Korean-American hip-hop trio AMP, comprised of Sam Ock, J. Han, and CL, have dropped their latest album, FUTUREGEN, a call to worship Christ in the midst of life’s mess. The well-produced, cohesive gem showcases an array of musical influences and delivers catchy, yet reverent hooks.
FUTURGEN opens with “Hail the King”, a strong electro-pop worship song that sets the overall tone of the album both musically and thematically. “Hail the King” celebrates God’s faithfulness and points listeners to the day when the thorns of life will give way to the joy of being in God’s presence.
“Chance”, another dance-friendly track, calls on listeners to live loud, hopeful lives for God’s glory and not become infatuated with building our own earthly kingdoms. “Far Greater”, another bouncy track accompanied by sunny boom-bap beats, aims to keep the faithful focused in their “march to Zion.”
“Get It” kicks off with C.L. and J. Han’s clear deliveries while Ock’s charge of the soulful chorus takes us to the choir. As with the previous track, “Get It” calls the present and future generation to follow Christ’s example of being obedient to the Father’s call, even in the face of opposition, loss, and death.
AMP gets even more transparent about their sins, fears, and failures on the next three tracks, with synth-friendly “Keep Me” leading off with a prayer for God’s grace and the worshipful “Over” closing out the triumvirate. The middle track, “Balance,” is a pensive meditation on flagging faith, because “even though the battle’s won, the battle’s real.” The track’s vivid word pictures provide hope for those of us battling soul-darkness, while its mellow chorus points to the trust we can have in the “One who is [our] stay.”
If, by this point, we are still convinced we can stay on mission with God in our own strength, the gritty, trap-ish “Mighty” featuring Tim Be Told is a wake-up call. The song, lifting God up as omnipotent King and fearsome Judge, is marked by a robust rhythm and braggadocious rhymes, softened only by an inviting, awe-filled chorus.
The final two songs aim to inspire: the title track “FUTUREGEN” as an invitation to embrace God’s empowerment and rise up, and “Lead the Way” as part motive-check and part motivation.
FUTUREGEN, AMP’s third full-length project via the group’s own Good Fruit Co., is an impressively honest call to live on mission despite our struggles and many failures. The 10-track album runs just under an hour, with every minute overflowing with worship and an invitation for listeners to pursue God’s work in the world.
Reuben Posthuma is a software engineer from Christchurch, New Zealand. He cycles, takes classes with CCEF, roast his own coffee, and talks a lot.