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Different Kind of Free

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ZOEgirl 11//2003

Review

For its third effort, ZOEgirl moves away from the dance-pop of Life and its accompanying remix album to access a layered, sculpted rock sound that falls somewhere between Avril Lavigne and Sugar Ray. But while their delivery system is strikingly similar to the mainstream ("Love Me for Me" could be Pink's "Don't Let Me Get Me" with just a little R-rated tweaking), ZOEgirl is one of the only pop groups that can give mad props to Jesus and really mean it. Alisa Girard, Chrissy Conway, and Kristin Swinford use their three-part harmonious powers for good -- they include biblical passages with each song, and focus their lyrics on the complicated life issues that teenage girls face every day. "Feel Alright" decries the fakery of celebrity and glamour images over a groovy update of the Primitives, while the single "You Get Me" is a conventional devotion rewritten with roaring guitars and Pro Tools. It's a good plan, hijacking the soundtrack to Lavigne's pouting and precocious teenage rebellion to ferry messages of ministry and positivity. And Tedd Tjornholm's production gets it right at Different Kind of Free's every turn. Even more serious material like "She" is able to balance its message with an electro-acoustic groove that recalls Dido or the more pop-oriented work of the Corrs. Lyrics like "Lord, you get me" and "There's a miracle waiting/For all who speak His name" are certain to make some secular types shy away from ZOEgirl. But the trio and its talented collaborators deserve credit for embracing an up-to-the-second sound without hiding their Christian values under a bushel basket. It's CCM's burden that it either dilutes the music in favor of message, or hides its faith while feeling around for stardom. ZOEgirl's Different Kind of Free is that unique Christian music album that happily hops on the pop bandwagon, but doesn't just sit on its Bible when it gets there. ~ Johnny Loftus
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  1. # Track Artist Length
  2. 1 Beautiful Name ZOEgirl 4:46
  3. 2 You Get Me ZOEgirl 3:48
  4. 3 Inside Out ZOEgirl 3:15
  5. 4 Love Me for Me ZOEgirl 3:29
  6. 5 Unbroken ZOEgirl 4:57
  7. 6 Wait ZOEgirl 4:33
  8. 7 Feel Alright ZOEgirl 3:8
  9. 8 She ZOEgirl 4:49
  10. 9 Contagious ZOEgirl 5:35
  11. 10 Different Kind of Free ZOEgirl 4:31
  12. 11 Life to Me ZOEgirl 5:46

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