Jonathan Nelson
Better Days

Anyone that is familiar with Gospel music knows about the tremendous writing talent of Jonathan Nelson. Consider songs such as Donald Lawrence's "Healed", Youth for Christ's "The Struggle Is Over" and "My Praise Is A Weapon" from The Potter's House Mass Choir.

Nelson amazed many with "My Name Is Victory" from his own Right Now Praise project from 2008. Now he's back with Better Days, featuring praise and worship and a sprinkle of good ole' fashioned choir music.

CD  More than once I have felt slighted after listening to a 10-song project. Not so with Better Days, for it does what even many larger projects sadly do not— leave you satisfied and wanting more. Aaron Lindsey produces and Purpose just brings sings the rafters off! Nelson writes or co-writes most of the songs continuing his run as one of today's most prolific songwriters. He doesn't lean too heavily on special guests, but the inclusion of his twin, Jason Nelson and also Kierra "Kiki" Sheard is just right.

There's something about a Caribbean-flavored praise that really draws the people. Jonathan has just the song in "Cry Holy" that will lift you up while honoring God.

Please know this about Jonathan Nelson; he is a writer that pushes past the cliché, rarely relying on the pat church phrases. He and Purpose make the proclamation that "Praise Saved My Life". The band brings some serious heat on this one!

"I Am Your Song" is a gorgeous ballad of beauty and wonderfully written to say the least. The Nashville String Machine weave their melodic and engaging sounds fittingly as the group sings the lyrics, "orchestrate your symphony through me". This one will be sung by praise teams and choirs throughout the country.

The worship medley is packed with some heavy material such as Tasha Cobb's "Smile" and the Matt Redman's "Better Is One Day". It then flows into the "Draw Me Nearer/Agnes Dei/Smile medley". Without sounding overdramatic, it is almost too much to handle. It really is just that powerful.

Jonathan's twin and fellow worship leader, Jason, joins him on "Another Way", a churchy and anthemic song of testimony.

Lead single, "Expect the Great" is a high energy praise song, as is the swinging "Performance" featuring the vocals of Kierra "Kiki" Sheard. "Performance" is another example of the Jonathan's innovative writing skills.

With this ten song power-pack, Jonathan has actually topped his prior release. Do not deprive yourself of Better Days.

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Production: Aaron Lindsey
album release date: Sept 14, 2010
Integrity Music

— review by Dwayne Lacy

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