CASTING CROWNS: ‘Like church, but louder’

By Sheena Barnett/NEMS Daily Journal

Casting Crowns promises to sing “until the whole world hears,” and, city by city, the band is making that happen.
The Christian group took its message to 41 cities in the fall, and is continuing that with 41 new stops this spring. Casting Crowns – made up of Mark Hall, Melodee DeVevo, Brian Scoggin, Juan DeVevo, Hector Cervantes, Chris Huffman and Megan Garrett – promises this tour lives up to its previous tours, and fans will hear a mix of old favorites and new songs.
“We’re gonna do a lot of songs everybody knows, and a lot of the favorites,” Hall said in a phone interview from Georgia. “People will get to hear the stories behind the songs, where the songs came from, and a lot of the new songs. We’ve got a lot of stuff to cover.”
Casting Crowns asked Kutless to join them on the tour, and Hall said the band is a perfect fit for the show.
“They’re a pretty rocking, edgier band than us,” Hall said. “When I heard (the Kutless record) this past summer, I thought, this is what our crowd wants.”
A Casting Crowns show is for everybody, Hall said.
“You’ll see every age there, from 7 to 70,” he said. “The words are up on the screen. With everything going on, it’s sort of like going to church, but louder.”

‘Until the Whole World Hears’
Casting Crowns released its fourth album, “Until the Whole World Hears,” in November. The record debuted on the Billboard charts at No. 4 and was certified gold in four weeks. He recently had a chance to sit back and be thankful for all the band has accomplished.
“We had a Christmas party, and my wife, Melanie, is a road manager, and she pointed out the places we’ve been, the countries we’ve been to, and getting to look back for a moment and see where God’s brought us, it’s amazing,” he said.
While selling millions of albums and tickets are huge accomplishments, Hall said that’s not important to him and the band.
“Our goal with a Casting Crowns concert is, it’s gonna be bigger than music, it’s gonna be bigger than a band. For a night, our goal is to walk up beside you and just sit down next to you and encourage your walk with Jesus,” he said. “We’re not going to sing at you – we’re going to speak to you.”

‘Until the Whole World Hears’ tour
Who: Casting Crowns, Kutless, Caleb
When: 6 p.m. Saturday
Where: BancorpSouth Arena, Tupelo
Cost: $22/advance, $25/day of show, $75/platinum, $35/artist circle, plus service fees. Group rates are $15/groups of 15 and more, plus two free tickets, $10/groups of 25 or more.