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Jars of Clay: Greatest Hits

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iTunes Review

This 2008 collection outlines the band’s history in streamlined fashion, providing the highlights of their shifts and detours over the years. What’s made clear is the consistency of the foursome’s message — the theme of God’s love and guidance in the face of earthly disaster has been a reoccurring one from their 1995 debut hit “Flood” onwards. The sparse folk-pop of their early work begins to be fleshed out with “Unforgettable You” and “I Need You,” while blues and soul influences become evident in “Amazing Grace.” More recently, “Dead Man (Carry Me)” and “Work” (from 2006’s Good Monsters) finds them working in a bracing modern rock vein. Whatever their sonic strategies, Jars of Clay has continued to distinguish itself with tight, vigorous playing and lyrics blending a playful spirit with a palpable sense of devotion. This holds true for the newly-recorded “Love is the Protest,” a celebratory rocker that’s a far cry from the moody contemplations found on their first album.  Greatest Hits gives a sense of how far this group has come, even as they’ve remained anchored in the Spirit.

Customer Reviews

Gift basket

Equivelent of a gift basket -- nice thought, not exciting. This isn't the most inspiring songlist. I can put together something more interesting -- not as mainstream, anyway -- and I think I will. iMix time. The unauthorized Sony BMG "The Essential Jars of Clay" is a more interesting collection. iTunes' own Jars of Clay Essentials is the best way to appreciate this band and its ever-changing obsessions, though the way that ignores the standing masterpiece that is "Who We Are Instead" is almost criminal. The original song on this collection, "Love Is the Protest", is worth downloading for Jars fans and for those who want to see what sound they're obsessed with right now. They always change.

Just a snippet

Jars of Clay has had the most varied and intense cd collection ever in my opinion. This is barely scratching the surface of their great cd library. However, only 13 songs from their previous albums is incredibly small. My Greatest Jars of Clay compilation has no less than 40. I know it not realistic to put that many songs on a cd, but 13 is still pretty small. Also, more disappointing is the fact that nothing from Who We Are Instead is on this album. I would argue that it is their strongest album lyrically and its a shame to see them shun such a great work of art. So in all, if you've never heard of Jars of Clay, they are simply amazing, and you should find everything they've ever done. If you have already heard of them, just buy love is a protest. It's a good song.

Contract fulfillment.

For me, the biggest disappointment is that Essential records just seemed to slap this thing together to fulfill the existing deal JOC had with the label. I don't know how much say the band had, but I assume that a "best of" was part of that deal from the beginning so they probably washed their hands of it. Anyway, what is with the bare bones insert and liner notes? This band is why Essential records is even here today, They couldn't have honored them in a classier manner? Doesn't this band (probably the U2 of the Christian market) deserve remastering or other such perks? I would guess that the "Hits" format allows Essential to release future product from the band, giving them bigger revenue streams, that is why this is just a single disc. By the way, there are 2 songs from "Who We Are Instead) on this collection...."Amazing Grace" and Show You Love". As for "Love is the Protest" I love how they mix the Simple Minds, U2 vibe of the production (and Bassline) with Mason's entirely "Classic rock" guitar riff. that type of musical cross pollination is one reason they are so far ahead of other Christian Market groups creatively. Also, am I the only one who thinks that is Steve Mason taking the vocal lead on the song? Definitely a different vocal timbre than Haseltine. Solid song. I'm anxious to hear the new music in light of the band's "independent" status. We will see how much of a creative ceiling was enforced by the industry.


Formed: 1993 in Greenville, IL

Genre: Christian & Gospel

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Jars of Clay were the breakout band of the so-called alternative CCM movement of the '90s, scoring an enormous mainstream hit with the debut single "Flood" and enjoying platinum sales. The group's lyrics may have been exclusively Christian, but their acoustic-oriented music fit perfectly into the folky jangle pop wing of alternative rock radio, at the time a rarity on the contemporary Christian music scene. Such success set the stage for breakthroughs by Christian bands like dc Talk and Sixpence...
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Top Albums and Songs by Jars of Clay

Jars of Clay: Greatest Hits, Jars of Clay
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