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Lunch » Tags » Music » Reviews » Welcome to Diverse City » User review

DC Talk Vet's Second Solo Effort

  • May 21, 2007
Rating:
+5
While I was in high school and college in the early/mid 90's, I dived headfirst into Christian music. I'm not talking about Sandi Patti, Amy Grant, and Steve Green. I'm talking about rock groups such as Petra, PFR, acoustic rockers Jars of Clay and bands such as the Newsboys and Audio Adrenaline. The one band that I often steered clear of was DC Talk. Why? Because everyone I talked to would tell me that they were a rap act and, well, I really don't like rap that much. Well, when "Jesus Freak" was released, I took notice of DC Talk. They weren't just a rap band. They were much more than that. I eventually went on to purchase more of their work and came to appreciate their mixed bag of genres and even enjoy the rap tunes.

Although I haven't heard "Momentum," I decided to pick up "Welcome To Diverse City" because I heard "The Slam" on one of the "X" compilation albums. Tobymac is in top-notch form here. One of the greatest things about his music is that you cannot label it as just rap, rock, hip-hop, or anything else. He literally crosses multiple genres, often in the same song. Each and every song on this album is unique and at the same time equal to every other song on the disc. You'll hear rap, hard rock, traces of nu-metal, soul, hip-hop, and techno music. It's all delivered with a solid, Christ-centric message of love, salvation, and evangelization. My favorite songs include "The Slam," "Diverse City," "Catchafire" and "Burn for You."

If you enjoy today's many secular hip-hop, rap, and rock artists, check out Tobymac. His message is a positive one that you can actually play around the children without worry. It's nice to hear a guy with such talent using his skills to promote Jesus Christ. In a world of homogenized pop and rock (both secular and Christian), Tobymac is a breath of fresh air that deserves more attention than he is getting.

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About the reviewer
Kendall Fontenot ()
Ranked #17
Despite looking extremely cool, I have to admit that I'm a dork. I grew up on the outskirts of the small town of Oberlin, LA. I have since relocated to the Lake Charles, LA area.I love my home state … more
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Wiki

It won't take you long after the opening strains of "Toby's back" from the opening track ofWelcome To Diverse Cityto realize that yes indeed, Toby Mac is back with his second solo effort and follow-up to the superbMomentum. It's apparent from the beginning of this release that the studio wizard and third member of DC Talk is back in the house with another rich blend of rap, soul, pop, and techno. All the while, this DC Talk-er is laying down the gospel of one God, one love, and one people. Leading off with the smooth rap of "Hey Now," Toby Mac promises us to "set a new pace" because "it's been a long time comin' but I'm serving up the sequel." And serving up he does well with healthy portions of hard rock ("Slam"), funky soul withBootsy Collins("Welcome To Diverse City"), smooth pop ("Gone"), disco rock ("Getaway Car"), and biographical rap ("Gotta Go"). Building off his group and solo release experience (not to mention multiple production jobs for other artists), Toby Mac flows with a lyrical and stylistic consistency that holds together. Ultimately what he does so well is fly all the colors of the musical rainbow in one banner, seamlessly weaving different styles into one unmistakable flag. It's a mark all his own and worthy of merit in the Christian music world and beyond.--Michael Lyttle
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Label: Forefront
Artist: tobyMac
Release Date: October 5, 2004

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