We’ve teamed up with our friends over at One Man In The Middle to bring you regular, unbiased and honest reviews of music albums and EPs from Christian artists and musicians here in the UK and worldwide. This week we have Stronger Than Everby Rueban with an overall review score of 8 out of 10.
All the way from Hyderabad, India, Rueban’s hard-hitting brand of metal is here, bringing with it a powerful message. Huge riffs and slamming grooves accompany powerful vocals which lyrically follow the teachings of Jesus Christ and the ethics of Hardcore.
Rueban comes from Hyderabad, India and is the lead vocalist and drummer for the Christian band “Onslaught” and he has recently released his second solo album “Stronger Than Ever”. Rueban’s style of music is a mixture of post-punk hardcore alternative metal with a few other bits and pieces thrown in for good measure.
This album is incredibly thematic and the songs never stray far from the key theme of strength in the life of the believer. In fact 4 of the 8 songs titles begin with “Strength Through…” starting with “Strength Through Faith”. This track opens softly with a preacher saying “Faith is what causes God to move, there are yeses in your future waiting for you to come looking for them.” As this sentence is being said a guitar slices the background silence. Then some punchy drums before a typical metal vocal with a driving guitar completing the effect. I have no doubt that Stuart Hamblen who wrote “It Is No Secret (What God Can Do)” never really expected his popular chorus to end up like this, but somehow it works well in a strange way!
This first track is just a quick one clocking in at 2 minutes, having said that none of these tracks break the 3 minute mark, “Scars” is the closest getting all the way to 2:59! “Strong Tower” with Rueban isn’t the family song that bridges the gap in the all age worship services. In fact it’s a different concept – it’s not a reference to the name of the Lord being a strong tower, instead it’s about building a tower of faith which makes the believer strong. If you want a sample of Rueban’s music then take a look at his video with lyrics.
There are sounds that you wouldn’t expect to hear in “Strength Through Honour” which towards the end dissolves into what I think is meant to be scratching a record, but to my ears sounded more like a dogs squeaky toy! The song barely finishes and moves into “Scars” which shares a similar beat and guitar sound.
“Strength Through Perseverance” is probably the songs that has the clearest vocals of all the tracks. The imagery and style may seem aggressive, but the lyrics are about carrying on, not letting other people get to you and try and stop you in your mission and purpose. It does seem odd to hear the snarled lyrics carrying a positive message through this album.
It’s time to be honest,I have never really been into this style of music. However listening to Rueban made a nice change for me.I don’t know how ‘pure’ true metal-heads would consider this album to be as there were a lot of different influences mixed into this production. For me the main problem as a listener was the middle set of songs that seemed to have no change in tempo or style and with it being difficult to make out all the words the music alone wasn’t quite enough to carry it.
The first couple of tracks and the last couple were the ones that held my interest and I felt were musically progressive. I do love what Rueban is doing in an often overlooked genre in the Christian music world. If you appreciate this style then I am sure there is plenty here that you will love. More than the style I love the heart behind this album. It’s true, encouraging and honest and Rueban wants to build listeners up and that cannot be a bad thing!
For track listing, ranking breakdown and more check out onemaninthemiddle.com