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PostPosted: Wed Sep 22, 2004 12:07 am 
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Read the entire story: http://www.musicdish.com/mag/?id=9701

For The Swift - the critically-acclaimed pop/rock foursome that brought the words "original" and "piano-driven" back to Christian music - the amazing race of the past two years has certainly made a definitive point. And it is this: Whatever happened yesterday is history. Today is where everything begins, so open your eyes and live it 100%. This is the point of Today, The Swift's infectiously profound, passion-driven second release on Flicker Records, a sonic '"kick in the pants" that you'll remember long after the CD stops spinning.

Formed in North Carolina in 1998, The Swift began as a youth camp/retreat "come and play when you can" worship band fronted by piano-man Britt Edwards. Soon Britt was joined by guitarist Chris Byers, drummer and college pal Trae Drose, and bassist/vocalist Mike Simons. And the more they played together, the more they were asked to play, the more they needed original music, the more time they spent on the road. And well, you get the picture.

By early 2002,The Swift had signed with Flicker Records, and later that year released their self-titled debut, which garnered a Top 10 CHR single "Under the Sun" and the AC single "More Than Gold." A DVD of top-notch music videos soon followed, as The Swift picked up touring dates with the meteoric band MercyMe. All the while, this ministry-focused band continued playing and leading worship for more than 40 weekends each year for student events like Planet Wisdom and this summer's "Life 2004: The Journey" in Phoenix, Arizona, where The Swift will play nightly before an estimated crowd of 10,000.

The professional sprint of the last few years has found The Swift digging deeper, musically and lyrically, for more accessible songs that will speak to a broader audience. The hearty result is Today, the band's most compelling, most well-rounded project to date.

And now, with formidable guitarist Justin Sharbono taking over for the exiting Chris Byers, The Swift is even more intent on making an impact.

Produced by Jason Burkum and Nathan Dantzler (Audio Adrenaline, Tree63), Today dawns with much of the same carefree, lighthearted fun audiences have come to expect from The Swift. And yet, there's an overarching maturity that echoes in the 11 songs here, a spiritual insight that comes with weathering a few rough spots in the road.

Where they are, lyrically and musically, is as original and fresh as anything on the airwaves. Sure, The Swift is often compared to the likes of Maroon5, Ben Folds Five, Billy Joel or some fusion thereof, but Today proves this band is capable of more than strong hooks and memorable piano-driven melodies.

From the beautiful orchestrated strains that lead into the aggressive worship anthem "You Burn" to the '70s horn-laden groove of "Today" to the infectious, raucous whimsy of "Trumpet Song," The Swift expands beyond the expected to create a sonic wave as wide as the horizon. And riding on that wave is the foundational truth of which they sing.

Most of all, the band agrees, the songs of Today speak of real life ups and downs and how God's unfathomable love washes through all of our days, growing our faith and making each day a brand new starting point for all that is to come. "Today is the day," Simons adds, enthusiastically. "It's always the day. To start fresh, to dedicate yourself to God, to grow, to seek, to discover the bigger picture. To live every moment."


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More on The Swift: http://www.buzzplant.com/theswift/


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