On a periodic table, CO3 represents carbon trioxide, one of the most explosive elements, while in Biblical pretenses it stands for the incredibly moving third chapter of Colossians, which is centered around a life of love, compassion and commitment to Christ. In a strictly musical sense, the duo comprised of vocalist/acoustic guitarist Chad Little and vocalist/bassist/keyboardist Dave Romero is indeed on fire, blending remarkably rich harmonies, a wide variety of southern fried genres, an intricate balance of acoustic and electric instrumentation, capped off by powerful production. When it comes to matters of the heart, it's obvious the group intends to make an impact, crafting lyrical masterpieces rippled with relevant tales of hope, encouragement, faith and flat out fun.
"I guess you could say our group name has a double meaning," verifies Little, letting out of a laugh. "We joke all the time that we're like carbon trioxide. We're really caustic and we'll blow up on you! But the meaning is still Scriptural as well, talking about a total dedication to a life in Christ where the songs say it louder than we could ever talk about."
Such is the case of the dozen cuts on Determined (2007), a carefully crafted, continuously unified expression of the group’s diverse palette flanked with faithful observations and several singles in the making. The title track opens up the listening experience, calling all to stand firm despite moments of rising waves and rocky waters, while soaring with robust harmonies and catchy choruses. Tunes like “He Speaks” and “Only For You” call for an even more introspective frame of mind, but again are linked by unbreakable melodic bonds and a unique chemistry rarely covered on either side of the music industry coin. “Dreamer” goes out to those who’ve ever wished for something, serving as a rally cry for all to follow through with those ambitions and navigate the reigns with God’s will at the center. Yet it’s “Be Still” that truly encompasses these artists’ intentions, talking about waiting on the Lord and His ultimately perfect timing.
“We informally auditioned ‘Be Still’ for a major record label in their conference room and were told it was our career song,” observes Romero. “We’ve heard so much feedback about the track and how it resonates with so many people. It was one of those very simple songs that came together in an incredible moment that’s done really well for us ever since.”
While that track and the others on Determined are obviously steeped in the Divine, members also cite the Creator as the source which drew them both together. Though Little and Romero had previously performed together in other outlets and in the infancy of CO3 (then called Chord of Three), the latest sessions show the twosome’s most mature work yet, signaling their steadily developing artistic unity.
“The dynamic for us is that we’re continually on an evolutionary process,” sums up Little. “We’re always striving to be better as singers and songwriters and we pray our songs transcend charts, award categories and culture itself. I believe that in itself is the most spiritual thing we can do and we hope God will say ‘well done.’ We believe Jesus is the only way to God and our lyrics are about that, but we don’t necessarily have to say ‘Jesus’ throughout every song. We hope people hear our passion and that our observations transcend religion to hopefully help someone right where they are, wherever that may be.”