Thursday, March 19th, 2020

David Dunn – Yes and No

Mostly “no”, actually…


Alfred Soto: Will you choose already? Damn.

Josh Langhoff: Christian music rests atop a cold irony. Despite celebrating the unfathomable work of an infinite deity, all that “canst thou draw out leviathan with a hook” stuff — the obvious answer being no, thou canst not, so stayst in thy lane — Christian hymns often sacrifice musical transcendence for utilitarian purpose. This goes back at least to practical hymn-writer Martin Luther. Hymns can be vessels of praise overwhelming sense and reason, but just as often they’re mnemonic devices for keeping God’s truths on the assembly’s brains when they’re going about their business. As the memory of Steven Curtis Chapman’s “Let Us Pray” regularly calls me to prayer, this passably catchy electrostim aims to remind positive, encouraging Christians how those prayers work. Spoiler: It’s not always the way you want! This is A+ theology, but at least Garth Brooks included a sermon illustration.

Kylo Nocom: “Make me more like You / Less like me,” he sings in a vocoded choir of himself. God’s plan has never sounded so self-loathing yet so self-righteous.

Wayne Weizhen Zhang: Desiccated and insipid, “Yes and No” is exactly what I’d expect from a white guy with dreadlocks whose claim to fame is appearing on Season 2 of The Voice

Thomas Inskeep: Chainsmokers-core infiltrates CCM: CC(ED)M? I can see this becoming a popular praise & worship song at Millenial/Gen-Z-focused churches/youth services, but on its own it’s pretty limp. I suspect it would benefit from a more fleshed-out arrangement with a full band, because I like the lyrics fine, but the heavy EDM-ness and production let “Yes and No” down to the point where I have to say: no.

David Sheffieck: The production is the kind of middling synth-and-snare playlist-core that made me stop checking Spotify’s New Music Friday, all contrast and interest and personality stripped out in search of the median — in search of the most high-ranking placements as a palate cleanser between the A- and B-tier artists. But the joke’s on them, because as we face down a pandemic I’m finding a song about god’s ineffable plan pretty fucking abrasive.

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