Sovereign (Deluxe Edition)
For more than three decades, Michael W. Smith has shown an amazing ability to embrace current pop/rock sounds without blurring his identity as a Christian singer/songwriter. He’s done it again with Sovereign, an album bristling with new songwriting and production ideas. For his first studio-recorded worship project featuring original material, Smitty cowrote with such notables as Jason Ingram, Kyle Lee, and Mia Fields (as well as his son Ryan). There are touches of Mumford & Sons–style modern folk found here, heard especially in the galloping banjo-accented beat of “Sky Spills Over.” Tracks like “Miracle” and “All Arise” have overtones of arena rock with their triumphant imagery and ascending melodies. “The One That Really Matters”—a duet with Kari Jobe—ranks among the most eloquent praise ballads that Smith has ever recorded. Covers of Worship Central’s “The Same Power” and All Sons & Daughters’ “Christ Be All Around Me” are given expansive treatments that remain humbly reverent at their core. Production input from Seth Mosley (MercyMe), Chris Stevens (TobyMac, Mandisa), and Jeremy Edwardson (Jesus Culture) gives Sovereign an assertive au courant sound that complements the timeless content of its lyrics.