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Faith, Hope & Love

Artist: Je’kob

Released: Dec 2013

Rating: 4/5

The rapper, singer, and record producer Je’kob (born Je’kob Washington, 1981) released his fourth album Faith, Hope & Love in December 2013. Je’kob has not received the amount of publicity and popularity he deserves and this album demonstrates this to the highest degree.

This point is apparent on listening to the first track and first line of the song called ‘Faith’. He quotes Philippians 4:13 in saying “I can do all things, through Christ who strengthens me”, but he does so in a very contemporary and popular manner which is relatable to not only Christians but people who may not be Christians due to its popular sound. Je’kob gets points immediately for composing a song which is religious, but also sounds so contemporary that you could imagine it being played on any radio show. The song is talking to non-Christians in a religious discussion of sorts – which you may think would be awkward – but he actually executes this very well. He first empathises with the opposition, and then proposes a thought that makes you question your beliefs. Now anybody who can evangelise on the first track of their album automatically gets 3 stars in my book!

Je’kob has an obvious eclectic taste in music which is apparent throughout the whole of his album. The song ‘Love Is All’ has nuances of rock, rap, hip-hop, pop and gospel all wrapped in one. This song is not overtly based on God – which is what an increasing number of contemporary Christian artists are doing today – but I understand why this is becoming more popular and I commend him for producing this style of music. Being a young person myself, I understand that traditional gospel music can become boring at times, whist listening to music which is not edifying at all (and most of the time counterproductive to being close to God) can be far more entertaining. The song ‘Love Is All’ uses contemporary synths, upbeat tempos, and uplifting strings which make it a very good song in my books.

‘Boom Shaka Laka’ is a unique song which uses very profound African drums/contemporary synths/dance style and underlying drum beats with a vocoder style voice, a blend which at first I wasn’t used to, but I must say grew on me. Je’kob talks about the fact that through God all things are possible: that through trust in God he can be whatever he wants to be. Over all it is a very motivational and uplifting song and a vital part of the album.

‘A Beautiful Place’ is the song that made me realise that this album is very much targeted at the 2013/2014 teenage Christian who is in need of music that is positive and creates a sociable environment. It combines dub-step/pop/rap and the Christian message beautifully. He is not so covert that the message is lost though; there is a part of the song where he says “in a crazy world, a crazy system, I’m holding on, to my daddy’s wisdom!”. He is obviously talking about God but the fact that he can do so in such natural sounding way, on an instrumental which is an eclectic mix from all different types of genres, makes for a brilliant song for modern young Christians.

The album has over 20 tracks, which is why I’ve reviewed every single one. I will say that if you are looking for something you can play in your downtime, maybe if you have some friends over, or whilst you are driving, I would definitely recommend this album. At the same time there are some reflective songs that discuss issues such as losing faith, self-condemnation, and confidence.

I would very boldly recommend this album from Je’kob.

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