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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon October 3, 2012
After receiving over 10,000 personal stories from all over the globe for his heralded 2010 album, The Story of Your Life, Matthew West, who has been forever impacted by the outpouring of stories, felt as though there was even more for others to say during this season of his music. The new studio album, Into The Light, features 12 tracks inspired by 10,000 new letters submitted after West invited people to, once again, send him their stories. The songs comprising Into The Light were inspired by stories touching on everything from the power of forgiveness, drug addiction, the rejection of apathy, domestic violence and many other topics.

The stories gave Matthew a window into what his fans had experienced in their lives. And they covered a wide range of human experiences and emotions. "Into The Light" perhaps serves as a capstone to the entire album, describing a woman who escaped an abusive situation and the journey out of the darkness that held her prisoner for so long with these poignant lyrics reflecting the freedom we have in Christ-- "No more, no more living in the shadows now / Step into the light." Following the great trend already established by Matthew West of completely transparent and vulnerable lyrics, "Hello My Name Is" addresses the truth of how our identities are too often shaped by the world and as believers we are set free as he proclaims in these lyrics inspired by a young man named Jordan: "These are the voices, these are the lies / And I have believed them, for the very last time / Hello, my name is child of the one true King / I've been saved, I've been changed, and I have been set free / "Amazing Grace" is the song I sing / Hello, my name is child of the one true King."

The powerful lead single "Forgiveness" chronicles a mother dealing with the death of her daughter at the hands of a drunk driver. The song displays how much God wants us to dispose our hearts to forgive each other. This is not enough, we must seek the welfare even of those who offend us. Let us seek more and more for the renewing grace of God, to teach us to forgive others as we hope for forgiveness from Him. As the song beautifully states, "I want to finally set it free, So show me how to see what Your mercy sees, Help me now to give what You gave to me, Forgiveness, Forgiveness." Amen to that! Another of the album's strongest tunes is "Moved by Mercy," which West wrote about a young woman named Krystal who was a victim of abuse and neglect as a child. As an adult she found her way to Mercy Ministries, a shelter for women and she realized that God had not abandoned her. He had protected her and is working in her life. The female vocalist in the song is Caitlin Evanson and her powerful vocals gorgeously proclaim the beautiful refrain--"Take me far away now / From this broken place now / Somewhere they can't hurt me / I wanna be moved by mercy / Jesus, I can't see You / I just know I need You / / Help me start a new life / Let my heart be moved by mercy."

From "More," "You Are Everything" and "The Motions" to "Strong Enough" and "Forgiveness," I continue to hear a progression musically and lyrically from Matthew West. Into The Light is yet another solid album from one of Christian music's most prolific singer-songwriters. Certainly "Into The Light, "Hello My Name Is," "Forgiveness" and "Moved by Mercy" will all get heavy radio airplay and deserve recognition. Those songs all have very strong messages and are all catchy and uplifting. "Forgiveness" is my selection for Song of the Year. If you want to be challenged, moved, and step "into the light" with songs inspired by real life stories, then don't miss this album. Several of these songs are instant classics and for sure, West will be considered for Pop/Contemporary Album, Artist, and Male Vocalist of the Year.
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on February 15, 2013
Matthew West has a gift of taking someone else's story and turning it into everyone's story. I'm thankful that he's chosen to embrace this gift and let God touch people through his music.

I received this CD at Christmas and hadn't played it for a couple of weeks because the first song released, "Forgiveness" was on a heavy rotation on the station we listen to.

Forgiveness is a great song, well deserved of being played. And once I finally listened through the rest of the album I realized it was one of many!

A lot of people in these reviews have mentioned "Moved by Mercy". It would have been a terrific song anyway, but his design of having Caitlin Evanson take over the chorus is inspired.

"Hello My Name Is" is the one I find myself gravitating to. It's about taking hold of the promise from God and not letting your past define you.

Honestly, I could go on about every song in no particular order. I've started playing it in shuffle mode and whenever the next song comes on I think - Oh this is "The Power of a Prayer" or "Love Stands Waiting" or " Do Something" or "Wonderfully Made" or whichever one is playing...and I'm uplifted.

When you play this CD make sure to listen for the bonus cut of his daughters singing after the last song - just like his previous album. They are silly, funny, and sweet.

To wrap it up, I believe this is an absolutely terrific album by Matthew West. I pray for continue blessings for his ministry.
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on June 1, 2013
I love this new album by Matt. Blasting it in my car everyday and I had the pleasure of meeting Matt and his family at a Women of Faith conference. He is so down to earth and the history behind the songs on this album is awesome. Matt decided that he wanted his fans to send him letters about issues in their lives and then he wrote these songs based on those letters. You will never regret buying this album.
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on June 3, 2013
The whole album is awesome. I love every song. It waken my spirit listening to it as every song touches my heart. I think
this is Matthew West's best album. I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys Christian music.
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on October 11, 2012
Matthew West has done it again. He's captivated stories of his fans and penned them into beautiful melodies and lyrics. He's one of the best story tellers and song writers of my generation. Well done, Matthew. Well done.
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on June 6, 2013
One of the most amazing CDs he has ever made.Forgiveness is amazing!

I recommend that every household get one of these.
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on June 5, 2013
This CD has a great variety of songs for the Christian believer. I saw him at Women of Faith in Las Vegas, NV and have heard him on SOS Radio, he is a delightful singer for lifting our spirits to our heavenly father. Thanks Amazon for having this available.
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on June 6, 2013
I saw Matthew here in town and regretted not picking up the CD for the Into the Light Tour. Was so happy to see it here on Amazon and it is just wonderful. He is so talented and lives what he sings. Love it!
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on May 22, 2013
I bought this CD for the song, 'Hello My Name is' but have enjoyed all the songs. Matthew tells positive, throught provoking stories in his songs so good substance here. I also really like the song 'Forgiveness'. I listen to Hello My Name is every day as it is my 'pump up' song before work. Great CD!
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on January 12, 2014
What a gift from God. M.W. truly knows how to write music and God has blessed him. I listen to this cd constantly. Just can't get enough. I call "hello my name is" my Batter up song. Like when you go to a Ball game and each batter has his own song that they play when he is up to bat. If girls played MLB that would be my song.
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