See my GMA interview with Phil.
Phil Keaggy's recorded career has spanned over three decades. Over the recent past he's produced only instrumental projects; Dream Again showcases his vocals for the first time since 2000's Inseperable. Billed as "primarily love songs," this record offers mostly mellow pop songs.
"Redemption" sounds a lot like Dylan, which is hard to imagine considering Phil's smooth voice, but he pulls it off very well. "Revive Me" rocks more than most of the songs, featuring plenty of enjoyable guitar work.
"Love is the Reason" shines in McCartneyesque-style as Phil sings a love song apparently dedicated to his manager Robin and her husband Keith. It may be the best song on the record:
All is renewed in the springtime / All is reborn in His time / Meeting you brought me the healing I needed / I am yours and you are mine // God is so good I remember / The touch of His love / Of His grace / All that I longed for / All that I dreamed for / I found revealed in your face
"It's You and Me" proclaims Phil's love for wife Bernadette, while "There With You" was written for 21-year-old Olivia. I can relate when I hear Phil sing to her, "Traveling the world with your friends along side of you," as my daughter Erika (almost 20) is currently a nanny in Switzerland. The family theme goes beyond just the lyrics. Phil's son Ian makes his debut with a spoken-word performance on "Why" and lead acoustic guitar on "Revive Me." Daughter Alicia's smooth voice superbly complements Phil's as they combine on "Micah 6:8," a song with Middle Eastern flavors and some nice electric guitars.
Phil also has songs for two of his sisters, making this a truly family-oriented album. Dream Again will be a welcome addition to the collection of any Keaggy fan. For those looking for scorching Keaggy guitars, the new Glass Harp DVD is the answer, but for some gentle Phil, Dream Again fits the bill superbly.
Visit Phil Keaggy.