Mission of One is the brain child of
Tennessee native Chris Dickens (vocals,
guitar and bass); Hostile to the Gospel
is the fourth release from him. Currently this 12 song album is pending release
and distribution through the Tate Music group. That being said this is an
independently recorded project.
This being my first exposure to Mission of One and I wasn’t quite sure what to expect. As I’ve listened to Hostile to the Gospel my initial impression is meat n potatoes hard rock with heavy metal overtones. No it’s not a Night at the Opera but it’s also not Crux of the Mosh either. Some have compared this release to late 80s Rez Band and that comparison is pretty valid on a musical level (I’d even include Stevie & The Saints).
While not strictly a blues based album there are plenty of non blues influences throughout. Hostile to the Gospel is not breaking new ground musically here, but there are plenty of enjoyable songs that should please any fan of 80’s based hard rock.
Dickens has assembled a nice little cadre of guest musicians who have participated in on this release. This listing is per track.
Crashing Down On You - David Franey (lead guitar), David England (drums)
Does Anybody Care - Jacob Veal (formerly of EDEN’S WAY/EOWYN on lead guitar), David England (drums)
Feed My Sheep - David Franey (lead guitar), Darren Dickens (drums)
Give In To Him - David Franey (lead guitar), Darren Dickens (drums)
Gloryland - David Franey (lead guitar), Darren Dickens (drums)
Hostile To The Gospel - David Franey (lead guitar), Darren Dickens (drums)
I Know - JD Evans (of LETTER 7 on lead guitar), Darren Dickens (drums)
No Other- David Franey (lead guitar), Darren Dickens (drums)
Prodigal - Kevin Hasselquist (of SARDIS on lead guitar), Darren Dickens (drums)
Someone Save Me - JD Evans (lead guitar), Darren Dickens (drums)
The Third Door - Kevin Hasselquist (lead guitar), Darren Dickens (drums)
Walk On Water - Brad Windlan (Pastor Brad on lead guitar), David England (drums)
The production element will probably be a stumbling block for those used to a super glossy hard rock sound. The guitar is plenty strong but at times the drums will disappear amidst the bass and rhythm guitars. If you realize this is more of a demo in sound quality, with an underground feel that should help you gauge your expectations.
Lyrically make no mistake this is an evangelistic album, with bold proclamations about the gospel of Jesus Christ. That is something Dickens has emphasized in many of his online postings about this release. If you have a hard time with Christian bands not sounding ‘Christian’ enough that shouldn’t be a problem here.
One thing that held me back on this review was that I received the songs out of sequence and thanks to Andrew Rockwell posting the correct sequence, the album is a thousand times better in the right sequence. (it should be noted that this had no relation to the Axe quota I gave it!)
Mission of One’s Hostile to the Gospel is straight ahead hard rock with metal overtones. I was a little disappointed with the production elements but musically there should be plenty here for most fans of Rez and other 80s hard rock/metal bands to enjoy.