The same year as I am a Stranger In This Place, the Violets released the worship album Faith and Devotions of a Satellite Heart. Musically, it is in much the same vein as IAaSITP. The lyrics, are about as close to “traditional Christian lyrics” as the band gets.
I would liken many of the songs to the Psalms, as they slide between admission of one’s weakness and failings and God as amazing and almost too much to comprehend. A vast and expansive sea of a God who is, at the same time supportive and attentive to His creation. Standout tracks for me were Fortyweight, Clean and Beautiful. However, the entire disc is strong and one of the only praise and worship CDs I own.
2003’s This is The Moment is easily the closest thing the band has produced to a pop music album. I don’t mean it sounds like Britney Spears or something…but the songs tend to be more radio friendly in length (no ten minute songs). The band devotes most of the songs to humankind’s relationship to God (they released a collection of love songs and the like under the name The Gravity Show the same year). As in the past, the songs present a broken and wounded perspective aspiring to hope. Songs like Heaven Holds My Heart, Everywhere I Go and Lost Without You Near Me approach God with child-like wonder and hope. It is strong album,though unique in the band’s career.
2006’s Drop Dead brought together Pritzls musical explorations into a package that reminds me distinctly of Echo and the Bunnymen. It’s an 80’s alt vibe that still felt distinctly fresh and moving. Standout tracks include Humm, More and the rock song Do You Love Me. But I consider it yet another strong album all the way through.
And now, in 2011, Pritzl and company have brought us not one CD, but a three CD collection of all new material. Right from the packaging, it feels epic. Instead of a Jewel case, it is a foldout package about the size of a DVD box. There is an 80 page booklet (yeah, 80 pages) of paintings, photos and lyrics. It is terrific looking. The 34 brand new songs are split among Th3 Fantast1c Mach1n3, Black as Death and Liebe über allies.
The music draws on the entire history of the Violets,