Home > CCM, Christian Music, Christian Pop, Christian Rock, Greatest Albums, Jesus Music > 183. No Compromise – Keith Green

183. No Compromise – Keith Green


Keith Green

Possibly no album or album title personifies it’s creator quite like Keith Green’s, “No Compromise.” A trite slogan in the hands of many artists this phrase is the ultimate adjective qualifier for the man. As uncomfortable his words and music may have been for many, it was never a feeling that he was pointing a finger without also pointing it at himself. But this is a review of great albums, not great men or personalities. And given the latter, the album is simply fantastic!

Like the predecessor, For Him Who Has Ears To hear, No Compromise combines Elton John type funky piano driven tunes and soaring and emotional ballads. Lyrically things are similar as well with a combination of rebuking and exhortive, prophetic declarations mixed with repentant and confessional compositions. There’s even another song about the Devil!

It may be simply perception, but No Compromise seems more serious and “mellower” than many other albums from Green, especially in comparison to FHWHETH. Perhaps it just related to the fact that the most popular and memorable songs from the album are the ballads. Make My Life a Prayer, How Can They Live Without Jesus, Asleep in the Light, My Eyes Are Dry and To Obey Is Better than sacrifice all remain classics in the truest sense of the word. Asleep in the Light may go down as the most convicting song in CCM history with the line “Jesus raised from the dead…and you can’t even get out of bed!” Ouch!

Two years before the release of No Compromise Tommy James (Shondells) would record “Don’t Wanna Fall Away From You” on a solo project. For years after its release the songs No Compromise contained would haunt, exhort and uplift millions.

  1. Brian
    February 22, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    I would say with “No Compromise” that this single album was the most influential album in CCM history…even to present day.
    Not only was Keith Green influencing while he was alive, and at this time may have been hitting his ‘stride” popularity-wise, but can you recall anyone else who has been listed as inspirational to get in to CCM than Keith Green, and in particular this album?

    I have a friend who is an illustrator and has done covers for Petra, Kerry Livgren and projects for Time, Christianity Today and the like.

    It simply is an album cover he rants about.

    The music is just like the album cover.

    It is powerful and direct and fearless.

    I simply don’t know how any other album can complete in this category.

  2. Dave H
    April 22, 2011 at 12:57 pm

    Brian…I agree that this album was a landmark album and probably deserves to be much higher on this list. Lists aside, it is simply brilliant in its content and ability to touch the human heart with emotions of repentance and then joy. There are many releases from this era that I simply cannot listen to because they are so “dated” in style. I cannot say that about Keith. His music is timeless. Like Mr. Lowman, I have a collection that ranks in the thousands that goes back to the late 60s. I can easily say I would put this album in my personal Top Ten.

  3. June 18, 2011 at 1:31 am

    I was shocked when I heard this for the first time. I was such a big fan of the album “For Him Who Has Ears to Hear”. This is different from that album. Kind of melancholic, I think. However, I like this album more and more every time I listen to it. It is hard to say which is my favorite song because there are no standout tracks.

  4. y2daddy
    February 4, 2012 at 1:47 am

    OK, this is the first time after 317 other reviews where I saw what was coming next at the bottom of the page and thought “Are you kidding?” 183? Way too low for such a classic.

  1. No trackbacks yet.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: