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The Basics of Life

17 customer reviews

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Audio CD, August 26, 1997
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$16.98 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 1 left in stock. Sold by Heritage Life Media and Fulfilled by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

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Editorial Reviews

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This album catapults a premier inspirational quartet into the contemporary Christian pop market. Hailed as a milestone in the group's career, it garnered them several honors including a Dove Award for Best New Artist of 1992. The "obvious-about-their-faith" approach that permeates 4Him's repertoire is intact here against a strong inspirational pop backdrop. They also tip their musical hat to 70's pop/rock icons with their "wall of sound" vocals. Featured are the title track (one of their most notable); another hit with a heavenly perspective, "Through His Eyes"; and "When It Comes To Livin'," a reminder of the important things in life. --Jerry Chamberlain


Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 26, 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Benson Records
  • ASIN: B0000005DK
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #76,941 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By scott_from_dallas on October 18, 2000
Format: Audio CD
4Him puts out such incredible music that even when one of their CDs is not up to par with their other CDs, its not a problem. This is my least favorite 4Him CD. Perhaps it is because Basics of Life was overplayed and I'm a little tired of it. Yes, the message is fantastic and I like it. But I do listen to the music for more than just the spiritual side and there is nothing wrong with that. I recommend the CD, but if you can only buy one, get 4Him, Face the Nation, The Ride, or The Message first.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 3, 1999
Format: Audio CD
This CD proves that 4Him is truly a group of blessed guys. Mark Harris has a tremendous gift in his ability to write songs that continuously move people to feel "spirit led." These guys are my favorite and they can do no wrong! Keep it up!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 22, 1999
Format: Audio CD
Another awesome album from the guys. Awesome CD, and well worth the money. This album also features the song of the same name which is probably their most famous song of all 'Basics of Life'.
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Format: Audio CD
When I really started getting into music and listening to the radio in high school, one group that quickly grabbed by ear was 4Him. This male quartet filled their pop/rock songs with harmonies, although I was mainly drawn to the fun style of their music. The first CD of theirs I bought was their 1992 release, The Basics of Life. It was only their third disc, but it's still the one I immediately think of when I think of them.

Now the first thing you should probably know about this disc is that it may have been released in 1992, but it's hard to tell at times. There is less reliance on synthesizers and drum machines, but you'll still hear plenty of that. It's amazing how I can tune it out; most of the time I don't even notice. But when I start to listen for it, I do hear it.

While this disc is the first to flash into my mind when I think about 4Him, there is a good reason for it (beside it being the first disc of theirs I bought.) "The Basics of Life" is probably their most recognized single. The title track is a mid-tempo anthem that encourages us to return to faith, hope, and love and stop letting the world intrude on what really matters in life. While you might think it's about materialism, it actually is talking more about moral living and philosophy distracting us from God. They tried to duplicate their success here many more times, but none ever quite took off like this one did.

The old 80's production are more evident in the next track. "When It Comes to Livin'" actually talks a bit more about getting caught up in the world around us instead of standing for God.

"Fountain of Youth" has to be one of the stranger songs in 4Him's musical resume.
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Format: Audio CD
In 1990, 4 Him released their self-titled debut album.
In 1991, the group released their sophomore album, "Face the Nation."
And in 1992, the group released their third album in as many years, "The Basics of Life."

Three albums in three years is a big undertaking for any group. However, the hard work of 4 Him would be rewarded in 1993 by the first of three consecutive Dove Awards for Group of the Year.

The songs on the album are:

"The Basics of Life" - A simple, light rock song that reminds us that we need to get back to the basics of what it is to be a Christian. This song still receives regular airplay on Christian radio. 4 Him is at their best when they harmonize, and this song definitely demonstrates their ability to do just that.

"When It Comes to Livin'" - A combination of ballad & soft rock that talks about living your life not for the world but for building up your faith.

"Fountain of Youth" - The fountain of youth and its legendary immortality may have escaped Ponce de Leon, but Christians have their own fountain of youth in Jesus Christ.

"This Time" - A ballad, this song is one of the weakest musically on the album. 4 Him is weakest when single solo ballads, and this song shows that weakness.

"Through His Eyes" - If we could only see through Jesus' eyes, we might have a better understanding of His love for us. Another solo ballad, this song does not contain the same weakness as "This Time."

"Built on Amazing Grace" - Yet another ballad. Although lacking musically, this song contains a great message about God's amazing grace in our lives.

"Freedom" - Finally the album gets back to what 4 Him does best: soft rock and harmonies.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Greg Brady on April 20, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Stacks of awards or not, this is musically pretty average. What you get here is 4 good (not great but competent) male singers that do lots of harmony to middle of the road AC pop and light rock. Occasionally they're given a really good lyric to work with (they don't write most of their own stuff) but most of it is oft-trod "Jesus loves you..He's the only way to live" stuff that has been heard zillions of times.

HIGHLIGHTS:
There are 3 tunes on here which break free of the pack. The title tune is a pretty good manifesto calling for an increased moral and spiritual renewal in America (without the extremes of say, Carman's "America Again"). ("We need to get back to the basics of life/A heart that is pure and a love that is blind/A faith that is fervently grounded in Christ/The hope that endures for all times..") "Through His Eyes" is a call for racial unity and the return to God of every man and woman on Earth. ("He desires to see the good/in each and every man/That He has purposed from the start..") "when it's Time to Go" speaks of the time that a child "leaves the nest" of home ("Say goodbye,cry some tears/but don't worry") and neatly dovetails it into Jesus' departure from the home of Mary and Joseph to dying for our salvation and in the end awaiting a reunion with them in Heaven. ("When I hit the City/I'll build you a house right down the street from Mine...") It's surefire singalong fare and a darn good lyric.

LOWS:
"Head Over Heels" is yet another 'Jesus is my boyfriend/girlfriend' lyric that gives Christian contemporary music a bad name in the music world at large.
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