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In an alternate life, I volunteered with a ministry at New Life Church known as theMill. I came into contact with both Aaron Stern, theMill pastor, and Glenn Packiam, then the worship leader. Both exposed me to an outward-focused approach to worship, and Glenn challenged me with one principle that he keeps in mind when writing new worship songs: simple singability. Glenn said that some of the best songs are those that are memorable not just for their encouraging message, but because they have a simple melody. Utilizing this new-found concept, I penned the song "Rift".

Written with some nod to the Davidic Psalms, "Rift" contains both confessional and prayerful elements. I personally found writing my first song written specifically for worship quite challenging. So many of my contemporaries are content to write songs that exclude the human condition or acknowledge the supreme sovereignty of the Savior. Being aware of this issue, I felt compelled to dig deeper and attempt a set of lyrics that spoke weightier things about the journey of relational, gospel-centric christianity.

The flavor of "Rift" has always been somewhat influenced by pop punk elements, and the band was happy to emphasize these in the final version. Evan (one of the drummers) lent his arranging abilities to the composition, and the other players easily followed suit.

During production of this track, I felt free to try a bit of experimental recording technique, as heard in the first few seconds of the tune. The effect is of the listener traveling very quickly towards the electric guitar amplifier, causing the tone to start distant and quiet, growing to a larger intimate roar. This was achieved by physically moving the microphone during the recording process, a bit of new turf for me as an engineer.


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