When Lincoln Brewster wrote the title track for his latest studio album, he asked himself one primary question, ‘what would make the world truly the best place it could possibly be?’ His answer was “perfect love,” a love that would heal the world’s problems.
That root idea drove the creation of the entire record, Brewster told American Songwriter. “How we love each other, how we take care of each other, how we view each other, how we treat each other, is really the best shot we have while here on this earth,” the artist says.
The album, released April 30, 2021, features 11 tracks that all work together to tell the story of that “perfect love,” which Brewster attributes primarily to God. The songs draw listeners into contemplating both how they receive love, and how they express it to those around them.
“Sometimes we run from God, or hide,” Brewster notes. “But God says. ‘I just want to love you. I just want access.’ When it starts with that, when we can say, ‘I’m going to try to view myself in a healthy way, the way God views me and allow God to love me even though I don’t deserve it,’ then [we] let that become gratitude…and the natural overflow of a spiritually healthy person is evidenced in the way they treat others.”
Brewster’s place as a songwriter in the contemporary Christian genre is timeless, with the artist’s footprint on songs and albums for approximately 27 years. But the writer says as his artistry has grown and shifted, so has his understanding of Christian theology, which heavily impacts the lyrics he writes and the messages he puts forth.
This album, according to Brewster, is a vivid picture of his progression as an artist in vulnerable, brave songwriting, acting out of openness and simply writing from his heart.
“I’ve gone into records before where I was a little bit more guarded in some ways, but on this record I was ok with whatever the process yielded,” Brewster says.
The track “If Not For Christ” was taken directly from the songwriter’s personal journal. Brewster explains he was not even trying to write a song, he was just writing the inner workings of his heart. He later showed the writing to a friend who then encouraged him to create a full length song from that moment.
It’s that level of honesty, and letting himself really believe that it’s okay to feel your feelings, being up front about raging emotions and fears, that truly took this album to the next level of intensity for Brewster. The primary hope behind letting himself go to this stage of vulnerability is that individuals would be encouraged by the reality of God’s love and inspired to carry that love into how they treat others.
“I hope that it offers hope. If I’m not making music that’s making a difference in people’s lives when they hear it, I just want to pack it up,” Brewster notes. “I know that there’s music for me that I listen to that really helps me. So I just hope [the record] is that, because the right music is good for the soul.”
Music brings us back to who we really are, according to Brewster. It softens hearts, and brings walls down. When negative emotions are high and people aren’t at their best, understanding and perfect love is vitally needed.
“Some people call it grace, I might call it mercy, just being good to each other,” Brewster says. “We’re all hurting in different ways and we need to love each other well.”