Fight for My Soul
It’s been seven long years since guitar prodigy Jonny Lang released a new record, but it certainly was worth the wait. Remaining true to his Christian/blues roots, Lang worked with award-winning writer/producer Tommy Sims on his latest album, Fight for My Soul, and the collaboration does not disappoint.
The first three tracks open strong and solid, hooking you immediately with a bluesy, R&B/rock sound that complements Lang’s raspy, gritty vocal style. If you’re not movin’ and groovin’ to the beat, especially on the first track, “Blew Up (The House),” then you’re either deaf or dead. Lang subtly is able to permeate an underlying Christian message throughout most of the eleven songs. The powerful title track, “Fight for My Soul,” a social commentary on rising above the sins of the father, is vintage Jonny Lang: This for the ones who were left with a price to pay, Forced to make good on mistakes they never made, For the ones who just found out they were never in control, They can take a lot, but they can never take your soul.
Once he reins you in, Lang veers off into a slower, more melodic sound with his renowned falsetto on “All of a Sudden,” a song inspired by his wife, Haylie. The heartfelt ballad was co-written by Lang and Nashville-based writers/producers Drew Ramsey and Shannon Sanders, who co-wrote and produced much of Lang’s last album, Turn Around, in 2006. Another stellar track, “Seasons,” is a song of hope, promise, and renewal: Unfortunately you have chosen a man, Upon whom sin has the upper hand, A house made of sand, is where I have forced you to live, And still you love me… Another first of the year is at hand, the second chance here for the taking. The last track, “I’ll Always Be,” starts out slowly with a simple piano and Lang’s voice, and then builds into a beautiful song of love and devotion complete with string accompaniment.
While the first and last tracks are vastly different stylistically, they are the two strongest on the record. Lang guides you on a pithy path that starts out with dance rhythms and wraps up with dense soul-searching, second chances, and the hope and promise of love.