Some Christian artists leave no doubt that they are coming from a Christian perspective, while others go about it in a more subliminal fashion -- so subliminal, in fact, that listeners who are unfamiliar with their work can easily assume that they are listening to secular music. Canadian rapper/singer Chris Greenwood, aka Manafest, is such an artist; there are subtle Christian messages to be found on The Chase if you're looking for them, but that's the thing -- you have to be looking for them. Introspective tunes like "Bring the Ruckus" and "Every Time You Run" don't beat listeners over the head with Christianity; instead of telling listeners why they need to be religious, Manafest reflects on his own struggles. And he does so with tracks, melodies, and harmonies that have a lot more to do with rapcore and rap-rock than they do with straight-ahead hip-hop. Manafest, who tends to rap the verses and sing the choruses, isn't rhyming over Dirty South beats or G-funk grooves; The Chase is an album that, musically, has more in common with Linkin Park than it does with hardcore rap. And even though Manafest actually raps more than he sings, don't expect to hear The Chase on any urban contemporary stations; this album is much too rock-minded for radio stations that mainly focus on R&B and hip-hop. But then, Manafest obviously isn't going after urban stations -- and he never claimed to be a hip-hop purist. Manafest is as much of a rocker as he is a rapper; he uses a combination of alternative rock and rap to express his Christian viewpoint. But again, Manafest's Christianity is so subtle that The Chase could easily attract both secular and Christian listeners -- and whatever one's religious views, this is a respectable, if less than groundbreaking, contribution to rap-rock and rapcore.
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AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson