All at Once by Phil Keaggy

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After over 40 years of making albums, Christian music’s most noteworthy guitarist, Phil Keaggy, has produced one of the finest of his career. All at Once shows that the singer and player who produced blues-pop albums like Love Broke Thru in the 70s and Crimson and Blue in the 90s can still craft songs that communicate his faith, the love he has for his family, and his mastery of the electric guitar.

The opening tracks “Mercy” and “Undertow” kick off the album with high-octane guitar work and set the stage for an album that has a number of fine, blues-based pop songs. “Stay Home Baby” is a straight ahead, up-tempo blues piece that gives Keaggy the chance to trade licks with legendary organ player Al Kooper while singing about how much he enjoys being at home with his wife. It’s hard to pick one highlight but it might just be “Ezekiel”—a song set in the valley of dry bones—which has Keaggy sharing vocal duties with Ashley Cleveland, a combination that works extremely well.

For those of us who have been following Keaggy’s career for decades, it is great to see him hit one out of the park once again with All at Once.

About the Author

Robert J. Keeley is professor of education at Calvin College and director of distance learning at Calvin Seminary.