Morse, Neal - Hope And A Future,
From Neal Morse: "As we all crowd around our televisions and read our news feeds concerning the ever-changing nature of the coronavirus, I am sensing a wave of hopelessness, fear and uncertainty unlike anything I can remember. Many times there have been extreme difficulties in regions or nations, but this is a trial for all humanity…and, as in any time of testing, many will fall into the depths of hopelessness. When hope disappears, all seems lost. But it’s not. So I have been thinking…what can I do? How can I help? I shared that feeling with the Radiant team and we came up with this idea: a free collection of Neal Morse songs titled ‘Hope and a Future’. I’ve tried to interject elements of hope in my music for as far back as I can remember, so we have made a special album of songs from my entire catalogue, accenting the uplifting and affirming, to help you navigate these unchartered waters with peace and blessed assurance. Effective immediately, you can download this collection of songs free of charge from the Radiant website. My deepest desire is that you will find something in these songs — a word, a phrase, a concept — that you can latch onto and will help you and your family through this season. Your download will also contain a document that we put together containing some great quotes regarding hope. In closing, let me encourage you with this. No matter the circumstances or how things appear, let “the love that never dies” fill your heart today and be the “wind at your back” that brings you to a “peaceful harbor” in the days ahead."
So there you have it, that is exactly what this album is about, and what it is intended for. Is it a perfect introduction to Neal’s work? Well, no to be honest. It is a thematic collection of songs as opposed to a “greatest hits” set, and unless you are a committed Christian there is a lot here which will probably wash over you. But that’s okay. There are some people who will find solace in this album, and that is the intended market. Me? I always enjoy Neal’s music, and although there are some here which I can happily pass over having played them a few times, there are also some gems in a demo version of “We All Need Some Light” and a superb live version of “Wind At My Back” from 2007. As a pure musical set, I will turn to many of his other releases before playing this one, but that is due to personal likes and dislikes as opposed to any lack of production or song quality. Get this album free at Neal’s site, https://nealmorse.com/2020/03/17/free-hope-sampler-released/