Album Review: Kari Jobe, “Where I Find You”

ALBUM TITLE: Where I Find You
ARTIST: Kari Jobe
BEST TRACK/S: Steady My Heart, We Are, Love Came Down

Contemporary Christian singer and Gateway worship leader Kari Jobe’s latest release, Where I Find You, improves significantly from her self-titled Integrity Records release three years ago. Where Kari Jobe was charming and raw, Where I Find You is significantly more polished, more anthemic, and more likeable. There are two central keys, in my opinion, to Jobe’s welcome upgrade: Sparrow Records, Jobe’s new label, and producers Ed Cash and Matt Bronleewe.

Sparrow Records’ decision to hook Jobe up with Bronleewe and Cash, who have worked wonders with artists like Chris Tomlin, Casting Crowns, Matthew West, and Amy Grant, among other top names in Contemporary Christian music, is integral to the overall success of this record. The intimate rawness of Jobe’s debut is raised to a higher level, making for songs that can translate easily from stadiums and arenas to intimate church worship.

Thematically, Where I Find You may be one of the strongest releases of 2012. With songs that run an impressive range of CCM themes, from God’s sovereignty, holiness, and mercy, to the urgent role played by the church in today’s rapidly secular world, Jobe’s sophomore release is mature and relevant, yet noteworthy for its acknowledgment of a God Who deserves worship.

Listen to “Love Came Down” by Kari Jobe
Production-wise, Cash ensures the commercial and aural viability of this release with a clever mix of radio-friendly melodies and singalong lyrics that run the gamut of Christian AC. Its studio-recording pop-rock leanings make it a natural fit for radio, but its lyrical content make most of the songs strong candidates for inclusion in any Sunday worship service set.

There are three clear highlights on Where I Find You: the passionate album opener, Steady My Heart; the urgent call to ministry and missions, We Are (incidentally, the carrier single of this release), and the achingly beautiful Love Came Down, originally by Bethel Worship.

Listen to “Steady My Heart” by Kari Jobe
Steady My Heart will instantly win people with its easily memorable chorus, singalong verses, and likeable guitar work. Meanwhile, We Are, which scored Jobe her first Top 10 solo hit on the Christian AC chart. These two songs, which come one after the other, make for a solid one-two punch that both encourages and strengthens the listener.

Other noteworthy tracks on Where I Find You include Jobe’s latest radio track, the raw and emotional Find You On My Knees, a passionate declaration of faith at a person’s lowest point; the touching Savior’s Here, a soothing balm of encouragement that follows Find You On My Knees, and We Exalt Your Name, a duet with praise and worship leader Matt Maher (Your Grace is Enough) that is catchy and strong but unfortunately placed right after Love Came Down. The album closes with Here, a stripped down paean to a God Who has promised to always be with us – “here.”

Listen to “Find You On My Knees” by Kari Jobe
In a nutshell, Where I Find You is unmistakable proof that Kari Jobe is one of Contemporary Christian music’s brightest and most promising stars. Displaying an impressive level of songwriting maturity, thematic range, vocal artistry, and melodic quality, Where I Find You will impress and leave listeners breathless. We can only wait with bated breath – the breath we held earlier – to see how she plans to follow up this stunning release.

Listen to “We Are” by Kari Jobe

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