Review: Colton Dixon- Identity

Oftentimes the problem with Christian pop is that artists rely on the power of faith rather than the power of musicianship. A genre that preaches the gospel of Jesus will always have an audience, but that audience is often simply listening because they need music that is catchy that also does not threaten their beliefs. Colton Dixon’s album Identity is the purest form of that, a toothless pop album that is entirely forgettable. Dixon’s work post-American Idol has been uniformly unremarkable, but this album has the distinction of being the most ambitious and well-produced one that he has attempted. The deluxe edition of the album is the one that commands the most respect. It is separated into three sections: THE MIND, THE BODY, and THE SPIRIT. Each is introduced by a short spoken word sermon that sounds vaguely techno, which briefly touches on the subject for each section. They then smoothly transition into gorgeously produced tracks, about five per section. The lyrics are unremarkable, often the sound effects are kitschy (especially on “Warriors,” which opens with a Maori haka), and Dixon does not even mention Christ until about a third of the way through the album on “THE BODY.” On the non-deluxe version, some of the best songs on the album are cut entirely, including the orchestral and dramatic “In My Veins,” which is reminiscent of some of Skillet or Evanescence’s work. The rest of it, though, sounds like an uninspired, noncommittal effort to ape the sound of Calvin Harris or Charli XCX and bring in the Christian crowd. Nothing on Colton Dixon’s album is distinguishable or even recognizable as different. His lyrics are weak, and though his vocals are strong, they are uninspiring. Once again, it appears that Colton Dixon simply did not dare to reach high enough to make something remarkable. 4/10 -William Weinstein