June 21, 2012
By Rick Sharp
In partnership with the McKenzie Noelle Wilson Foundation
The death of a vibrant teen is always a tragic and heartrending event. When McKenzie Noelle Wilson gave her heart to God during an evening service at Beach United Methodist Church, Jacksonville, Fla., then led her parents to God, many saw God’s hand at work in her life. Her untimely death only a month later shocked and saddened the church community, but her passion and love for God served as the inspiration for much of Eleven22’s sophomore record (and first national release) “The Reason.” All proceeds from “The Reason” will go toward building an orphanage in Uganda through the McKenzie Noelle Wilson Foundation.
Eleven22 aims at reaching unchurched young people for God, and their music is drawing young people in droves. Their hard-hitting guitar-based heavy rock, powerful ballads and inspirational lyrics put them in good company. Their first record produced the song “Rooftops.”
Raw and often emotionally gripping, the record’s occasional lack of polish is far overshadowed by its pure spirit. With the overproduced, often overhyped worship music we hear these days, “The Reason” reminds us of the passion and overwhelming urgency experienced by that young band of believers 2,000 years ago. Whether you’re 14 or 85, listen to this record. There’s something here just for you.