Every Hallelujah: Canton Junction

canton-junctionGRADE:  B+

  • Album – Every Hallelujah
  • Artist – Canton Junction
  • Label – Difference Media Group
  • Style – Progressive, Country
  • Release Date – 08/07/15
  • Available For Digital Download? – Yes (Apple Music/Spotify)

SYNOPSIS:

Canton Junction hit the Southern Gospel scene three years ago with a twenty song debut recording.  In 2013, the group re-released 14 of those songs from the original recording; the only difference was a new baritone vocalist.

2015 finds the release of Every Hallelujah; a thirteen song collection of new music and several song covers.  That seems to be the prevalent formula is Southern Gospel music these days; every new album has to be a mix of new music and song covers.

The vocal line-up on Every Hallelujah is Matthew Hagee (tenor), Casey Rivers (lead), Ryan Seaton (baritone) and Tim Duncan (bass).  The group continues the style found on their debut album by melding progressive Southern Gospel and country sounds.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Every Hallelujah starts strong.  From the first notes of the opening track, “God’s Got A Better Plan; you know you are in for a musical treat.  Ryan and Casey trade-off vocally on the verses to this progressive Southern Gospel song that would rank near the top of potential radio single possibilities.
  • That flows right into the country sounding, “Tumbling Down”.  I love this song.  Casey Rivers soulful/bluesy lead vocal gives the song a Gaither Vocal Band feel.  Repeat was hit several times before continuing.
  • That goes into the whimsical sounding, “It Wasn’t Raining”.  Of all the songs that feature Tim, I enjoy this one the most.
  • Lead vocalist Casey Rivers is featured throughout Every Hallelujah.  The current single, “Weep No More”, allows Casey to continue that soulful/blues vocal.  This song of victory has found a home in my current musical playlists.
  • When it is not Casey, the album utilizes the Casey/Ryan vocal combo on quite a few songs.  One of those is the title track, “Every Hallelujah”.  Casey tackles the first verse, while Ryan offers a musical moment on the second of this progressive Southern Gospel tune.  This song should translate well in the live concert setting.
  • The Casey/Ryan vocal combo can also be found on the stand out, “I Am”.  Another song that conveys the message that Christ is whatever we need and are looking for.
  • Tim is allowed to show off on “I Need A Little More Jesus”.  Taranda Greene recorded this song on her Stronger album from 2014.  Canton Junction turns in a fine performance.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “Tumbling Down”, “God’s Got A Better Plan”, “Weep No More”, “I Am”, “It Wasn’t Raining”, “Every Hallelujah” and “I Need A Little More Jesus”.
CRITIQUE:
  • There are certain songs that have such a definitive stamp on them, it is almost criminal to re-record them.  For me, “When He Was On The Cross” is one of those songs.  The original version is so definitive, that any cover of this song never stands up to the original.
  • Also, the Dottie Rambo classic, “When I Lift Up My Head” is over used.  Dottie has such a huge catalog of songs in the up-tempo range to cover.  It seems like groups always go to “When I Lift Up My Head” when you have songs like “He’s Already On His Way”, “He’s Ready To Come, I’m Ready To Go”, “Just For A Day”, “March Around The Throne” and “Running My Last Mile Home” to name a few.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “When I Lift Up My Head” and “When He Was On The Cross”.

WRAP UP:

Canton Junction should be proud with what they provided listeners in Every Hallelujah.  Musically, I would be brave enough to state that Every Hallelujah surpasses the strength of their twenty song debut effort.  Go give it a listen.  I’m sure it will find a home on someone’s year-end best album list.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “God’s Got A Better Plan”/Ryan; Casey – Ronny Hinson  2. “Tumbling Down“/Casey – Michael Farren, Kenna West  3. “It Wasn’t Raining”/Tim – Kenna West, Lindsey Williams  4. “When He Was On The Cross”/Tim; Matthew – Ronny Hinson, Mike Payne  5. “When I Lift Up My Head”/Tim – Dottie Rambo  6. “Every Hallelujah”/Casey – Michael Farren, Sue C Smith, Kenna West  7. “I Am”/Ryan; Casey – Eddie James  8. “A Place Called Grace”/Casey – Michael Farrren, Sue C Smith, Kenna West  9. “For Moments Like These”/Casey; Matthew – Lee Black, Jason Cox, Kenna West  10. “I Need A Little More Jesus”/Tim; Ensemble – Erica Atkins-Campbell, Trecina Atkins-Campbell, Warren Campbell  11. “Living For Heaven”/Matthew – Jason Cox, Sue C Smith  12. “Weep No More”/Casey – Lee Black, Ben Storie  13. “The King And I”/Matthew – Mosie Lister

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One thought on “Every Hallelujah: Canton Junction

  1. I love it! It may be the best SG album of 2015. And I didn’t expect this version to be as good as the original version.

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