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Heaven in The Real World

4.8 out of 5 stars 40 customer reviews

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Audio CD, July 12, 1994
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Heaven In The Real World

Amazon.com

Throughout his career, Steven Curtis Chapman has tastefully combined his appreciation for down-home country with forward-sounding pop sensibilities. Add to the country and pop a bundle of opportunities for Chapman to flash his guitar wizardry, and you have his 1994 release Heaven in the Real World, one of the more pleasing Christian-music efforts of the decade. The light-hearted "King of the Jungle" and "Dancing with the Dinosaur" are balanced by the more serious and moving "Still Listening" and "Miracle of Mercy." The appealing title track rocks with an urgency that drives Chapman's divine message home. With the best yet to come (1996's Signs of Life), Chapman still stands tall with this quality recording. --Michael Lyttle
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 12, 1994)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sparrow Records
  • ASIN: B000005KX0
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #143,791 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Mark Baker - Carstairs Considers HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 19, 2015
Format: Audio CD
During the 1990's, Steven Curtis Chapman ruled Christian music. His songs were all over the airwaves. He won so many Dove Awards (the Christian version of the Grammy's) that people started joking about renaming them the Stevies. I was in college during this time, and I'll confess that I was as excited as everyone else when Heaven in the Real World, his 1994 release came out. And the music is still great today.

As was always the case back then, the track opens with the title anthem. Okay, technically, it opens with some people reading out depressing headlines that then is drowned out by a speech from Prison Fellowship founder Chuck Colson reminding us that our hope is not in government but in God. (Steven was a spokesman for Prison Fellowship at the time.) All of this takes maybe 45 seconds before Steven actually starts to sing. The lyrics on this song aren't that surprising after the quote. It's just a reminder that we can have peace through Jesus. This is an upbeat anthem; it does start off the disc after all. And it's still fun to listen to.

Steven seemed to be big on analogies with this disc as four of the biggest songs here were filled with them. "King of the Jungle" is an upbeat pop number with just a hint of jungle rhythm to it. As you'd probably guess from the title, the whole point of this song is that "What I need is to remember one thing/That the Lord of the gentle breeze is Lord of the rough and tumble/And He is the King of the jungle." While the song is dominated by electric guitar, there's a nice brass section at one point.

The early 90's were the heyday of Barney, and Steven's kids were the right age to love the big purple dinosaur.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
It came within the week I orderd it. The cover was broken but, If you look past that and listen to the music its not a big deal. His songs are fun to sing-a-long with, dance to and encoureging when your down!
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Format: Audio CD
I have to believe it's the fact that he has more control over his own sound, but Chapman sounds like he's really having fun making this album and that makes it another step up for him. For the first time, SCC joins with Phil Naish to produce and his voice sounds stronger and he takes more chances with it (and with the music for that matter, including his first genuine rock number).

HIGHLIGHTS:
The title tune kicks things off with its call for life change NOW...rather than in a future paradise. ("Where is the hope?/Where is the peace?/That will make this life complete/For every man, woman, boy and girl looking for/Heaven in the real world") Knowing Jesus personally, of course, offers that "real world" peace. A percussive track is the foundation for "King of the Jungle"..the jungle being the "rat race" of modern life. It's Chapman's reminder that "the Lord of the gentle breeze is Lord of the rough and tumble",too. "Dancing with the Dinosaur" celebrates the "old fogey" label placed on those of us who assert traditional morality. ("Right is right and wrong is wrong just like it has been all along....") "Treasure of You" is an electric guitar charged self-esteem boost. ("You are a treasure/Worth more than anything under the sun or the moon/God's greatest treasure/the treasure of you...") "Remember the Chains" urges believers to remember their sinful pasts in order to better appreciate their freedom in Christ. ("Remember your chains/Remember the prison that once held you/before the love of God broke through/Remember the place you were without grace/When you see where you are now, remember your chains and remember your chains are gone..") "Facts are Facts" isn't very deep lyrically (more or less God said it, I believe it, that settles it..) but it's a quality rock-edged rave-up.
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Format: Audio CD
SCC's creativity and love for God come through loud and clear on this album, (Like his others). It is very clear that SCC not only writes music for the sake of writing music, he definately writes it "For the Sake of the Call". His creative way of tackling life and the issues in the songs "Heaven in the Real World","Dancing with the Dinasour" and "King of the Jungle" while keeping Christ the center of it all, is great! I immediately fell in love with the songs,"Burn the Ships", "Rememer Your Chains", "Still Listening" and several others! "The Treasure of You" also seems to be one of Jay Bell's (the 2nd baseman for the AZ Diamondbacks) favorites, seeing that he played it as a theme song for one of his reviews at one of his home games! Though I wouldn't say SCC plays Christian country music, the song "The Mountain" does give you sort of a nice, warm, country feeling. I've got alot of CCM artists albums which I like. I also have alot of SCC's albums which I love! But if I had to choose my favorites, this one would have to be one of them!
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Format: Audio CD
At last, Chapman has progressed to the stage where I feel that he has thrown off most of his inhibitions and is really starting to have fun with his music. This album has a higher percentage of upbeat songs than previous releases, with an all-out celebration in tracks like Facts Are Facts and Treasure of You.

Of course, it wouldn't be a Steven Curtis Chapman album without a couple of moving slow songs as well. Offerings like The Mountain, Love and Learn and Remember Your Chains are much more than filler. There are no ordinary songs here - fast or slow, joyful or contemplative, each track is lyrically and musically strong, a pleasure to listen to again and again.

Larry Hehn, author of Get the Prize: Nine Keys for a Life of Victory
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