Sometimes It Takes A Mountain – Gaither Vocal Band

gvb2014mountainmaxGRADE:  B+

  • Album – Sometimes It Takes A Mountain
  • Artist – Gaither Vocal Band
  • Label – Spring House Music Group
  • Style – Traditional, Progressive, Modern Country
  • Release Date – 10/14/14
  • Available For Digital Download? – Yes (iTunes/Spotify)

SYNOPSIS:

One of the most highly anticipated albums of the fall season has arrived with the release of Sometimes It Takes A Mountain by the Gaither Vocal Band.  This is the first album with the new vocal band line-up with Adam Crabb on lead and Todd Suttles on baritone.

Bill Gaither along with David Phelps and Ben Isaacs produced this new effort for the Vocal Band.  Sometimes It Takes A Mountain allows newest members Adam Crabb and Todd Suttles to shine as they receive the majority of features on the album.

The Gaither Vocal Band doesn’t change their approach/style with the personnel shifts.  Actually, what the listener gets is a more layered approach to the four vocals/harmonies throughout the entire recording.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The album starts strong with the Wes Hampton feature; “Jesus Gave Me Water”.  Long time listeners of Southern Gospel music may remember this song from the early 1990’s, recorded by Chronicle (Kingsboys).  A strong opening to the album and a strong radio single possibility.
  • The music of drums on a battlefield is heard throughout “We Are Coming Home At Last”.  This is the first song on the recording that allows listeners to hear the vocal stylings of Todd Suttles.  This song builds in intensity throughout making for a huge finish.  Think “Let Freedom Ring”.
  • The up-tempo, “You Brought Us Out” is a progressive Southern Gospel crowd pleaser that will require several repeats.  The melody to this song is eerily similar to another mainstream song that still has me trying to figure out.  Maybe one of my readers can help me out.  Todd Suttles also shows off some bass singing on this particular song.
  • Speaking of Todd singing bass, he is also featured as bass singer on the Mosie Lister classic; “Happy Rhythm”.  While you can hear Bill in the mix, he is not featured on Sometimes It Takes A Mountain.
  • New lead vocalist Adam Crabb is featured on the album’s title track and first radio single, “Sometimes It Takes A Mountain”.  This song is right out of the Crabb Family playbook in terms of presentation.
  • I don’t want to leave tenor David Phelps out as he turns in a great rendition of the Gordon Jensen classic, “Written In Red”.  Many may remember this song from Rusty Goodman or Janet Paschal.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “You Brought Us Out”, “Jesus Gave Me Water”, “We Are Coming Home At Last”, “Written In Red”, “Sometimes It Takes A Mountain”, “Let Is Start In Me” and “Happy Rhythm”.
CRITIQUE:
  • The Gaither Vocal Band has always been known for taking songs that have previously been recorded and covering them.  Such is the case with Sometimes It Takes A Mountain.
  • The biggest fail is the cover of “Peace In The Valley”.  This song has been recorded so many times, I can’t believe another version was warranted.
  • While church choirs will love the Vocal Band’s versions of “Resurrection” and “The Night Before Easter” at Easter season, I didn’t enjoy the big choral production given to “Resurrection” on the album.
  • The album also ends on a slow note with “Praises” and “Heaven Came Down”.  They would have been better off to close with the strength of “You Brought Us Out”.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “Peace In The Valley”, “Praises” and “Heaven Came Down”.

WRAP UP:

The Gaither Vocal Band are guaranteed to produce a musical product that will please listening audiences.  Sometimes It Takes A Mountain continues that trend.  If you really wanted to know how the group sounds with newest vocal members (Adam Crabb/Todd Suttles) you will be pleased with all the features the two of them receive.  No doubt, one of the top Southern Gospel album release of 2014.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “Jesus Gave Me Water”/Wes – ??  2. “We Are Coming Home At Last“/Ensemble; Todd – Geron Davis  3. “Sometimes It Takes A Mountain”/Adam – ??  4. “Happy Rhythm”/Ensemble; Todd – Mosie Lister  5. “Resurrection”/Ensemble – Bill Gaither, Gloria Gaither, Michael W Smith  6. “The Night Before Easter”/Todd; Adam; Wes – Dwayne Friend, Donnie Sumner  7. “That’s When The Angels Rejoice”/Ensemble – Larry Bryant  8. “Written In Red”/David – Gordon Jensen  9. “Let It Start In Me”/Todd; Adam; Wes; David – ??  10. “When Fear Comes Knockin'”/Adam – Paula Breedlove, Gerald Crabb  11. “Peace In The Valley”/Todd – Thomas Dorsey  12. “You Brought Us Out”/Ensemble – ??  13. “Praises”/Ensemble; Wes – Bill Gaither, Marshall Hall, Jeff Silvey  14. “Heaven Came Down”/David – John W Peterson

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3 thoughts on “Sometimes It Takes A Mountain – Gaither Vocal Band

  1. I’ve been excited about this release. Listening to the samples on iTunes left me a little disappointed. Guess I need to get the album and listen to it in its completeness. I will say what I heard of the vocals sounded fine, so it wasn’t the new guys. I think it was the style on some of the songs.

  2. I bought the album yesterday, and have listened to it 3 times through. What strikes me the most (as you mentioned above), is that Bill doesn’t have a single solo on the whole CD, not even one line. This to me seems to indicate that Bill is stepping out of the spotlight and letting his protégés shine. Also, the CD insert lists both Bill and Todd as Baritone/Bass.

    I could have bought this album from iTunes for the same price, but I like to by the physical CD so I can read through the insert. I was very disappointed to find that the insert is all messed up. Missing lyrics from some songs, partial lyrics, some songs are even in there twice. I’m not sure if mine was just a bad apple, or if all of them were that way. I’m going to mail the insert to Gaither Music Company and ask for a correct insert. Disappointing from a quality control standpoint. As the premier music production company in the industry, letting something like this hit the shelves is very un-Gaither.

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