- Album – Voice In The Desert
- Artist – Freemans
- Label – Goldenvine
- Style – Traditional Country, Progressive
- Release Date – 07/30/13
- Available For Digital Download? – No
2013 is quickly coming to a close. It is time to get all my album reviews in before my annual countdown begins in December.
The Freemans released their newest effort, Voice In The Desert, in mid-summer 2013. This is the first new album from the Freemans since their 2010 album, Evidence. The Freemans are celebrating 30 years in Southern Gospel music. They have always provided listeners with their own style that melds a certain ‘hinson’ exuberance with traditional country sounds.
Voice In The Desert continues that tradition, providing Southern Gospel listeners with that traditional country sound. For those being introduced to the Freemans, the group is composed of Chris (lead vocals), Darrell (baritone/harmony, bass guitar), Misty (soprano/harmony, acoustic guitar), Joe (tenor/harmony, piano) and Caylon (harmony, drums).
- The album kicks off with the title track and the strongest song on the album. Lee Black has contributed another album stand out in 2013 with “Voice In The Desert”. This song has been one of the most played songs on my iPod in 2013.
- Chris’ unmistakable power vocal receives half the features on Voice In The Desert. In addition to the title track, Chris turns in a power house performance on “The Last Time I Looked” and the Ronny Hinson ballad “Unwanted Crown”. The latter would make a great radio single choice.
- Darrell has always brought the traditional country sound to the Freemans with his vocal work. The closing track, “Lead Me Home” is a song the listener will remember long after it ends. Penned by country artist Randy Houser and Craig Monday, the listener can hear hints of Vince Gill’s “Go Rest High On That Mountain” in the song. This song is a personal testimony for Darrell.
- Listeners will also want to give a listen to Darrell’s performance on “Where I’ve Been”. This country vocal will guarantee a few repeats before continuing to the rest of the album.
- Caylon and Misty give a ‘hard driving’ country treatment to the Imperials classic, “Water Grave”. This cover fits the Freemans style to a tee and is a must listen.
- Strongest songs included in order: “Voice In The Desert”, “Where I’ve Been”, “The Last Time I Looked”, “Lead Me Home”, “Unwanted Crown”, “Meanwhile Back At The Cross” and “Water Grave”.
- Another album released in 2013 that is not available for digital download. Really?
- While I enjoyed the Freemans cover of “Water Grave”, I don’t feel the cover of “John The Revelator” added anything new that other versions have brought listeners.
- Weakest songs included in order: “John The Revelator” and “Ole Trespasser”.
The Freemans style may not appeal to everyone, but if you were a fan of the Hinsons or enjoy traditional country sounds with your Southern Gospel, then pick up Voice In The Desert. It continues the long trend of quality music from this family that has given 30 years to Southern Gospel listeners.
SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter: 1. “Voice In The Desert”/Chris – Lee Black, Jason Cox, Kenna Turner West 2. “That Kind Of Love“/Darrell – Paul Brandt, Josh Leo 3. “Ole Trespasser”/Joe – Gerald Crabb 4. “The Last Time I Looked”/Chris 5. “Where I’ve Been”/Darrell – Del Way, Joshua Way 6. “Water Grave”/Caylon; Misty – Steve Chapman 7. “Unwanted Crown”/Chris – Ronny Hinson 8. “John The Revelator”/Chris – Rusty Goodman 9. “Meanwhile Back At The Cross”/Chris – Chip Davis, Douglas Johnson, Kim Williams 10. “Lead Me Home”/Darrell – Randy Houser, Craig Monday