Review by Sylvie Marie & Staff
Born and raised in Dallas, Texas, Katy Crawford is a singer-songwriter and Worship Leader who grew up in the church ministering alongside her family. Combining her love for Jazz, Bluegrass, and pop, Katy writes original songs that communicate the fulfilling relationship she has experienced in Christ. She released her first EP in French, Pour Te Louer (To Praise You), in 2015, followed by her debut full-length project in English, Our Love Story, in 2016. In November 2017, she released the EP, Closer, followed by singles, "Grace That Saves the World" (2019) and "By My Side" (2020). Her latest EP, Dwell, recorded in Nashville with Producer Billy Smiley, includes songs written from the Psalms.
The first song off the EP, is the victory song titled "Save Me." Starting like a ray of morning light, ambient orchestration and strumming guitar slowly awaken the track like the warm sun. Soft tapping organic wooden percussion sets the rhythm as Katy sings, "Many do rise up against me. Many have said of my soul, there is no help from God. There is no use in striving."
A solid drum beat and piano join the creative production giving this song a dynamic anthem-like quality. Katy's strong and confident vocals command the mix. This is a singer whose voice could fill a large hall with no problem. A very exciting bridge section marches forward with intensity created by moving 8th notes in 6/8 that fill your soul as Katy proclaims, "Salvation belongs to the Lord. And His blessing’s upon His people. His blessing’s upon His people." "Save Me" is about having no doubt that God is with you, even through fearful times. "God is your shield."
"You are Holy", the second song on the EP, was inspired by Psalm 22. Set to softly played arpeggiated piano, the beautiful song is about finding strength when you are broken. A gentle ambience shimmers behind the piano. Background vocals are delicate and haunting. The lyrics are deeply introspective and poetic as Katy describes being "poured out like water" and "My heart is wax and melting within." Katy's moving performance showcases the emotion of surrendering.
The joyful "Dwell (Psalm 23)" is sure to be a fan favorite. "I walk with you in green pastures. I walk with you by still waters." Like an over-flowing cup, the song is filled to the brim with joy as the music flows like a gentle country-rock song creating a nice sway. Listeners are treated to the soulfulness in Katy's natural vocal performance.
"Hiding Place" is a meditative song about patience. Here, the lyrics speak of waiting for God's timing and purpose. "For you have your hand on me...and as I dwell in this place of waiting for you, I think of your goodness. I think of your kindness. I think of your mercy..." Light acoustic strumming guitar and delicate, flowing piano arpeggios support a rich harmonic texture. Hand-drumming creates an ancient sound while gorgeous violin parts add to the song's depth and richness. A lovely fingerstyle guitar with light orchestration sets the stage for the moving song of praise, "Whole Heart." The percussion clap on 2 and 4 invites listeners to participate. Moving layers of strings weave around the melodic phrases. Katy shines with genuine gratitude and praise that is felt in every note she sings. "I will praise you Lord with my whole heart."
"Who Am I" ends the EP with an exquisite performance. The song opens with strumming guitar and electric guitar motifs giving the song a bluesy vibe that perfectly matches the song's tonality. Katy reaches deep within and produces a wonderful vocal performance that moves from reflective to sweepingly glorious. "How excellent is your name oh Lord, I give glory, glory to you."
Katy Crawfords EP, Dwell, is one of the best inspirational, Christian EP's of the year. Filled with moments of introspection and reflection, brokenness and spiritual healing, exuberance and joy, Katy never waivers from the theme of EP - Faith conquers fear. God is always there for you. Kudos to Producer, Billy Smiley, for a masterful production that is chart-worthy.
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