The Browders have been rising in the ranks of Southern Gospel’s favorite family groups. The group’s 2009 album, The Message, sparked seven top ten hits with three of those going to the #1 position (“Land Of No Goodbyes”, “Message Of The Cross” and “Praise You In This Valley”).
2013 finds the Browders with a new album, Time Machine. This is the first album to be released by Daywind Records. Will they have as much success with Time Machine as with The Message?
Song list: (1) “Lift Up His Name” – Matthew Browder (2) “He Is Alive” – Matthew Browder (3) “Time Machine” – Matthew Browder (4) “Listening For The Shout” – Tommy Browder, Matthew Browder (5) “He Took The Nails” – Matthew Browder, Mike Upright (6) “Whatever You’re Going Through” – David Browder (7) “God Knows What’s Best” – Tommy Browder (8) “Pick Me Up” – David Browder, Matthew Browder (9) “The Reason” – Sonya Browder (10) “New Song” – Matthew Browder (11) “Waiting For You To Get Home” – Matthew Browder, Phil Cross
- The Browders give everyone something to enjoy, mixing modern, progressive arrangements with tried-and-true, straight ahead traditional southern gospel, and they do it all without sounding forced.
- The phrasing on “He Is Alive” actually reminded me of the original Hinsons and their ability to bend and slide into words. A great choice for the first single, as well, for the old-school fans.
- Another Hinsons comparison is that all of the songs were written or co-written by members of the group (Matthew Browder alone has writer or co-writer credits on 8 of the 11 songs). This alone shows the level of creative talent in the group.
- “Whatever You’re Going Through” uses some very creative vocal stacking and recording tricks to give it some modern flairs that I really enjoyed
- The title track is a laid-back, mellow tune about living life to the fullest. It doesn’t have a blatantly “gospel” message behind it, but that could actually work in the group’s favor for crossover potential.
- The Browders traditional country-style hearkens me back to the early days of the Crabb Family. Throw in a little Singing Cookes and mix it with some Jeff & Sheri Easter sounds and you’ve got the music of the Browders.
- After three #1 hits from their previous album, I believe the Browders have at least one #1 song on Time Machine. The current radio single, “He Is Alive”, has the potential to reach the top of the charts. This song is traditional country to the core and is another telling of Christ’s victorious resurrection.
- When you think you’ve figured out the Browders sound/style, they throw in a pop infused tune, “Whatever You’re Going Through”. The song features (and was written by) family member David Browder. I found myself repeating this song several times before moving on to the rest of the album. It is so different from anything else on the album.
- Time Machine has nice book ends with a strong album opener and closing track. Matthew is featured on both songs, “Lift Up His Name” and “Waiting For You To Get Home”. Both songs would make great radio single choices.
- I enjoy listening to groups who know who they are (musically) and don’t try to be something different to be considered more mainstream for Southern Gospel listening audiences.
- “Pick Me Up” makes the mistake of talking about current technology (specifically, iPods and ringtones). It may work right now, but within a few years, may be totally dated and could even draw chuckles from audiences.
- I know I complain about it quite a bit, but some of the vocals have been tuned a bit too strongly, making them sound a bit overly-digital in spots.
- Sonya Browder was featured on the group’s first #1 song, “Message Of The Cross”. The two features Sonya has on Time Machine (“He Took The Nails” and “The Reason”) doesn’t quite match the caliber of her performance of “Message Of The Cross”. “He Took The Nails” was the stronger of the two.
- The ‘hard driving’ country sounds of “Pick Me Up”, while fun, didn’t match the strength of the others songs on the album.
- YES – Unlike Steve, Time Machine is my first exposure to the Browders, and I am very impressed with what I have heard. Despite a few flaws, I found myself enjoying this album very much, and believe it is one of the stronger projects I’ve heard as a whole this year.
- NO – I really went back and forth on this one. Time Machine is an enjoyable listen (especially if you’re a fan of the groups I mentioned above). I don’t think it is as strong as their previous effort, The Message and for that reason I have to give it a slight no.