Review by Patrick Joseph
It’s plain and simple… "State of Grace” rocks hard. Well done in so many ways, this is highly intelligent rock music that delivers honesty and integrity. Production values are off the charts on this one. Crunchy guitars are dialed in just perfectly. B3 organ provides that extra sauce during choruses. Drums are punchy and airy, driving the bus. Bass is present and poised, providing clearly expressed rhythms that sit nicely in the mix.
All instrumental performances exhibit professionalism and passion. Highly skilled but not at all clinical.
Lyrically, “State of Grace” is evolved and reflective. A true break-up song, O’Connor resists the urge to express bitterness and instead encourages growth and reflection. “But I will not retaliate, cause my life’s just great, no need to reciprocate, it's just not my state.” Listeners will love the message of perseverance and self-discipline expressed in these lyrics. “You tried to tear me up and then spit me out like broken glass on a highway crash, you did a pretty shameful thing when we said goodbye and you walked out with that ring.” By empowering himself to choose his reaction to a difficult life situation, O’Connor preaches a message of strength and reliance.
“State of Grace” features expert songwriting. The arrangement of this song supports its emotional tone perfectly and creates an undeniable groove. An expressive and artistic bridge develops and evolves seamlessly back into a powerhouse chorus. O’Connor’s vocals are confident and expressive on this track. Listeners will love the total control of sound expression that is achieved during this song, simmering from start to finish. “State Of Grace” is a “pound the steering wheel while driving” kind of a song. This one will stick with you and put a smile on your face.
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About James Kevin O'Connor
His sense of himself is harmoniously in sync with his world around him. He is as complex as his lyrics and as strong in his resolve to live out his dharmic, creative plan, to its very (sweet) end.
Singer, songwriter, podcaster/Radio & TV personality, and music producer James Kevin O’Connor is also the Founder/Chairman/CEO of the James O’Connor Agency based in Nashville TN, which has a specialty for writing and producing branded songs for nonprofits, corporations, authors, and keynote speakers. He has written, produced, and performed on many of his solo albums through the years, including, "175 Cherry Lane”, and his two latest, "Geography of the Soul" and “Gratitude", which were recorded on Music Row in Nashville, TN with "A list" musicians, and producer, Kim Copeland.
James has hosted over 300 podcasts with artists, authors, speakers, and thought leaders from around the world, through his show dHarmic Evolution. James has also developed a prison ministry that was born in October 2020 and has gone to several prisons to perform his original inspired music and storytelling sharing the word of the Lord to instill hope in those who are incarcerated. He also became a Certified Christian Chaplain in May of 2020.