Michael Lambert Collecting Texture

There are two kinds of music that I tend not to listen to: Satanic death metal and Christian rock. Give me uncomplicated agnostic rock and I’m fine, but as soon as there’s a message of worship (one way or the other), I feel uneasy and run in the opposite direction. So that means I’d never heard of Ontario’s Speck Seven, a Christian power pop group whose 1997 album, Receiver, apparently did fairly well. Their front-man, Michael Lambert, is now stepping out on his own with his debut solo release Collecting Texture. He’s following a more traditional path, using fiddles and tin whistles to come up with songs with an obvious Celtic influence. Nevertheless, the message in most songs is still the same and still pretty obvious too — there’s no misconstruing the fact that this is Christian rock. But that’s fine; I suppose the songs have to be about something that the songwriter feels comfortable with, and there is definitely a target audience out there, just not me. The songs are all pleasant enough, with lots of acoustic guitars and earnest vocals that sound a lot like the Goo Goo Dolls, at times. Unfortunately most of the songs (including a cover of Lenny Kravitz’s "Rosemary”) just blend into each other, lacking any personality of their own. (Special Kitchen)