Music at Mars Hill: Most Anticipated Albums of 2012

Music at Mars Hill is a weekly column by Luke Larsen that seeks to find God amidst the newest trends in both mainstream music and independent music.Last week, I looked toward the new year by jotting down some New Year's Music Resolutions for 2012. This week, I thought it would be fitting to list some of my most anticipated releases of 2012. I have more details for some of these and less for others, but all been officially announced. There are a ton of great releases on the horizon, but these … [Read more...]

Music at Mars Hill: New Year's Music Resolutions for 2012

Music at Mars Hill is a weekly column by Luke Larsen that seeks to find God amidst the newest trends in both mainstream music and independent music.Christmas is over, and it's that time of the year when we start looking forward to another year and the dreadful idea of considering New Year's resolutions once again. This is what's on my mind heading into another year of music-listening . . . feel free to add some of these to your own resolution list.Don't let genres or stereotypes hold you … [Read more...]

Music at Mars Hill: The Roots and the Suffering of the Innocent

Music at Mars Hill is a weekly column by Luke Larsen that seeks to find God amidst the newest trends in both mainstream music and independent music.The Roots have always had a thinking man's rap group, and their new concept album, undun, is certainly no exception. The album tells the story of a man named Redford Stephens (based off the Sufjan Stevens song "Redford") who makes some bad decisions based on his harsh urban surroundings. The album, which officially was released yesterday, tells the … [Read more...]

Music at Mars Hill: John Mark McMillan's Proclamation of Hope

Music at Mars Hill is a weekly column by Luke Larsen that seeks to find God amidst the newest trends in both mainstream music and independent music.When I listen to Economy, the newest release from singer-songwriter John Mark McMillan, one word comes to mind: hope. Taking on the heavy issues of economic recession, hopelessness, and fear, McMillan writes on how God is our ultimate hope in both this life and the next. But in what has become synonymous with releases from McMillan, Economy … [Read more...]

Music at Mars Hill: Does the Message Matter?

Music at Mars Hill is a weekly column by Luke Larsen that seeks to find God amidst the newest trends in both mainstream music and independent music. As something of a followup to an article I wrote a few weeks back, this week I wanted to address a video by one of my favorite music reviewers on the Web, Anthony Fantano of The Needle Drop. In the video (which is posted above), he finds himself perplexed at the following question: "Does the message or moral integrity of a song's lyrics e … [Read more...]

Music at Mars Hill: A Closer Look at Mylo Xyloto

Music at Mars Hill is a weekly column by Luke Larsen that seeks to find God amidst the newest trends in both mainstream music and independent music.I previously wrote a bit of a rant here on Music at Mars Hill on why Coldplay was moving closer and closer to populist ambiguity when they released their EP leading up to Mylo Xyloto. And now that we've got the full album, there's been a lot of talk about the thing (as is to be expected in a Coldplay release). A recent article over at … [Read more...]

Music at Mars Hill: Brandon Flowers on Mormonism

As many have seen, the Church of Latter-Day Saints has recently gone on something of a viral YouTube spree, creating promotional videos that spotlight different members of the Mormon church who tell a little about their lives and then profess their Mormon faith at the end of it ("And I'm a Mormon" campaign). They're rather simple videos and seem to be made in desire not to necessarily convert people to Mormonism, but instead to simply normalize how mainstream culture views them.They've had a … [Read more...]

Music at Mars Hill: Diving Into M83's Dream World

Music at Mars Hill is a weekly column by Luke Larsen that seeks to find God amidst the newest trends in both mainstream music and independent music.The process of growing up is one we all experience in different ways at different times in our lives. I've observed in my own life, especially as I grow older and more mature, there often has been a conflict between who I was and what I believed as an adolescent and what I am to be and believe now. For me, this conflict has often shown up and made … [Read more...]

Music at Mars Hill: Switchfoot's Vice Verses

Music at Mars Hill is a weekly column by Luke Larsen that seeks to find God amidst the newest trends in both mainstream music and independent music.Few bands that started in the financially successful thrust of the 90s Christian rock movement have come out the other side both financially stable and musically inventive. Interestingly enough, oftentimes what's created on the other side has been some of the most engaging Christian music in the industry, in that it doesn't necessarily fit into our … [Read more...]

Music at Mars Hill: Why Music?

My friend asked me the other day why I wanted to write about spend my life talking about music and our relation to it rather than more weighty topics like theology or politics (as she knew I had strong opinion on those matters as well). At the time, I had a boring response: that music had always been an important part of my life and that I genuinely knew more about music than anything else. And while that is certainly true, the more I thought about the question later on, the more I realized that … [Read more...]


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