Music Matters: Feeding the Poor with Beauty in Music

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Each Tuesday in Music Matters, Matthew Linder explores the intersections of music, culture, and faith.In a recent article ("Worship and Identity: The Role of Beauty in the Church") at Transpositions, I was struck by this assertion by Holly Ordway, chair of the Department of Apologetics and director of the MA in Cultural Apologetics at Houston Baptist University: “Certainly, all the money used to build a church and make it beautiful could be given to the poor instead—but that would not be feed … [Read more...]

Music Matters: Sweetly Singing over the Pain in Iron & Wine’s ‘Ghost on Ghost’

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Each Tuesday in Music Matters, Matthew Linder explores the intersections of music, culture, and faith.Iron & Wine's new album explores pain and vulnerability within the context of a relationship's many stages. Listen to the entire album on Spotify here.Listening to Iron & Wine is like wrapping yourself in a warm, soft, and cuddly blanket and drinking espresso while a poet recites stories of love from a coffee-shop stage. Reminiscent of the lush and intricately crafted soft rock of … [Read more...]

Music Matters: What Can Metal Tell Us About the Importance of the Resurrection?

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Each Tuesday in Music Matters, Matthew Linder explores the intersections of music, culture and faith. "Metal bands understand the importance of the resurrection because if it is true it changes everything."The resurrection of Christ. Not only does all of history hinge on that event but without it the gospel crumbles apart. While every aspect of the gospel is important, the resurrection in particular is what makes all the rest of gospel matter. The New Testament writers u … [Read more...]

Music Matters: In Search of 90’s CCM that Doesn’t Suck

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Each Tuesday in Music Matters, Matthew Linder explores the intersections of music, culture and faith.A search for Contemporary Christian Music from the 1990's that is aesthetically pleasing and theologically rich.Flavorwire recently provided their list of “In Search of Christian Music that Doesn’t Suck” which includes U2, Sufjan Stevens, Pedro the Lion and Faith + 1 (that's right, a fake band from an episode of South Park). Not to be outdone, I completed my own search but specifi … [Read more...]

Music Matters: Death, The End of All Things and Hope Laid Up in the Heavens in Muse’s “Exogenesis Symphony”

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Each Tuesday in Music Matters, Matthew Linder explores the intersections of music, culture and faith."Our wonder will become realigned to God’s grace and our hope is not in escaping this earth but making our stand here as the God of the universe one day will bring heaven down to us."From the day we are born, all of us are spiraling towards one thing—death. Yet in most Western cultures we rarely think about death on a personal level. Not many of us wake up in the morning struggling “wi … [Read more...]

Music Matters: David Bowie, Still Not Quite an Atheist

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Each Tuesday in Music Matters, Matthew Linder explores the intersections of music, culture and faith."All clichés are true. The years really do speed by. Life really is as short as they tell you it is. And there really is a God--so do I buy that one? If all the other clichés are true..." David Bowie Last week, Jimi Hendrix reigned in the number two spot on the Billboard 200 and this week that position is filled by David Bowie's new album The Next Day. It is only fitting that one of Bowie's s … [Read more...]

Music Matters: The 21st Century Return of Jimi Hendrix’s Electric Church Music

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Each Tuesday in Music Matters, Matthew Linder explores the intersections of music, culture and faith.“It’s funny how most people love the dead, once you’re dead you’re made for life.” – Jimi HendrixPeople, Hell and Angels, the final posthumously released album from Jimi Hendrix, debuted on the Billboard 200 at the number two spot. Hendrix died over 40 years ago, yet surprisingly, he is still able to garner enough attention to land him on the top of the charts beating out Bruno Mars, M … [Read more...]

Music Matters: The Airborne Toxic Event on Struggles This Side of Paradise

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Each Tuesday in Music Matters, Matthew Linder explores the intersections of music, culture and faith.The Airborne Toxic Event continues to explore life’s struggles on The Secret EP released March 11th, 2013.Mikel Jollett, lead singer of The Airborne Toxic Event, had this to say about an artist's expression of struggle (quoting from F. Scott Fitzgerald's This Side of Paradise): "You're not going to live a different kind of life than anyone else. You'll have the same ups and downs as most o … [Read more...]

Music Matters: Delighting in Silence

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Each Tuesday in Music Matters, Matthew Linder explores the intersections of music, culture and faith.An examination of the importance of silence in connecting with our God.Lent is a season of giving up something or taking on something new, to refocus the entirety of our being to the triune God. Since we are in the midst of this season, I thought I would reflect on our daily consumption of music and the need for us to engage more often with God in times of silence and stillness. … [Read more...]

Music Matters: The Voice of the Fatherless in Hip-Hop

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 "Learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless." (Isaiah 1:17)Each Tuesday in Music Matters, Matthew Linder explores the intersections of music, culture and faith.Reading the biographies of many of hip-hop artists unfolds a common theme, fatherlessness. Growing up in the Marcy Houses project, Jay-Z was raised by his mother because his father abandoned him at age eleven. Lil' Wayne's father left his mother when he was two years old and … [Read more...]


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