Don't let the drums and guitars fool you. While their website urges they are "emerging as one of today's top modern rock groups," The Kry is a praise band, producing the kind of edgeless, message-oriented electric guitar played at contemporary worship services.

French Canadian brothers Jean Luc (vocals/bass) and Yves Lajoie (drums) moved to the States and eventually hooked up with American Pete Nelson (guitar) to play in a youth group band. A demo project eventually turned into a record label agreement and the Kry was born. "Let Me Say" is their fourth release in four years.

These third generation Beatles fans, first generation Jars of Clay fans, make chord patterns sound at times mildly tolerable, at times used-up. Their basic strategy seems to be to jangle out guitar parts to fit the words. Aside from "The Law of Love," a catchy tune with plucky harmonies that will surely see rotation on Christian radio, this album, if ever a group sounded like a "typical Christian rock band" it is The Kry.

Ouch. How did "typical Christian rock band" become such an unfavorable stereotype? Too many Christian songwriters think they are getting to the heart of the matter with unconnected statements about God. They are mistaken. We live and communicate through art by story. Abstract statements, even about the Almighty, don't mean a thing unless grounded in a narrative.

The Kry's propensity for "Jesus lyrics" doesn't help. There just is nothing profound about the way The Kry represents the profound; heavy on punchlines, thin on plot. I feel like my creative-writing teacher, saying "show don't tell." But there is a reason bad poetry is bad. Don't tell people God is love. Show them in a way that impacts their world.

But the truth is, for the most part, it doesn't matter. The Kry may sell a million albums on the strength of the final track: "Cassie's Song."

Hold hands, sway and cry in your pew. It's the last night at camp all over again. High on melodrama, the song in part takes it's words from a poem Cassie Bernall wrote two days before she was gunned down in the library at Columbine High School, for reportedly answering "Yes" to whether she believed in God. The truth of the incident has been questioned in recent months, but Cassie has already permanently been paraded as a hero by Christians around the world, and the song will no doubt add to her legacy.

"Ask me if I believe in God and I'll say
Yes, with all of my heart
And I'll tell you I do
With the last breath I take
That He is the one I belong to."

The song is The Kry's attempt, one supposes, at impacting their world--but it's a world of junior-high youth groups and Christian rallies. If The Kry plan on playing outside of church basements, they are going to have a tough go of it.

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