Diversity for God

The O.C. Supertones
Loud and Clear (BEC Recordings)

By David Lilly

Who would've thought that a Christian CD would kick off with a guitar sound straight out of the Black Sabbath catalogue? It's unusual and I couldn't agree more. Loud and Clear, from the O.C. Supertones, indulges in elements of metal, rap, punk, reggae, ska, doo-wop and straight-ahead rock (sometimes several within the same song), and even includes a horn section. Overall, their sound alternates between The Clash and The Attractions, since lead singer Matt Morginsky's voice more often than not resembles the nasally Elvis Costello, even when he's rapping.

All of this they do, and do well, as they make themselves carrier pigeons for the word of God on this CD. It is an entertaining, eccentric and outstanding piece of work.

Highlights include the first of several radio-friendly tunes, "Jury Duty," which is catchy and successfully blends rap, reggae and doo-wop. "Lift Me Up" starts with a little twist on the Lone Ranger theme, then segues into a galloping reggae-ska trip. A few seconds after that trip ends comes the powerful "Return of the Revolution." Fans of both metal and rap should relish the aggressive "Pandora's Box" and "Another Show."

The accompanying booklet contains amusing band photos, insightful notes about the songs, and definitions of a few terms The Supertones want the listener to clearly understand. Some of the music is quite aggressive, as is the singing, but it is more a healthy passion than anger. Most of the songs are danceable and the entire CD is recommended.