If every album serves as a single snapshot of an artist's current season, then Tenth Avenue North's new release Followers (Provident Label Group), is a Polaroid coming to life in full color. Brilliant hues of exuberance, confidence and unwavering hope saturate the band's follow-up to 2014's Cathedrals. Every cut finds Mike Donehey (lead vocals, guitar), Jeff Owen (guitar, vocals), Brendon Shirley (keys, vocals), Ruben Juarez (bass, vocals) and Jason Jamison (drums) basking in the pure joy discovered only in following Christ.
Followers – the quintet's fifth official studio project – charts a new course for the beloved band and finds the five men with hearts full and hands open. Heading into the studio with producers John Fields (Switchfoot), Jason Ingram (Chris Tomlin), Paul Mabury (Lauren Daigle) and Colby Wedgeworth (Jordan Feliz), Tenth Avenue North began to craft a fresh collection of songs every bit as colorful as the album's artwork.
The heartbeat of Followers is one of surrender and complete obedience. On EDM-infused lead single "What You Want," the group aligns their dreams with the desires of Christ while the apropos "Afraid" opens the set with a pensive, synth-soaked anthem for today's culture. Passionately tender ballad "I Have This Hope" is rooted in Isaiah 43 and was penned in honor of Owen's sister-in-law who was suddenly diagnosed with stage 4 cancer.
Mid-way through the set, the moving "Sparrow (Under Heaven's Eyes)," acknowledges our desire to be seen by the God of the universe. It's the manifestation of the band coming to grips with letting go of their dreams, their plans and their aspirations and putting everything in the hands of the God who cares for them individually infinitely more than the birds of the field. Tenth Avenue North may not know what the future holds, but no matter where life leads, they know who they'll be following.