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Andrew Peterson’s ‘Resurrection Letters, Vol. 1’: The Best Easter Album?

Andrew Peterson provides Christians joyous and sublime celebrations of Christ’s resurrection.
| Apr 22, 2019 | No comments |

Christian musician/novelist Andrew Peterson released his album “Resurrection Letters, Vol. 1” last year.

But only over this weekend did I finally listen to the full album. What a joyous experience.

After all, why should Christmas get all the good songs?

Peterson provides Christians joyous and sublime celebrations of Christ’s resurrection. With each song, I not only heard about resurrection truth. I also felt it. And that immediately begins with the album’s first entry, “His Heart Beats.”

As Matthew Gedars remarks in this YouTube comment:

Yet another example of why [Andrew Peterson]’s music has so much depth. The more you listen, the more things you pick up on. So many layers.

Since I first heard this song, I knew that the opening percussion, and indeed the percussion throughout, was mimicking a heart beat. I recently watched a video explaining how to cover Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” badly. Something clicked and I jumped back to this song. What I didn’t realize is the vocal melody is basically an EKG. It’s flat for the first few stanzas with only a “small murmur” in rise for one line before falling down “flat” again. Then the pre-chorus ramps up to a crescendo in “Crown Him the Lord of All.” That’s the first “lub” in the familiar lub-dub cardiac cycle. Then it slowly falls line by line in the chorus (that’s the “dub”) eventually landing on the same “flat” line again before moving to the next verse.

Everything about this song musically screams “His Heart Beats!”

Genius.1

I also loved Peterson’s ancient-tinged, New Earth longings of “Maybe Next Year”:

And his chorale-accompanied, call-and-response echo of Revelation 5 is simply sacred.

I’ll be getting the complete album, “Resurrection Letters Vol. 1” direct from Rabbit Room’s website, along with “Resurrection Letters Vol. 2.”2 And I plan to listen to these a lot. Not just on Resurrection Sundays.

  1. I’ve edited this slightly for style.
  2. Interestingly, according to my pastor, Matthew Breeden, Peterson actually recorded “Vol. 2” first, and with that title (Star Wars Episode IV style). It took him much longer to release vol. 1.
E. Stephen Burnett is coauthor of a nonfiction book about parenting and popular culture (title TBA), to release spring 2020 from New Growth Press. He also explores biblical truth and fantastic stories as editor in chief of Lorehaven Magazine and writer at Speculative Faith. He has also written for Christianity Today and Christ and Pop Culture. He and his wife, Lacy, live in the Austin area and serve as members of Southern Hills Baptist Church.

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