205. Shatter the Darkness – Fireworks
SHATTER THE DARKNESS (1979)
vastly superior to the previous years debut release and not quite a rock driven as the following album, Shatter the Darkness ends up being the very best of the Fireworks releases. Creative, original and distinctly more unique than nearly all of its contemporaries.
It is really difficult to find accurate comparisons for the band though at times there are touches of Supertramp and others something akin to Toto, but neither are really accurate. perhaps that is a good sign for an industry of copycats. Also lyrically the band had separated itself from much of CCM for the day.
“Beautiful Woman” retells the story of the woman caught in adultery in a rather dark and brooding musical backdrop. Change My Heart is the band at its core finest. Not too heavy, but a driving keyboard and big vocal sound. There is always a sense of almost bordering on artistic and progressive rock but they never quite pass the line. The closest would be “rock Band,” one of the more intelligent apologetic for the use of rock music in Christian circles.
At other times, like on “After the Rain,” there is more of 2nd Chapter of Acts classical sound. This is due in a part to a very heavy piano driven sound noted in 2nd Chapter of Acts and Keith Green. “I Know Power” again bring the band to its strongest footing with the piano driven rock style similar to Supertramp.
Ultimately, though, it’s all about Marty McCall’s impressive vocal range and emotive balance. Very few artists in CCM were blessed such an original and powerful voice. The diversity of the band and his later projects pay tribute to that fact.