The Phantom Tollbooth

When Deep Calls to Deep
Artist: Paul Oakley
Label: Survivor Records/Kingsway (UK)
Length: 11 tracks/54:55
For this, his second album, Paul Oakley has diversified somewhat from his britpop/mod-rock influenced debut. There are touches of the Verve thrown in, and the sound is slightly more spacious. Oakley's vocals are husky in a way reminiscent of many a rock singer, but like the songs, they unfortunately don't shine. Many aspects of the human experience are touched on within the lyrics of these worship songs, but to these ears there is nothing particularly insightful. The arrangements may be more open, but that space has not been used to best effect, and the whole album washes over me, leaving little behind in its wake. In as crowded a marketplace as the contemporary worship scene is becoming, that is disappointing.
By James Stewart (09/16/98)