Best Of 2013 – #19

Crystal RiverThe best of 2013 continues today with the album and recorded song ranked #19.  Progressive Southern Gospel music has a home on this year’s top twenty with young trio Crystal River.

Crystal River started in 2005 as a quartet under the leadership of Zack McGill.  In 2008, Zack McGill retired Crystal River and the group name was sold to Beckie Simmons.  Beckie found a young a cappella trio out of Georgia and re-branded them as the new Crystal River.

After three albums with Beckie (BSA World Records), 2013 found Crystal River branching out on their own and releasing a self titled album.  This was a wise choice because this 2013 release is the group’s best album to date and is one of Southern Gospel’s best albums released in 2013.  Crystal River is progressive Southern Gospel music, mixed with strong modern country sounds and a light pop infusion.

Crystal River recorded one of the most haunting/unique renditions of “Never Grow Old” that I have ever heard.

Personal favorites from this recording include:  “I Love You”, “Never Grow Old”, “Day Off”, “Here I Am”, “Minute At A Time” and “What A Day”.


TQIn looking at the best recorded songs of 2013, the song sitting at #19 is “I Go To Calvary” by Triumphant Quartet.

“I Go To Calvary” is track #2 on the group’s 2013 album, The Greatest Story.  Of the 15 songs that made up this recording, this was the one that stood out to me the most after all the many listens to the recording in 2013.

There is nothing fancy in the instrumentation (not over orchestrated).  It is traditional Southern Gospel music at its best, where the vocal conveys the message and is the centerpiece of the song.  Where Triumphant Quartet is at in their career, it would be hard to believe that they wouldn’t contribute to the best of the year when they have a new album.  Their contribution for 2013 comes in the form of “I Go To Calvary”.

Here is a YouTube clip (published by rhettmillerfan) of Triumphant Quartet performing the #19 recorded song of 2013, “I Go To Calvary”.  Enjoy!



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