Music Charis is a bright, rhythmic pop group originally from the Sacramento area made up, among others, of Blake Abbey, Jessie Abbey, and Bradley Abbey. Their latest release “Love>Money” is a friendly one, full of musical hooks, gorgeous soundscapes, and beautiful harmonies from Blake and Jessica. Unlike a lot of pop music, Musical Charis doesn’t try to distance themselves from the harder things in life. Instead, they take their light and shine it right into the heart of the darker moments, asking “what do we do after the worst has happened?” Hopeful, melodic, and percussive, the album has many, many high points and marks a fantastic chapter in what will hopefully be a long history, if we’re lucky.
“The Life” kicks the album off with a declaration that could just as well be the Musical Charis mission statement: “Be bold, be brave, and believe in love,” Blake and Jessica chant, and it’s in this powerful choice that they continue through the album. Blake was the victim of a hate crime in Sacramento back in June of this year, stabbed several times by somebody simply because he looked different. When these kinds of things happen, the instinct is to be angry, to not forgive, to quit. This urge is incredibly strong – but Blake and Jessica and the city of Sacramento banded together and instead performed benefit concerts for everyone who was mistreated, and Musical Charis kept on touring the country with their head held high.
“Forward” is another highlight on the album, taking on the feelings of doubt and boredom with a simple question: “what are you waiting for?” In every track, there’s a passion in the music that makes the listener want to hear Musical Charis live. Here’s a video of that song:
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“Darkness<Light” and “Love>Money”, the album closers, paint a fantastic portrait of what it means to really live a good life. Musical Charis have lived this out, not only with how they’ve dealt with the recent hardships, but in the million moments before, running a school in Sacramento to teach kids the power of music, playing many, many shows for free and open to all ages, and being the kind of humans that most only dream of being after watching an inspiring movie. When you find a band who doesn’t just have fantastic music, but also lives an amazing life, you go out of your way to follow this band. I hope you’ll do that for Musical Charis. Their latest album on iTunes, “Cherish the Charis”, is a good place to start. And if you happen to catch them live, be sure to get this one – Love>Money.