Dove Award winning artist, Jordan Feliz, is set to release The River Deluxe Edition this Friday (June 9). The album features sixteen songs including hits such as, The River, Beloved, and Never Too Far Gone. Five bonus remix tracks are also included in this album.
The River Deluxe Edition was produced by Joshua Silverberg who worked with famous artists such as Michael W. Smith and Newsboys, and Colby Wedgeworth (Lincoln Brewster, Tenth Avenue North).
Produced by Centricity Music, John Stokes who is the Senior Director of Sales and Marketing described The River Deluxe Edition as, ” a wide variety of sounds on the expanded project, and some surprises that include guest artists. It will be an assortment of different things that people won’t be expecting.”
Carry Your Troubles- Light guitar intro about casting our cares to the Lord, and how God gives us peace.
The River- A fast-paced song about being cleansed and washed away from sin. It is about being transformed permanently from a life of sin to a life in Christ. This is the original chart topping hit.
Never Too Far Gone- Original chart-topping hit. Never Too Far Gone is a dance song comprised of words God would speak to you about His love for you. It tells the believer not to feel the condemnation from sin, and feelings of being unworthy. It tells you that God is always with you, and that no matter what you’ve done, He still loves you and forgives you. There is never too great a sin that God cannot forgive, and you cannot run too far that God cannot reach you. He will always seek you, and the proof of His love are the scars that Jesus bore to take away our sins.
Best of Me- Dance melody. Best of Me is about breaking the chains of bondage and seeking the Lord. It is shedding off the old man, and putting on the new in Christ. The song describes the nature of God- how He is our provider, our strength, provides peace, hope for a better future, fulfills all of our needs- and how when we walk with Him, we have everything we need. When we choose to walk in Christ, we are filled with joy (as evidenced by the lyrics which quote us being taken higher, and being lifted higher), and how God only brings out the best in us.
Beloved- Little slower paced. Beloved speaks to feelings of not being good enough- not measuring up. The lyrics are God’s spoken words to us that He calls us His beloved. It talks about how He cares for us, He loves us, and how we were created for a purpose. Even though we may be swimming in self-doubt and depression, God is there calling for us to reach out to Him. He is asking us to lean on Him, have our eyes fixed on Him, and not to be fearful. It urges listeners that in the midst of our pain, nothing can separate us from His love, and to never give up hope. It tells listeners to not listen to Satan’s lies- to brush them off- and that we have worth in God’s eyes. Beloved is a very powerful message for those who are feeling self-condemnation and bringing them back to a place of hope.
Simple- Very basic song with drums and guitar opening. Other instruments join in after the first paragraph. It is about how the simple truth is believing God’s love is perfect. Despite our own “mess”, God loves us unconditionally. It is just that “simple”. It is about how God is truth, and we’ve been redeemed by Jesus’ death on the cross. It is about following Christ and living a life in Him. The rest is all about obedience. It’s not complicated, it is us who make it so by overthinking or pride.
Cheer You On- It is about how God is our greatest “cheerleader”. He rejoices in His children, wants the best for them, and sees the best in us. He is there to tell us that we can do anything. If we listen to the Holy Spirit, and know who we are in Christ, we can accomplish anything.
Your Great Hands- Your Great Hands speaks to brokenness. It is about surrendering ourselves to God and allowing His healing power to flow into us. He will heal our brokenness if we loosen our desire to control. If we are willing to do so, God will release His perfect peace and strength. He will remove all fear and restore us. It is beautiful that at the bridge, the tempo slows into more of a praise as if the melody were taking the listener into a spirit of releasing all of our hurts and being lifted up by God himself. Then the melody picks up again.
Live It Out- This song is about praising the Lord and walking in His joy. It is about living with an unspeakable joy that people can see thus drawing people to Jesus. It is a fast paced dance song in places. The melody goes from almost a mid-temp to more fast paced at the chorus. Live It Out is thanking the Lord for His goodness, and being an example- a light- of Christ. We are to be a light and an example to the world of a better, holier life. When we walk in the light, we exemplify the love of Christ- one that many need, but don’t know how to find.
How Long- Slower paced opening with some techno elements. More of a relaxed, yet melancholy/reflective feel. It is about God always being there through our entire journey. It asks how long God will be there, and answers that He is there through our journey both good an bad. It says, “until the lights go off” which may be taken to imply death/dying, however even in after our death, God is still there in eternity. We are never separated from Him. The violins at the end add a bit of a sad feeling, but seems to fit the song.
Satisfied- Piano music opens the song. Satisfied is about our life belonging to Jesus and that He is all we need to be satisfied. Only God satisfies our soul. Violin music enters in at the second stanza which adds a beauty to the song. Satisfied is a very pure, beautiful, simple song, which is a little different than what listeners may expect from Jordan Feliz. It shows a more meditative side to his music. It’s as if he is singing a conversation to God. It’s not happy, or upbeat, yet purely beautiful.
The River (Neon Feather Remix) – Remixed version of the original. Parts are sped up a bit, and more techno elements are added almost attempting to create a “washing” feeling in the listeners mind. It isn’t a bad remix, however the lyrics tend to get lost between such bold beats. I preferred the original song to the remix, personally. The remix took away from such an impactful song- not improved it. To me, it was an example of not messing with what is already a classic.
Beloved (NEVA Remix) (feat Joshua Luke Smith) – Not a bad remix. I enjoyed both versions, however, I find the first way more impactful. When you are trying to create a mood that we are God’s beloved and loved, I think the tempo needs to be slower and more soulful Techno or dance elements take away from that feel. The beats make it more engaging for the listeners, but the risk is loosing the impact that it was designed for.
They added some rap in the middle that was a nice touch, and the words were accurate. It does build up a “conqueror” type of attitude, but the tempo should increase with the sentiment, not go back to a slower pace.
Never Too Far Gone (Isaiah Tejada Remix) – Listeners may like the different arrangement of the song. It adds a different dimension to it. It sounds as if musically they were trying to turn it into a club song. Some may really like the mix up in sounds as it makes it funky, and some may absolutely dislike this version compared to the original. It will most likely appeal to the younger listener as opposed to the older.
Satisfied (Goodnewsbadnews Remix) – I enjoyed the surreal opening to this song. It gives the sensation of almost soaking in God’s presence. The first version was more cleaner in sound and more soulful. This version creates an atmosphere of soaking in God’s peace as it washes over you.
Both versions are great. I found lyrically, the music matched the message that was being conveyed. I enjoyed the purity of the sound and brought you more into the presence of God and created more of a sensation of drawing you closer to Him. The remix was more of a “soaking” feel.
Best of Me (Live from the Roadshow) – Best of Me takes the album from soaking in His presence to wide awake! It closes the album with a “bang”. It is a very emphatic end to the album. The lyrics are slowed down in places creating emphasis, but not a lot was changes in this version.
The River Deluxe Edition was very nice, and showcases different arrangements of popular songs such as Never Too Far Gone, The River, etc. Songs such as Satisfied, How Long, and Your Great Hands reflect more of an awestruck sensation of being with the Lord. It gets the listener to think about God on a deeper level if you listen to the lyrics. I loved the use of violin music in several songs to create mood- it worked well, lyrically.
For me, personally, the only songs that didn’t strike a “chord” (no pun intended) with me were the remixes. They were okay, but didn’t create a “wow” effect that you would expect when you remix a song. A remix you expect the same basis punched up a bit, but I didn’t get that from some of the songs. They kind of fell flat. It didn’t mean that they were bad, it just didn’t live up to what I expected musically- which was an enhancement of the original.