Review Rating: Must Listen! [4.8 / 5]
Renowned musician TobyMac's latest album is personal. There's a tone of endurance that stands out from his past seven albums, a theme that acknowledges a battle between the world and the Savior. These songs have already become radio favorites, and with more surprises in store across the runtime, fans are guaranteed to enjoy every moment of the experience. The Elements is everything that listeners have come to love from TobyMac - unique sounds, motivating lyrics, and gospel-saturated themes - plus so much more.
Rushing wind, dramatic keyboard, and massive drums paint a picture of wilderness and savagery - appropriate for the title track of the album. Rising strings and keyboard build, silencing for a moment before bringing in thundering drums, electric guitar, and an accelerating beat. This cycle repeats throughout the song, representing the constant battles we face in this world. In the lyrics, Toby describes this world as a savage place fighting the influence of God Himself - boldly declaring his resolve to stand against temptation and stand for his Savior.
"I just need U" has become a popular radio hit due to its transparency and encouragement. Keyboard notes, soft chimes, subtle bass, and tambourine - amidst a myriad of Diverse City's favorite sounds - define the melody, creating a calm yet flowing atmosphere. Toby's lyrics are a prayer, directed towards God and expressing a need for Him alone. The song is a moving reminder that all we need to survive this world, the elements, is His presence.
Toby celebrates God's love with "Everything," an upbeat and motivating track that has become a fan favorite. Upbeat electronics and a steady beat drive the melody, gripping listeners along the way. Additional vocals create a large, joyful sound that drives the celebration all the further. Lyrics describe the presence of the Savior all around us. "I see You in everything all day, and every beat of my heart keeps reminding me!" Toby proclaims energetically across the chorus. "Everything" is easily one of the most fun and upbeat tracks on the record, putting listeners into a joyful mood almost immediately.
Towards the end of the collection is "Hello Future," a forward-looking track that ties the themes of the album together. Synthesized brass, electronic pings, and a driving drum machine compose its big and bold sound. Verses gently sound and bold choruses dominate with their massive presence. Toby sings the song as an introduction to a new day brought by Christ - a bright future filled with purpose and forgiveness and fulfillment. Despite the world's hardships and the harshness of the elements, "Hello Future" reminds listeners that every day is an opportunity to experience God's goodness all over again.
Without question, The Elements is sure to become a listener favorite. This is TobyMac at his best, driving each song with engaging lyrics, fresh sounds, and a passion for Christ that overlaps everything else. This is a collection that stands out amidst his discography. For long-time fans or new listeners alike, The Elements is certainly worth the listening.