All That Is Within Me
After a string of highly-successful releases, MercyMe remains fervent in their Christian faith and consistent in their output. The group has been faulted by critics for playing it safe, and All That is Within Me (2007) may not silence all doubters, but those willing to listen with fresh ears will find this a nearly flawlessly-executed release. The traces of country-pop evident in the group’s early work have largely been replaced by a modern British rock sound. Under Brown Bannister’s production guidance, there’s an impressive attention to detail here — tracks like “Sanctified” and “Goodbye Ordinary” combine elaborate arrangements with urgent rhythms and astringent guitar lines. “Time Has Come” displays an aggressive drive, while “Grace Tells Another Story” has a minor-key keening feel and “Finally Home” rides a pulsing acoustic groove, while Bart Millard’s vocals convey certitude and humility no matter the sonic setting. “You Rein” is the album’s showpiece, a baroquely-orchestrated pop/rock paean to God’s majesty. If not a radical departure, All That is Within Me is a convincing restatement of MercyMe’s strengths, both as creative artists and as messengers for Christ.