One Step Lantern is the recording persona of Birmingham’s Oli Nicholls. From the opening jangling guitars and distorted vocals of “Reigns Forever” this album has its heart well and truly on its independent sleeve. “Trust” brings in a piano-led sound and “Good News” is a straight rock number that would not be out of place on a Soul Survivor or Phil Wickham album.
Oli is equally at home writing the quieter and more reflective material such as “Magnificat” with its quirky drum rhythm and he delivers them all with aplomb. Unlike nom-de-disc (look up Psalm 119:105) and album title (feeding of the 5000 in Matthew) the lyrics are not at all cryptic and seek to connect worshippers to the heart of God and are solidly based in the Bible.
The tracks are well arranged and produced and use the backing vocals and instrumentation to bring light and shade to the sound. ‘5 + 2’ is a really good album and one can only speculate as to whether it would sound any better with the kind of budget some American albums have thrown at them.
You will definitely be hearing more of Oli in the future.