The Greatest Christian Albums of the 2010s

The Greatest Christian Albums of the 2010s

The Greatest Christian Albums of the 2010s

What have been the most effective Christian music albums launched within the 2010s? I posed this query to a number of dozen Christian musicians, writers, critics, and music lovers a couple of months in the past. I requested them to appoint albums they felt have been each theologically and artistically wealthy; albums of any style that have been clearly, unapologetically Christian; albums that pushed Christian music ahead within the final decade, redefining what it might be. From their nominations and my very own, I compiled the record beneath.

Actually there have been many different nice Christian albums launched over the past 10 years, and many who comprise wealthy theological themes however wouldn’t fairly match the “Christian album” label (e.g., Probability the Rapper’s Coloring E book or Sufjan Stevens’s Carrie and Lowell). Any record of 25 albums from the span of a decade essentially solely scratches the floor. This record is in no way exhaustive or definitive. It’s merely a grateful celebration of the gorgeous artistry, range, and devotion on show in Christ-exalting music this final decade. 

This record is in no way exhaustive or definitive. It’s merely a grateful celebration of the gorgeous artistry, range, and devotion on show in Christ-exalting music this final decade.

The record consists of acquainted and unfamiliar names, new artists this decade and veterans who preserve churning out distinctive work. The descriptions beneath—contributed by 11 Christian music makers, critics, or appreciators—embrace alternatives of 4 standout tracks for every listed album. All of the songs are compiled in a 100-song playlist on Spotify and Apple Music.

Benefit from the songs and reward God for the maturing inventive excellence of up to date Christian music over the past decade. Could the 2020s deliver a good better array of recent high quality artists and masterful albums.

1. Josh Garrells, Love and Battle and the Sea In Between (2011)

Embracing the neo-folk motion of the early 2010s whereas injecting his songs with elaborately crafted soundscapes, hypnotic hip-hop beats, and deep theological truths, Josh Garrels took the Christian music scene by storm along with his sixth file. An album made potential by early crowdsourcing, Garrels gave your complete work away totally free on Noisetrade in 2013, with any “tips” going to World Reduction. The publicity led to the documentary The Sea in Between and interviews with NPR and Huffington Put up. Standout tracks: “Farther Along,” “Slip Away,” “The Resistance,” “Bread & Wine.” (iTunes | Amazon

— Chris Davidson

2. Sandra McCracken, Psalms (2015)

Together with her distinct people voice, Sandra McCracken created an album of clear songs in each sound and material. The album invitations us right into a journey of lament, craving, and reward. On this, McCracken is doing nothing new traditionally. But this album fantastically represents the total vary of the human expertise in a approach solely the Psalms can. Standout tracks: “We Will Feast in the House of Zion,” “My Help, My God (Psalm 42),” “Sweet Comfort,” “Have Mercy.” (iTunes | Amazon

— Tim Briggs

3. Andrew Peterson, Counting Stars (2010)

Crisp, melodic sounds, mixed with fantastically clear and poetic lyricism, made Counting Stars a memorable and enduring album within the 2010s. Andrew Peterson weaves vulnerability, hope, vivid imagery, and evocative worship all through the album’s songs, together with the traditional “Dancing in the Minefields,” a tune in regards to the hardships of marriage but in addition the fantastic thing about God’s guarantees that meet us within the chaos, the storms, the minefields of life. Different standout tracks: “Many Roads,” “World Traveler,” and “Planting Trees.” (iTunes | Amazon

— Antoine Bradford

4. John Van Deusen, Each Energy Wide Awake (2017)

At occasions similar to a noisier Sufjan Stevens, John Van Deusen’s totally authentic file shouldn’t be your typical “worship” album. With songs that really feel like psalms (“All Shall Be Well”), confessions (“Be Merciful to Me”), childlike reward (“No Limit to Your Love”), and a title observe that packs an 11-minute emotional wallop, EPWA leaves the listener in utter awe earlier than God. In the phrases of Van Deusen himself: “So, here is this album; full of songs: some loud, some quiet. Often hectic and immature; just like my prayers in the morning.” Standout tracks: “All Shall Be Well,” “None Other,” “Every Power Wide Awake,” “Be Merciful to Me.” (iTunes | Amazon

Tenielle Neda

5. Liz Vice, There’s a Mild (2015)

Soul singer Liz Vice serves up some retro magic on this debut album, which is Gospel with a bit little bit of R&B and ’60s-style funk. All however two songs have been written for her by her pastor, Josh White, who was impressed by her wealthy, super-passionate voice—one which has earned her comparability to Aretha Franklin. “All of these songs are prayers—every single one,” Vice stated. Standout tracks: “There’s a Light,” “Abide,” “Empty Me Out,” “All Must Be Well.” (iTunes | Amazon

— Victoria Emily Jones

6. Rivers & Robots, All Issues New (2014)

Rivers & Robots stay out all that it means to be indie worshippers. As self-proclaimed “inventive missionaries,” they maintain quick to their core worth of utilizing 100 % of their income for missions work. This album captures their coronary heart for exalting Christ in inventive and expressive methods. It has an harmless allure to it, uniquely British in sound, but the musical maturity of a band assured in pushing the expectations of company worship. Standout tracks: “We Have Overcome,” “Fall Down,” “Shepherd Of My Soul,” “Voice That Stills the Raging Seas.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Stephen Bradley 

7. Sho Baraka, The Narrative (2016)

The very best albums reward repeated listens, continuously revealing new layers of that means or magnificence. Such is the case with Sho Baraka’s The Narrative. United by Sho’s pure reward of efficiency, the album spans numerous hip-hop types, themes, and tones. Laid-back jazz, lure, and weary piano melodies play beneath Sho’s confessional rhymes, punch traces, and energetic choruses. Maybe essentially the most pleasing high quality of The Narrative comes from Sho’s unapologetic iconoclasm. Irrespective of the topic (religion, fathering, race, politics), Sho wittily challenges simplistic pondering. Standout tracks: “Here, 2016,” “Road to Humble, 1979,” “Words, 2006,” “Fathers, 2004.” (iTunes | Amazon

— Alan Noble

8. Kings Kaleidoscope, Changing into Who We Are (2014)

Most definitely your favourite artists’ favourite artist, Kings Kaleidoscope provided a glimpse of their inventive future on this eclectic, wild, “more is more” debut. Influenced by indie rock noises, hip-hop samples, orchestral compositions, and Disney-style musical surprise, frontman Chad Gardner crafts his songs with emotional vulnerability and the kind of inventive intricacy that takes the work of many trusted associates to tug collectively. The result’s a worship album that performs like a victorious, kingdom-bringing anthem. Standout tracks:  “I Know,” “139,” “Fix My Eyes,” “Defender.” (iTunes | Amazon

Stephen Bradley 

9. The Porter’s Gate, Work Songs (2017)

The Porter’s Gate debut is a visionary endeavor, bringing collectively quite a lot of artists (Josh Garrels, Liz Vice, Audrey Assad, Aaron Keyes, Madison Cunningham, and plenty of extra) to construct up the church for the six days of the week past Sunday. Whereas Works Songs has a stripped-down really feel (there are not any drums), there’s an amazing sense of energy evident as every observe was recorded stay in a single take. Standout tracks: “Little Things With Great Love,” “Wood and Nails,” “We Labor Unto Glory,” “Establish the Work of Our Hands.” (iTunes | Amazon

— Tyler Braun

10. Strahan, Posters (2012)

At occasions evoking Bob Dylan, Fleet Foxes, or Christian people pioneers like Love Tune, New Zealand’s Strahan Coleman strums his technique to quiet transcendence in his beautiful 2012 debut album. The songs are sometimes hushed and minimalist—making a stripped-down atmosphere the place the fantastic thing about the lyrics and melodies, constructed on a Psalms-like spectrum of emotion, actually shine. If David had a harmonica and a 12-string guitar, he would possibly write songs like these. Standout tracks: “Deliverance,” “Vineyard,” “Hey New Wine!” “You’re the Dawn.” (iTunes | Amazon

— Brett McCracken

11. The Grey Havens, Ghost of a King (2016)

The Grey Havens are a narrative-pop-folk duo identified for catchy melodies, insightful songwriting, and complex instrumentation. Ghost of a King was a welcome addition to the Christian music sphere, including a novel mix of depth, magnificence, and excellence in each sound and writing. Their 2018 album She Waits presents extra of the identical. Standout tracks: “Ghost of a King,” “Band of Gold,” “Diamonds and Gold,” “This My Soul.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Tim Briggs

12. CityAlight, Yours Alone (2015)

Primarily based at Sydney’s St. Paul’s Fortress Hill, Australia’s CityAlight emerged within the 2010s as one of many decade’s most refreshing new worship bands. Combining theologically wealthy lyrics with uptempo, joy-filled, emotionally rousing music, CityAlight’s songs are stunning and singable anthems readymade for congregational worship. Along with this stellar debut album, don’t miss their 2016 album, Solely a Holy God, and 2018 EP, But Not I. Standout tracks: “Jerusalem,” “Home,” “The Love of the Father,” “Yours Alone.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Brett McCracken

13. Lecrae, Anomaly (2014)

Lecrae has lengthy dominated the Christian hip-hop scene, and with Anomaly he additionally conquered the secular charts, turning into the primary artist to debut atop each the Billboard 200 and High Gospel Albums charts. His lyrical prowess is on full show on Anomaly, as he tackles the challenges any Christian—or any human—faces in on a regular basis life. Via his intricate wordplay, he captures the sensation of being an outsider as a Christian within the music trade and the world. Standout tracks: “Welcome to America,” “Nuthin,” “All I Need is You,” “Good, Bad, Ugly.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Eugene Park

14. Psallos, Hebrews (2017)

This adaptation of Hebrews for people rock band and chamber orchestra reveals the unbelievable versatility of the composer, Cody Curtis, and the musicians, who transfer by means of the ebook’s numerous moods and themes in types that vary from bluegrass and Irish dance to scorching jazz and gradual hip-hop. Recurring musical motives and reprises type a connective tissue all through. Psallos excels at creating artistically wonderful music that illuminates the intricate fantastic thing about Scripture. Standout tracks: “Ex Paradiso,” “The Old,” “The New,” “Two Mountains.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Victoria Emily Jones

15. Lovely Eulogy, Worthy (2017)

Lovely Eulogy’s third album looks like an inventive and non secular maturation for a bunch whose fashion has been referred to as “hip-hop worship.” As its identify would recommend, Worthy basks within the glory of God in a heart-pumping, full-throttle approach. Drawing from a various musical palate and a powerful array of friends (Residents, King’s Kaleidoscope, Aaron Strumpel, and so forth) the album channels a loopy quantity of Godward vitality into an expertise Owen Strachan referred to asone of the vital elegant, highly effective, faith-building albums I’ve heard.” Standout tracks: “If,” “Sovereign,” “Messiah,” “Doxology.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Brett McCracken

16. Journey Lee, The Good Life (2012)

Among the best Christian rappers of the 2010s, Journey Lee has launched a number of wonderful albums within the final decade. However with its exact lyrical theology, dialed-in manufacturing, spectacular guestlist (Sho Baraka, Jimmy Needham, KB, Lecrae, Andy Mineo and extra), and joyfully subversive themes, The Good Life stands out. The album represents a milestone in a decade when Christian hip hop continued to mature, turning into a go-to style for exposing audiences to Scripture and doctrine. Standout tracks: “I’m Good,” “One Sixteen,” “Take Me There,” “For My Good.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Brett McCracken

17. Greg LaFollette, Songs of Widespread Prayer (2018)

The E book of Widespread Prayer is a set of prayers, orders, and readings that has served the church nicely for hundreds of years. On this album, Greg LaFollette places the BCP to tune. The album accommodates historic phrases and practices and pairs them fantastically with recent music and singable melodies. On this work, LaFollette has created an unusual mixing of the traditional and fashionable. Standout tracks: “Most Merciful God,” “Mystery of Faith,” “Hosanna in the Highest,” “We Cry Mercy.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Tim Briggs

18. Aaron Strumpel, Mighty Refuge (2018)

Aaron Strumpel has been a noteworthy, avant-garde, impartial worship musician because the early 2000s, and I’m at all times intrigued by what he creates. True to type, his assortment of up to date hymns on Mighty Refuge is at occasions musically daring (even jarring), however at different occasions radically easy, foregrounding the acquainted melodies and devotional tones of beloved hymns (from “Be Thou My Vision” to “Just as I Am”). Standout tracks: “My Hope Is Built (On You Alone),” “Spark My Heart,” “Just as I Am (You Can Have All of Me),” “How Great Thou Art (Fresh Cut Flowers).” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Brett McCracken

19. Residents, Residents (2013)

Rooted within the theological richness of the hymns that impressed the band’s inception and the musical heritage of their hometown, Seattle, Residents created this loud, joyful, and triumphant debut file. Six years on, it nonetheless feels recent. It’s an album—full of impassioned shouts of the gospel, heavy guitars, and playful riffs—that has you nudging the quantity ever increased as you yell alongside from beginning to finish. Standout tracks: “In Tenderness,” “Made Alive,” “I Am Living In A Land Of Death,” “Oh God.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Stephen Bradley

20. Caroline Cobb, A Dwelling and a Starvation (2017)

One of many welcome developments of Christian music within the 2010s was a variety of nice artists writing songs that roughly pull immediately from Scripture. Singer-songwriter Caroline Cobb’s A Dwelling and a Starvation is a very pretty instance. The album journeys from Genesis to Revelation and—just like the Bible itself—alternates typically between wrestle and hope, restlessness and relaxation, starvation and residential. Standout tracks: “Fullness of Joy (Psalm 16),” “Emmanuel (Every Promise Yes in Him),” “Only the Sick Need a Physician,” “There Is a Mountain.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Brett McCracken

21. Poor Bishop Hooper, Overseas Made (2014)

Married couple Jesse and Leah Roberts are Poor Bishop Hooper, a two-piece indie-folk band based mostly in Kansas Metropolis. Equal elements energetic and contemplative, the songs on their debut album are constructed round an acoustic guitar and upright bass, with many based mostly on the lesser-sung parables from Matthew’s Gospel. Numerous voices—that of Jesus, the disciples, parable characters, Zebedee, a wounded saint—are deftly interwoven, making a multifaceted image of the Christian life. Standout tracks: “Treasure,” “Saints,” “Lamplight,” “Final Fire.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Victoria Emily Jones

22. Jess Ray, Sentimental Creatures (2015)

Among the best Christian singer-songwriters to emerge this decade was Jess Ray, and her 2015 debut “friendly folk” album is attractive in each approach. The North Carolina artist writes songs that really feel like quiet embers from a Smoky Mountain campfire, with lyrics that affirm God’s love and gospel reality. That is an album for wet days, depleted souls, and runaways of each kind. Let it sing over you. Standout tracks: “Runaway,” “Too Good,” “In the Meantime,” “Headed for the Hills.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Brett McCracken

23. Shai Linne, The Attributes of God (2011)

Within the traditional phrases of A. W. Tozer, “What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.” Eight years in the past, hip-hop artist Shai Linne dropped a complete file dedicated to serving to us assume increased ideas about our most holy God. Shai would be the most gifted Christian lyricist I’ve ever heard. For deep pedagogy and hovering doxology—a soundtrack to your theological journey—look no additional than The Attributes of God. Every tune celebrates a unique side of our Lord’s multifaceted character. Standout tracks: “Our God Is in the Heavens,” “The Glory of God (Not to Us),” “Taste and See,” “Judge of All the Earth.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Matt Smethurst

24. John Mark McMillan, The Medication (2010)

Whereas many know of this album due to the tune “How He Loves,” this debut launch from John Mark McMillan represents a brand new commonplace for a way an artist can write singable songs for the church whereas nonetheless embracing their distinctive artistry. Having launched many different albums since, The Medication stands out as establishing McMillan as an artist others look to as a voice of heartfelt honesty and worshipful reverence. Standout tracks: “Death In His Grave,” “Carbon Ribs,” “Skeleton Bones,” “Reckoning Day.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Tyler Braun

25. Younger Oceans, I Should Discover You (2014)

Brooklyn’s Younger Oceans was probably the greatest issues to occur to worship music within the 2010s. Minimalist, atmospheric, Brian Eno-esque in sound, the band (affiliated with New York’s Trinity Grace Church) creates beautiful sacred music through layers of distortion and gradual burn reverb epics. In some way sounding each historic and futuristic, their sophomore album pushed the style ahead considerably, displaying that worship music will be concurrently trustworthy and daring. Standout tracks: “Lead Me,” “Only You,” “Until These Tears Are Gone,” “Praise the Lord, Ye Heavens.” (iTunes | Amazon)

— Brett McCracken

The Greatest Christian Albums of the 2010s

Get involved!

Get Connected!

Come and join our community. Expand your network and get to know new people!


No comments yet