Matthew West

The Story of Your Life

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Matthew West knows his pop music, having written tunes for everyone from Natalie Grant to Point of Grace, and The Story of Your Life is filled with the same hooky uplift he brings to his hired-gun work. West occasionally ghostwrites for secular artists, too, but this is a thoroughly Christian album, with slick CCM arrangements (think a PG-rated mix of the Fray and Coldplay, with any rough edges sanded to a smooth polish) and sermon-styled lyrics inspired by stories from West's own fans. The Story of Your Life sometimes gets a little too close to previous pop hits: “Family Tree” begins with the same chord structure and vocal hook as Howie Day’s “Collide,” and “To Me” cribs the melody from Train’s “Hey Soul Sister” during the verse. Even so, it’s hard to find fault with this album, which has been fine-tuned to sound as universal and tunefully genuine as possible.

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