a tab they can’t find and quickly terminate.

And their CEO might think that they’re some weird “Jesus Freak” who listens to bad music on the company’s dollar – when in fact they are a normal Jesus Freak who blogs about stuff like this on the company’s dollar.

Luckily, my CEO knows that I’m leaving to go to Bible College – so he already thinks I’m a weird Jesus Freak – his comment about my “choice” of music was “you can keep that”…

This is the band I was checking out. I shut a lot of tabs – but I believe this was the cultprit(sic).

I also hate MySpace.

Regards,

Nathan

Recanting some more

Mumford and Sons caused me to recant my long held position on folk music – and it turns out they’ve undone another little piece of music snobbery.

Despite the liberal application of the “f” word in their current single – which probably turns off heaps of Christian listeners – it appears that the guys in the band are in fact Christians. And since their songs spend a fair bit of time dealing with Christian stuff I could begrudgingly define their music as Christian music. And we all know how I feel about that.

I looked it up online because I was pretty convinced based on some of the lyrics that the album Sigh No More is at the very least a musical documentation of someone’s dalliance with God, and Christian belief.

I’m intrigued by some of the lyrics from this album. Clearly they’re about a man struggling between the flesh and the spiritual. Here’s a post with a bit of an analysis of the lyrics, and here’s one from someone who couldn’t take all the Jesus talk

Here are some of their lyrics.

Dust Bowl Dance
there will come a time when I will look in your eye
You will pray to the god that you’ve always denied
I’ll go out back and I’ll get my gun
I’ll say you haven’t met me, I am the only son.

White Blank pages
Can you lie next to her
And give her your heart, your heart
As well as your body
And can you lie next to her
And confess your love, your love
As well as your folly
And can you kneel before the king
And say I’m clean, I’m clean

Awake My Soul
In these bodies we will live, in these bodies we will die
Where you invest your love, you invest your life

Awake my soul, awake my soul
Awake my soul
You were made to meet your maker

Roll Away Your Stone
You told me that I would find a hole
Within the fragile substance of my soul
And I have filled this void with things unreal
And all the while my character it steals

And here are some songs for your listening pleasure.

What about me?

Here’s a nice little video expressing the problem with some Christian music… It’s an old point, but a good point.

Via Faith and Theology

Love languages

You know how there are five Greek words for love? This is a good thing. Because it allows for clarity when you’re using a language of love.

We’ve got one word in English, and it’s contextually defined. I love God. But I don’t love God like I love my wife. And I don’t love my wife like I love my lunch. This is part of the reason that Christian music is so culturally odd.

Am I the only one who gets uncomfortable when we use the analogy of a human relationship when talking about meeting God. I know the Bible does it. But it just sounds odd when people tell the media they hope this new Jesus advertising campaign is like the preliminary to a first date with Jesus.

But Dominic Steele, director of Christians in the Media, hopes it will have real resonance.

”They’re a first invitation to a conversation about having a date with God or potentially starting a relationship.”

I understand the rationale – it just makes me cringe a little. You don’t “date” your father – unless you’re Mark Driscoll’s kids. My response to this language is the same as my response to “daddy date”. Maybe this is a case of unhelpful definition creep when it comes to the word date. It seems to come with a whole lot of eros baggage when it may instead be either storge, agape or philia type love.

Toby’s Mac

Macs are cool. I don’t have mine yet, but already I know this.

I’m playing with Robyn’s now. And I like it. But this belief has been reinforced by a day watching the West Wing (starting from Series 1) – one of the perks of sickness.

I had never noticed this before. But Sam and Toby both write their speeches on Macs. How cool is that.

For all of those people thinking that this title was a reference to Christian music – you were wrong.

Facing the music

Another post, another YouTube video…

As I mentioned earlier, Matt Redman, who is responsible for a few cringe worthy "worship" songs, is undergoing a bit of a Copernican revolution. He has realised that some of the soppiness in his songs can be a little bit over the top, and not quite Biblical.

I’m glad he uses the framework he does to assess his songwriting (and that of others).

"In the Bible you don’t see a lot of people coming up to Jesus and saying you’re beautiful"