Combining a message of faith with elements of alternative and pop music, the South African quintet the Benjamin Gate found success quickly after dedicating their focus on their career. Consisting of lead singer Adrienne Liesching, guitarists Mark Paultz and Chris Poisat, bassist Costa Balamatsias, and drummer Nick Volsteedt, the group formed in 1998, spurred on to follow their musical ambitions after the death of a musician friend named Ben. The group quickly recorded a demo and received airplay from it in their homeland. Their big break came when an EP that had been sent to the States for mastering found its way to Forefront, via a studio engineer, and the act was signed to the label. Untitled, released in 2001, caused a stir, particularly within the Christian music community, earning positive reviews. Commercially, the album managed to spawn a pair of number one singles on the Christian rock charts ("How Long" and "All Of Me"), as well as "Lay It Down," which fell one spot shy of the top. Untitled also earned recognition in the form of four Dove Awards. Entering the studio for the follow-up, the group wanted to try and capture a more-live, less-polished feel, and Contact arrived during the summer of 2002. ~ Tom DemalonPortions of Content Provided by Rovi Corporation.
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