Some songs make you feel like you’re listening to music from a bygone era. Christ In Me Arise (listen here, lyrics here) by Trevor Thomson is one such song. The song itself has almost a baroque feel to it. While the instrumentation is not strictly baroque, the song still feels that way. In addition, it incorporates a somewhat infrequently used musical structure in that the refrain has a sad, meditative feel while the verses have a more joyous sound. To further emphasize the emotional aspects of the song, the lyrics reflect the feelings imparted by the music. The instrumentation for this song is quite interesting. The primary instruments in the refrain are cello, which imparts a meditative feeling, bass guitar and the finger picked acoustic guitar. The verses use an acoustic guitar, the cello here providing an uplifting feeling, a bass guitar and an added acoustic piano. In both the verses and the refrain, the piano and guitar play individual notes which imparts a flowing feeling to the song. The bass guitar in refrain and the verses is not the driving bass used in many rock songs, but a flowing bass to complement the piano and guitar. The lyrics of the refrain, accented by the music, are the words of one who is humbled and is searching for Christ. They are from someone who is going through dark or sinful times (Christ … dispel all the darkness). The individual is asking for Jesus to pour out his power and so to affect healing. This is someone who is calling almost desperately for help from the one who can provide true help. The last line of the refrain (…and I will rise with you) expresses confidence that Jesus will answer and send his help. In contrast, the verses express a more positive mood both lyrically and musically, expressing the searcher’s belief as to how Jesus would help. The first verse explains that Jesus would be his eyes, showing him the path to salvation and away from sin; Christ alone is the way (Jn 14:6). In the second verse, Jesus is envisioned to be his footsteps, leading him to the kingdom, helping him when he stumbles. The verses give one the sense that the requester was blind, then was suddenly given sight. A blind person who suddenly could see would want to know what they are seeing, what they should be looking for, and then they would want to be led to their desired destination. In the bridge, the individual explains the reason for his confidence. “You know my heart, you know my ways. You who formed me in my mother’s womb.” Jesus knows us better than we know ourselves. Because of that, he knows exactly what we need. He alone can be our eyes, be our footsteps, and guide us. This song expressed both the despair we may feel leading us to call out to Jesus, and the joy upon realizing that Jesus loves us, and will rescue us from our despair. If you are inspired by this post, please visit my blog at Christian Rock Musicality.