The Saint and the Sinner

A godless heathen gets down with J.C.

This is how it seems to go in this corner of the music world: People just keep helping one another out, and some of them get careers out of it. If Alicia gets her career, she'll deserve it.

Alicia's record, which you can get at CD Baby or KristineAlicia.com, was almost too good for this godless heathen to handle. Never on my sickest day do I want to dance around my living room for Jesus. The very notion fills me with dread and sets my head a-buzzing with nervous memories of catechism classes long and happily forgotten.

But faced with this music, it's hard not to reconsider. Not the cosmos, maybe — Get Ready is very much the choir preaching to the choir, and if you're not Seriously Godly to begin with, it won't have much to tell you — but it would be tragic if this music didn't reach beyond the circumscribed world of believers. There is joy on this disc, and yearning and hope and all the other things music folks like to look for when they're done stocking up on the latest ironic hipster poses. There's Russian/Arabic/break-beat swirls on the song "Praise Dance," rockish reggae on "Jehovah Jireh," wild island explosions on "We See You" — Alicia does everything but death metal, and she does it right.

Alicia will probably have her career whether we, the world's godless heathens, take notice or not. She stands to lose very little. Depending on how much importance you ascribe to the handful of powerful moments a good CD can supply, we stand to lose quite a lot.

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