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Voice From Home
Artist: FFH 
Label: Sony/BMG/Essential
Length: 12/53:57

FFH has built a solid following among CCM circles by focusing on two strengths: songs centered around the hope found in Christ, and vocal harmonies.  Voice From Home maintains the first half of the formula, but the surprise here is that Jeromy Deibler and company have taken a "divide and conquer" approach on their latest project. 

The album seems slightly more engineered than their previous output, especially in the area of Jennifer Deibler's vocals the studio enhancement is fairly apparent, particularly in "Can't Let Go."   "The Only Hand You Need" and "I Am Love" come closest to matching the trademark sounds heard on albums like I Want to be Like You and Still the Cross

"Great Big Problem" makes an attempt to break away from the radio friendly FFH style, but regrettably mutes the guitars here, and comes across as basically a Jeromy solo effort.   "Can't Let Go," oddly enough, employs a piano introduction that strongly reminds the listener of Springsteen's "Born to Run," which  is then followed by Jennifer's vocals. 

"It's You" is the most satisfying track to long time fans, trading lead vocals and then adding three part harmony to its chorus.   It embodies the meaning of I Samuel 16:7, speaking to God placing value on the heart of a man, rather than in his appearance.  

In many ways, Voice From Home seems disjointed, as if the Deiblers and Mark Vogel wrote their songs separately, then attempted to figure out what the others were saying while in studio.   A certain cohesiveness is lacking through about half of the disc.  But when it comes together, as on "I Am Love," it is as solid as anything in their catalog.   A hit and miss effort from a group than has done much better.

Brian A. Smith
18 February 2006



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