ON THIS MOUNTAIN is an album of original gospel songs that represent a new direction for Christian pop music.
Stylistically, the music is all over the map — from “folk,” to “calypso,” to “country-rock,” to “Motown,” to you-name-it. Every work included is original, with words and music by journalist/novelist/Christian entertainer Bill Kassel (except “For All the Saints,” an Anglican classic that has earned a secure place in Protestant and Catholic hymnals alike, and is rendered here in an original adaptation).
Lyrically, the songs tend not to take themselves too seriously, though there are some more reflective pieces to leaven the loaf. They deal with the experience of faith, with the human condition, with our relationships to God and to each other, with the things we seek, and the things we deny. In short, with life, the way it is.
Indeed, Bill Kassel’s lyric writing has a colloquial ease that fits neatly with his bouncy tunes, and bridges the gap between religious ideas and the language of casual conversation. As talk show host Al Kresta has put it: “Imagine John Michael Talbot writing for Tin Pan Alley (or perhaps the Grand Ole Opry), and you have some idea of these songs.”
The songs of ON THIS MOUNTAIN are timely, relevant, praise-filled, readily singable — often quite humorous — and evangelistic without being “preachy.” And they’re all presented with a spontaneity and party-like exuberance made possible by a talented “company” of Christian musicians — guided by the fresh artistic vision of producer Dan Adam.