From the category archives:



A Best Live Show Nominee in the 2006-2011 Awards


The band known as Disciple has been rocking strong for over 20 years— and today they’re stronger than ever. And with their quality Hard Rock music style and great live shows, that’s no surprise!

Disciple - Bassist Israel Beachy Disciple - Guitarists Micah Sannan and Andrew Welch
Disciple - Frontman Kevin Young

(Photo Credits: Ember)

Live Show Rating (Short/Medium Set): 5 & 1/3 Stars. 5 & 1/3 Stars
Live Show Rating (Long Set): 5 & 1/2 Stars. 5 & 1/2 Stars


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This Might Sting A Little

A Best Third Release Nominee in the 2005 Awards


Lyrically bold and both vocally and musically raw, This Might Sting A Little is a heavy-hitting Hard Rock album that, once started, doesn’t stop for a moment. And this is evidenced immediately by the excellent, fan-favorite opening track “I Just Know”.

The next track “Golden Calf” features rhythmic verses. Also, at the end it only appears to be finished; they tease you a little by starting and stopping the music several times.

“Big Bad Wolf”— another fan favorite— contains Raprock verses; a rhythmic chorus; and pace changes that, along with the heavy music, make this one of the best tracks on this (really all-great) album.

“1, 2, Conductor” has a bass/guitar line that pulls you in.

“Mud Puddle” is the first track to start off slow, and indeed its verses are all so; but it contains medium-heavy guitars during the bridges and chorus. Lyrically, it deals with forgiveness.

“Worship Conspiracy” begins muted, then gets back to the heavy Hard Rock.

“10 Minute Oil Change” has metaphorical lyrics and music that kicks in with an incredible fast-and-heavy-chugging bass/guitar line, which continues in various ways throughout the song. That this huge wall of sound (on this track and on the whole album) can come from just three people playing one instrument each is absolutely amazing.

“Turmoil” has more of a spoken-word feel to the vocals throughout the verses, with a rhythmic bridge and a mostly-screamed chorus; and, of course, this track has great music.

“Hello” is a quite energetic track, especially towards the end.

“Bring The Heat” begins with only the vocals, drums, and bass, the guitars kicking in a few seconds later. This track is fairly energetic also, especially in the chorus.

“Bernie’s Situation” opens with several screams, but overall it’s a slightly slower, dark, and lyrically-warning track.

“Underneath” starts off with a neat little jazzy guitar riff, which then quickly morphs into a perfectly accelerating line.

And in the final track “Furthermore”— yet another fan fave— the powerful lyrics are alternately spoken, yelled, and screamed, all of it punctuated by simply great heavy music. There is also a hidden track attached to the end.

In all, This Might Sting A Little is an excellent third release, and we definitely recommend it.

Our rating for This Might Sting A Little: 5 & 1/3 Stars. 5 & 1/3 Stars


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By God

A Best Fourth Release Nominee in the 2005 Awards


By God opens with its fan-favorite title track, which humorously begins with the bandmembers shouting “Yee-haw!”, but then wastes no time diving into the heavy Hard Rock. The lyrics are as great as ever, and musically this track contains a neat pace change between the verses and the chorus.

“Not Rock Stars” is another excellent heavy track that firmly declares what Disciple is all about.

“God Of Elijah”, a solid fan favorite, is yet another excellent, rocking track that is just plain cool in all ways.

“Knocked Down” tones it down just slightly (to medium-heavy) until near the end. Its lyrics deal with recognizing our own mistakes and forgiving others’.

While its bridges are softer, most of the next track “Blow The House Down” brings the heaviness back fully.

“Coal” has a medium pace, and is interestingly half-heavy (during the bridges and chorus), half-not (during the verses). It also has a great bass/guitar line in the heavy bits.

“Can’t Breathe” slows the pace somewhat, and it’s actually the chorus that is softer (the verses and the bridge are still heavy).

“Salt Lamp”, though, brings the pace and the full Hard Rock heaviness right back up again.

“You Are Here” begins muted and almost suspenseful, then kicks into heavy verses, heavily rhythmic bridges, and a medium-heavy chorus.

“Thousand Things” is the first of two ballads on the album, and it’s a great one. Its verses are soft, and its chorus and final bridge are full regular Rock, with the music building in steps; and Kevin’s vocals are excellent.

“99”, of course, does get back to the Hard Rock. It also has some interesting vocals and melodies in the chorus.

“Whiny Britches” pulls the energy level up another notch with a great, rhythmic, fast Raprock chorus.

“You Rock My Socks Off” (featuring DJ Double K) actually opens with a little surprise record-scratching by the guest DJ. While indeed an unusual feature for a Disciple song, it mixes with the heavy Hard Rock quite well. This is yet another great track.

“Hate Your Guts” is another rhythmic, Raprock-type track, with (again) great heavy music, including a few quick pace changes during the long, rocking instrumental bridge.

“Whether They Like It Or Not” is a rhythmic track with several pace changes that make you pay attention. It’s an excellent, completely serious track right until the end… where they then send shout-outs to a large number of fellow bands (and even some radio stations) around at the time.

“Not Since Breakfast” is yet another great track, energetic and heavy.

In “Sick And Tired Of Being Sick And Tired”, a synchronized bass/guitar/drum line is featured throughout, and in the chorus the vocals sync with it also.

“But Wait There’s More” (featuring Evelyn J. Jack), by way of both metaphor and plain speaking, lyrically calls everyone (including musicians) to be completely real. Guest Evelyn J. Jack’s background vocalizations provide a neat contrast to everything else, and there’s a great lead guitar solo, too. It’s yet another excellent track.

And the final listed track, “Rich Man”, is the second of the two ballads. It does not musically build like the first; instead, it just allows Kevin Young’s voice to carry the song.

There is also one more unlisted and untitled track (basically a hidden track) afterwards.

In total, By God is another great album from Disciple.

Our rating for By God: 5 Stars. 5 Stars


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Back Again

A Best Fifth Release Nominee in the 2005 Awards


Interestingly, along with improving their music even more, Back Again contains quite a bit heavier vocals overall than their other albums [so far ].

Energetic opening track “Back Again” has fast, Raprock-style verses, a screamed bridge, and a sung chorus, as well as a great guitar solo near the end.

“Fear” emphasizes why we should, and can, not be afraid. It’s all-around great.

“103” is musically quite heavy, lyrically as great as ever, and has a great vocal melody in the chorus. It’s an excellent track.

“Touch” is even heavier, in all ways.

Keeping the energy going, “Face” continues almost all of that heaviness, and it has an appealing chorus.

“Wait” has a muted intro, which of course then morphs into excellent heavy Hard Rock. This track also contains an unbelievably long, 20-second scream (from 3:24 to 3:44!), showcasing Kevin Young’s incredible vocal (and lung!) power.

“Hardened” has vocals that are muted and placed in the background during the verses, while the bridges and chorus are at full volume.

“Why Don’t You Shut Up” has a catchy, rhythmic intro; and the vocals are quite raw. Lyrically, they explain that they’ll always just be who they are, saying what they need to in the style that they need to, no matter what.

“Before You” is an absolutely excellent heavy track that includes several pace changes. It’s one of the album’s best.

“Remembering” contains a different kind of vocal melody in the chorus in contrast to the rest of the song. Its music is as heavy as the rest of the album, and there’s also a neat little instrumental bridge near the end.

“Not The Same” powerfully explains that it’s not what people (and bandmembers) look like or sound like, it’s what’s inside— what’s in the heart— that matters. It’s another of the album’s best tracks.

“Next Time” has slightly more singing in it than most of the other tracks, though the music is still just as heavy.

And the final track, “One More Time”, is the only slow-paced song on the disc; but it does not have the feel of a ballad. Instead, it’s dark and slowly-building, closing out the album very well.

This is yet another great Disciple album, and we recommend it.

Our rating for Back Again: 5 & 1/4 Stars. 5 & 1/4 Stars


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Disciple Disciple Limited Edition

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BEST SIXTH RELEASE 2005 Award Winner!
Disciple's 'Disciple' - Best Sixth Release Award Winner

Runner-Up: Skillet (Collide).


With their self-titled sixth release, Disciple has somehow amazingly improved their already-great sound. In all ways, this record is excellent.

Disciple kicks off with “The Wait Is Over”. Their quality Hard Rock rolls out, and you know that this is going to be a great album.

The excellent music and great vocals of “Stripped Away” make it another great song.

“Into Black”, with a slightly different musical feel, lyrically reminds you not to worry because you’re never really alone.

“Only You” is one of the few songs on the disc that are actually acoustic-guitar driven; yet, like the rest of the album, it’s great in all ways.

“Rise Up” kicks the full Hard Rock back in, and its chorus is fairly catchy.

Several sections of “Worth It All” are also catchy; lyrically, it focuses on pressing on with all your heart and mind, because it’ll all be worth it.

“Shine Down” has great, rhythmic verses and a straight-up Rock chorus.

“Falling Over” is an all-around excellent song with an even better chorus and final verse— another one of the album’s best tracks.

“Go Ahead”, with the contrast of muted heavy verses and a just-sung chorus, lyrically talks about someone who is trying to cut them down with words/etc., and lets that person know that it won’t work and will only make them stronger in the end.

“Beautiful” is a slower, acoustic-guitar-driven track at first, but contains rock during the chorus and last bridge.

Slow Hard Rocker “Be The Quiet” has a great guitar line and rhythmic verses.

“Backstabber” picks the pace back up and lyrically rebukes someone who they trusted, who betrayed them; then firmly declares that they’re moving on.

“All We Have Is Now” is yet again quite catchy in certain parts. Lyrically, it encourages you to do what you can with your life today, because you don’t know what will happen tomorrow.

And finally the 14th track, not listed on the CD back [on the regular edition] but called “Tribute” in the liner notes, is another great song that is indeed a tribute to all of the men and women in our Armed Forces who have fought, and are currently fighting, for our freedom.

Limited Edition DualDisc CD-Side Bonus Content:

First of the Limited Edition CD-side bonus tracks is their excellent cover of Depeche Mode’s “I Feel You”. Along with their great Hard Rock musical take, frontman Kevin Young does the song’s octave changes amazingly. “I Feel You” is yet another Disciple best-of.

“Suicide” has a direct message for those contemplating the act, firmly encouraging them to hold on to life, because there is still hope.

“Things Left Unsaid” is (what else? ) yet another best-of track. It has sweeping music; lyrically, it goes through the death of a loved one, with the message to not take any person or any moment for granted, and to do all that you can and care for them while you’re here. This song gave us goosebumps.

“Pain” closes off the Limited Edition disc; lyrically, it describes how pain from what others have done will remain (and only make things worse) until you let it go.

Limited Edition DualDisc DVD-Side Bonus Content:

The DVD side contains the entire Limited Edition CD audio (including the bonus tracks) again in 5.1 Surround-Sound for the benefit of those with home theater systems; it also contains a great “Day In The Life” video documentary that is humorous and insightful, as well as some individual video interviews with the bandmembers and their producer.


Disciple’s self-titled album is simply an excellent CD, and it’s definitely worthy of Best Sixth Release.

Our rating for Disciple: 5 & 1/2 Stars. 5 & 1/2 Stars


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Scars RemainScars Remain Special Edition

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Disciple's 'Scars Remain' - A Notable 7th-or-Higher Release Award Winner

Also Winning A 2006 Notable 7th-Or-Higher Release: Skillet (Comatose).
Runners-Up: NONE.


Interestingly enough, this album— Disciple’s seventh release— has both a bit more Melodic and a much more heavy feel to it this time around, the two aspects perfectly mixed; and the disc as a whole is even more coherent than before.

“Regime Change”, the opening track of Scars Remain, showcases their new musical mix perfectly. The bass and guitars are even more heavy and full, and even the vocals are heavier.

“Love Hate (On And On)” is a heavy, melodic, and powerful song that lyrically describes the stark blend of love and hate, good and evil, present in this life.

“My Hell” contains interesting guitars and more great vocals.

Title track “Scars Remain” has a great, synchronized bass/guitar/drum intro. And while the vocals stay within the limits of Hard Rock (albeit on the heavy end), the music on this particular track surprisingly dips into Metal territory at its close. (Indeed, this is easily the second-heaviest track on the disc.)

“Game On”, an excellent, energetic tribute to all the men and women serving in our Armed Forces, has great lyrics that are done somewhat Raprock-style. (Plus, the powerful bridge gave us goosebumps. Wow.)

“Someone” begins with a fast-moving, quite heavy, and nicely distorted bass/guitar line that fades down for the verses and back up for the chorus; the song’s vocals are similar to those on their previous release. It finishes with a quick, excellent guitar riff.

“After The World” opens with an acoustic guitar, yet somehow seems to keep pace. It moves into straight-up Rock during the chorus.

“Dive” slides right back into fast-moving Hard Rock. This track is rhythmic, driving, and exuberant.

“Fight For Love”, a lyrical rally cry, slams in suddenly with heavy vocals, and the equally heavy music pounds gleefully in a few moments later. This is the disc’s heaviest track.

“Purpose To Melody” is a rhythmic, excellent, and very appealing Hard Rock track.

And the final, somewhat intriguing track “No End At All” is slower-paced with medium Rock music.

Special Edition CD Bonus Content:

Scars Remain‘s Special Edition CD comes with five extra tracks. The first extra track is the regular version of “Things Left Unsaid” (which can also be found on the Limited Edition of their previous album, Disciple). Next come bonus, freshly-recorded acoustic renderings of four tracks:

The acoustic “Love Hate (On And On)” is an interesting, darkly driven version, with an acoustic guitar, electric bass, and full drums. The vocals, of course, are not screamed but instead entirely sung; yet, as usual, Kevin Young’s voice carries it with great power anyway.

The acoustic “After The World” is an even more stripped-down version musically, featuring just acoustic guitar (which is quite good, actually). Its vocals are sung, yet they are also powerful and quite a bit more emotional.

The acoustic “My Hell” features acoustic guitar/electric bass/full drums and sung vocals. Its new music is different from anything else they’ve done, and it’s very good.

Finally, the acoustic “Things Left Unsaid” features mostly dark piano, with occasional acoustic guitar fills, orchestration, and percussion well in the background. The power of Kevin’s vocals in this emotional song are a bit of a contrast to the new music underneath.

Special Edition DVD Bonus Content:

The Special Edition also comes with a DVD, featuring two of their music videos (“After The World” and “Scars Remain”).


In total, Disciple has delivered another excellent album, certainly worthy of a Notable 7th-or-Higher Release Award.

Our rating for Scars Remain: 5 & 1/2 Stars. 5 & 1/2 Stars


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Southern Hospitality

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Disciple's 'Southern Hospitality' - A Notable 7th-or-Higher Release Award Winner

Runners-Up: NONE.


Disciple’s 8th album features vocals and a level of heaviness similar to their self-titled sixth release; but with their lineup changes, there are some new elements as well. And while their guitarwork has always been superb, its technicality has actually edged up a notch further.

Southern Hospitality kicks off with its indeed-Southern-touched, Hard-Rocking title track. It features exuberant lyrics, it’s catchy, and it’s excellent.

“Romance Me” quickens the pace a bit more with a driving beat and an energetic chorus.

“321” is another Southern-touched track, this one with lyrics reminding of the soon-approaching end of time. It flows into the next song without a pause.

“Whisper So Loud” is a driving, rhythmic track with an appealing chorus and an excellent high-speed guitar run in the bridge.

“Whatever Reason” is the disc’s first slowdown, but only to Rock — and it does pick up in power near the end.

Of course, “Phoenix Rising”, as you probably expect , brings the excellent full heaviness right back. The Hard Rock in the chorus and bridges is rhythmic and catchy.

“Liar” is even heavier, and (as explained in the liner notes) its lyrics deal with the struggle to forgive.

“Falling Star” is rhythmic with some appealing musical and vocal melodies; and it firmly points out that there is always hope, no matter what you may be feeling like.

“Right There” features full-sounding acoustic guitars in the verses and loud regular Rock in the intro, chorus, and bridge.

“On My Way Down” is heavier, and has another great guitar run near the track’s end.

“Lay My Burdens” begins with a bluesy, muted electric guitar, then kicks into great Hard-Edged Rock. Plus, just when you think it’s winding down, the rock slides back in for an encore! It’s an excellent track.

And the final track, “Savior”, is lyrically a compassionate prayer. Its music is low, medium-paced Rock; however, the vocals increase in height and emotion throughout, closing the album well.

This is yet another excellent album from Disciple, and it’s worthy of this Award.

Our rating for Southern Hospitality: 5 & 1/4 Stars. 5 & 1/4 Stars


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Horseshoes & Handgrenades

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Disciple's 'Horseshoes & Handgrenades' - Notable 7th-Or-Higher Release Award Winner

Runners-Up: NONE.


With Horseshoes & Handgrenades, Micah Sannan and Andrew Welch have now taken on the majority of the guitar-writing and -playing duties (indeed, Brad Noah features on only one track); and while (when compared to their previous releases) the lack of Brad’s distinctive guitar style is apparent, the guitars are in good hands, because they actually still feel like Disciple nevertheless.

The record starts off with “Dear X, You Don’t Own Me”, featuring great low orchestration throughout, and interesting lyrics written to negative emotions and feelings as if they were people, declaring freedom from those old ‘relationships’. It’s an excellent and memorable track.

“Watch It Burn” (the track featuring Brad Noah) musically kicks the heaviness up a few notches and showcases Brad’s classic, rhythmic guitarwork.

“Invisible” has firmly encouraging lyrics, and musically contrasts low verses with a chorus only slightly less heavy than the previous track. It also has a great instrumental outro.

“The Ballad Of St. Augustine” opens with an intriguing, fast-paced drum intro that builds in layers until the excellently heavy (and, indeed, occasionally Metal-styled) guitars kick in. It also contains some fantastic lyrics (particularly in the final bridge, which gave us goosebumps).

“Shot Heard ‘Round The World” features vocals that are generally even more heavy, emphasizing this track’s energetic defiance against death.

“Collision” is slower-paced but still has some great musical heaviness in the chorus and final bridge; and the chorus itself has the amazing quality of almost physically compelling you to close your eyes and just melt into it. This track is very memorable (and gave us goosebumps), and it’s yet another all-around excellent track.

“Battle Lines” switches back to a fast pace, and is again heavy with some Metal styling. The vocals are almost totally screamed or shouted, and (also again ) the lyrics are awesome.

“Remedy” again contrasts low verses with a rocking chorus (though featuring a different sort of guitar melody style in the verses). Interestingly, unusual pizzicato orchestration is also placed at certain points throughout; and the melody combinations in the chorus are very memorable.

“Eternity” is a bit heavier, though it does have an unusual melody combination between the music and vocals throughout the entire song (which may take until about the middle of the first chorus to get used to ).

“Revolution: Now” is a bit heavier still, and returns to their normal music style. It also features a great switch-up towards the end of the track, with some slightly suspenseful sound effects, cutting to a tiny fraction of silence, followed immediately by some great solo guitarwork and then the final bridge and chorus.

“Deafening” (featuring a collaboration with members of Stellar Kart and Kutless) has great lyrics and a memorable musical melody throughout (the chorus is memorable vocally, too). It’s yet another excellent track.

“Worth The Pain” musically weaves in dark, fast piano and a little orchestration throughout, and at several points they are contrasted with the heavy guitars to great effect. Memorable and with lyrics of firm hope, it’s the perfect track to close out the regular edition of the album.

Preorder Edition Bonus Content:

Those who preordered the album through Disciple’s website had the option to receive some exclusive extras, including a T-shirt, stickers, a short behind-the-scenes video, and (most importantly ) 7 bonus tracks. The band had actually wanted to put these tracks on the album but were unable to fit them in due to the limited number that they were allowed; so, they gave them away with a special preorder package. The tracks, which are indeed all excellent and very worthy of release, are as follows:

“Comedy Tragedy” is a heavy track with an intriguing, dark solo guitar line woven in at times. The lyrics are written to and about someone who is outwardly putting on a façade of happiness but underneath it all is really not doing well.

“Disasterpiece” is a classic, energetic and catchy Hard Rocker with (of course ) yet more great lyrics.

“Forget Me Not”, a song written to family back home, is excellent and very memorable (and gave us goosebumps)— and though all of the bonus tracks are great, we’d say that this one is easily tied with “The Fury” for the best of them.

“Fear And Suffering” features much heavier vocals and an appealing double sing/scream combination near the end of the track.

“Horseshoes And Handgrenades” has unusual and memorable verses (with slightly muted, and at times semi-spoken, vocals) and a rocking chorus.

“The Fury” is a rhythmic, energetic (and also very memorable) track that makes you want more. As mentioned above, we’d say that it’s tied with “Forget Me Not” for the best of the bonus tracks.

And the exclusive extras conclude with “Remake”. The only slow track of the entire release, it musically features just a bass and a low electric guitar played in a semi-acoustic style to place the focus on Kevin’s emotive vocals.


In all, this is yet another excellent (and Award-winning) album from Disciple.

Our rating for Horseshoes & Handgrenades: 5 & 1/3 Stars. 5 & 1/3 Stars


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