For King & Country, performing at Fraze on Tuesday, gives a fresh start with the latest album

For King & Country’s Luke Smallbone (left) and Joel Smallbone, performing at Kettering’s Fraze Pavilion on Tuesday, are on tour in support of the contemporary Christian act’s fifth album, ‘What Are We Waiting For?’

Credit: Jeremy Cowart

Credit: Jeremy Cowart

For King & Country’s Luke Smallbone (left) and Joel Smallbone, performing at Kettering’s Fraze Pavilion on Tuesday, are on tour in support of the contemporary Christian act’s fifth album, ‘What Are We Waiting For?’

Credit: Jeremy Cowart

Credit: Jeremy Cowart

Q: How has Luke been since his surgery?

A: It is good. We worked and he’s doing great, but it was scary for a while. Luke’s vocal cords had been troubling him for some time. (When) we were doing an interview for our Christmas album, I was sitting right next to him and I could hear this weird two-tone thing in his voice when he was talking. I said, ‘Luke, I hate to say this, but you really have to take this seriously.’ (It) really caused a deep dive into months and months of dating. This eventually led to surgery and he was unable to speak for five days. There were all the questions that come with this type of surgery. Will he ever find his voice again? Will it always be the same? It was certainly a precarious time.

Q: When did you start working on this album?

A: We decided that we had lived enough life and the world had lived enough life, so it was time to put pen to paper for this project. From January 1, 2021, getting this project off the ground has been our real goal. What was really special for us was that we wrote and recorded all the other records in the back lounge of a tour bus or in a dressing room. They were done on the go, but between still being limited by the pandemic and Luke’s vocal cord issues, we’ve really been relegated to staying home for much of last year, especially the first half. .

Q: What impact did that have on the album?

A: We were able to live, breathe and bleed for this project, day in and day out, in a very focused time. (It was) really special for us to be able to create in this way. It was kind of a discovery.

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For King & Country’s Luke Smallbone (left) and Joel Smallbone, performing at Kettering’s Fraze Pavilion on Tuesday, are on tour in support of the contemporary Christian act’s fifth album, ‘What Are We Waiting For?’

Credit: Jeremy Cowart

Luke Smallbone (left) and Joel Smallbone of For King & Country, performing at Kettering's Fraze Pavilion on Tuesday, are on tour in support of the contemporary Christian act's fifth album,

Credit: Jeremy Cowart

For King & Country’s Luke Smallbone (left) and Joel Smallbone, performing at Kettering’s Fraze Pavilion on Tuesday, are on tour in support of the contemporary Christian act’s fifth album, ‘What Are We Waiting For?’

Credit: Jeremy Cowart

Credit: Jeremy Cowart

Q: Based on the success of the album, I would say the approach worked. What does it do?

A: We were very happy but it’s not over. In the world of cinema, you have roughly 72 hours to see if it’s a hit or a miss. What I love about releasing music is that you have a pivotal first week, but then you can go on a journey with your listener for two or three years. You can show different sides of the album. You release different singles and different collaborations and different music videos. One thing that we’re really excited about, and love about this project, is that it’s not just a thing to do. You don’t just put the thing in the world and then move on to the next thing.

Q: The new album featured guests like Dolly Parton, Kirk Franklin and Dante Brown. What’s interesting about these collaborations?

A: It’s fun and it’s a whole other level of collaboration beyond Luke and myself. You know, ‘Who can we invite into these songs?’ We discovered the art of feature films on the last album with Timbaland, Dolly, Sydney from Echosmith etc. We really took that into this new project.

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Q: What can you tell me about the latest single?

A: It is a true spiritual song celebrating God’s love for humanity as we are and acceptance as we see it. Also, the amazing human-to-human love, that no matter what your faults, flaws, or problems, someone can love you unconditionally just the way you are. We’re looking at this hopefully as a cross-genre single. We played it on pop radio as well as Christian radio. We’ve never done that either, so it’ll be a fun little experiment to release in those different formats at the same time.

Q: What’s next for the band?

A: We literally have four or five new features lined up. I can’t share them with you yet but we’re so excited because it shows the whole album in a new way. Between tours, new singles and feature films, we’re really proud of the album and very proud of the response. We also have this excited, bubbling feeling that this is just the beginning.

Contact this contributing writer at 937-287-6139 or email donthrasher100@gmail.com.

HOW TO GET THERE

Who: For King & Country with special guest Rebecca St. James

When: Fraze Pavilion, 695 Lincoln Park Blvd., Kettering

Where: 8 p.m. on Tuesday, July 26

Cost: $25 Tix pack, $35 lawn and deck, $50 side band, $55 center band and $60 plaza in advance, $30 Tix pack, $40 lawn and deck, $55 side band, $60 orchestra central and $65 plaza the day of the show

More information: 937-296-3300 or www.fraze.com

Artist information: www.forkingandcountry.com

About Roy B. Westling

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