" . . . with singing and dancing"

Bubble (Warner Alliance)
We Are the Music Makers (Tooth & Nail Records)
Joy Electric

By Robert Gruber

It would seem that much of the modern church has accepted the idea of Christians dancing -- after all, it's said, if David could do it, why can't we? Given that, it should come as no surprise that there is now Christian dance music.

From Bristol, England, DBA began several years ago as 65 dba, a ministry designed to reach out to the then-burgeoning "rave" scene. Their first album for Warner Bros., Bubble finds DBA toning down the on-fire evangelism of previous albums Shout and The Great Awakening, pumping up the beats and donning a futuristic "space cadet" image. The cover art may seem a bit silly, but songs like "Spiritual Woman," "3-D" and their version of the Dionne Warwick hit "I Say A Little Prayer" will infect you with their non-stop rhythm power.

Joy Electric is one-man-show Ronnie Martin, a pioneer in Christian techno since the early '90s when he was in Dancehouse Children. Called a "laser-guided pop genius" by Tooth & Nail chief Brandon Ebel, Martin makes the kind of music you either love or hate. Annoying to some, innovative to others, We Are the Music Makers (title taken from "Willie Wonka") will only serve to broaden that gap. In an attempt to get back to "the real," Music Makers was produced sans samplers, drum machines or computers, and was "created from scratch on the synthesizer with the intent of making the purest form of synthetic music possible" [artist's words, not mine]. For his part, Martin makes flawlessly smooth and original sounds, crooning ornate lyrics from songs like "Burgundy Years," "I Beam, You Beam" and "Christendom on White Horses" (taken from Revelations). My advice: try before you buy.