Christian rock outfit Sanctus Real’s fifth full-length offering aims for the nosebleed seats, and more often than not connects. The Toledo, OH-based group has crafted soaring, highly accessible modern rock praise anthems before, but with Pieces of a Real Heart, Sanctus Real have put together a radio-ready bullet that sees targets at both ends of the secular/non-secular firing range. Like Switchfoot or Jars of Clay, Sanctus Real appeal to both worlds by dealing with the familiar themes of love, heartache, loss, and redemption without beating the listener (for the most part) over the head with dogma. Slick, polished, and clean as an unopened bar of Lifebuoy, the album boasts a trio of front-loaded singles (“Forgiven,” “These Things Take Time,” and “The Way the World Turns”) that are hopeful, catchy, and familiar enough to draw a wide range of commercial radio fans. If not, they at least seem destined to accompany the “journey” montage forced upon ousted American Idol hopefuls before they have to re-sing the song that brought them to ruin.
AllMusic Review by James Christopher Monger