- Album – So Much Sweeter
- Artist – Pruitt Family
- Label – Custom
- Style – Traditional, Progressive, Country
- Release Date – 04/15/16
- Available For Digital Download? – Yes (Apple Music)
The Pruitt Family are celebrating three years in Southern Gospel music; so in terms of Southern Gospel years they are brand new. I was introduced to the group’s music with their 2015 release, Sweet Southern Joy.
2016 brings the Pruitt Family’s newest effort, So Much Sweeter. The Pruitt Family follows in the long tradition of family groups in Southern Gospel music.
The sound of the Pruitt Family is built around lead vocalist, Brooke Pruitt. She is already an accomplished vocalist, at 18. Her future is bright. The remaining group members are Tina (alto), Alexis (soprano/harmony) and Mark (harmony).
- After my commentary yesterday on Southern Gospel’s unoriginal trend, I was pleased that this was the album in my review list this week. The Pruitt Family’s, So Much Sweeter, is Southern Gospel by its very definition.
- The group accomplishes that from the start by covering Joel Hemphill’s classic, “Jesus Built This Church On Love”. Using an arrangement close to the original, Brooke shows her vocal abilities on a classic worth hearing again.
- Brooke takes the lead on another stand out penned by John Darin Rowsey. The country flavored, “Love At First Sight” would be a strong radio single choice. I could have heard this song on Southern Gospel radio in the 1980’s alongside the Hinsons and would have been very happy.
- The matriarch of the family, Tina Pruitt is featured on the group’s latest radio single; “God’s Appointed Time”. One of Southern Gospel’s strongest songwriters of this decade, Matthew Browder, wrote this powerful number that may give the Pruitt Family their second top ten hit.
- New Journey was a group, with songwriter John Darin Rowsey as vocalist, in the 1990’s. Many will not remember a song the group recorded in the early 1990’s titled “He’s Making A Way”. The Pruitt Family give listeners an amazing send off, by closing the album on this absolutely fun, up-tempo cover. I dare you not to hit repeat on this song. Loved it!
- The production quality of So Much Sweeter is about as good as any artist can ask for. The Pruitt Family has a winner with So Much Sweeter.
- Strongest songs included in order: “Making A Way”, “Love At First Sight”, “God’s Appointed Time”, “Jesus Built This Church On Love”, “But For The Blood” and “Bless His Name”.
- The a cappella ensemble work on “Till The Storm Passes By” could have been left off the album. This song has been recorded too many times and it is hard to come up with an arrangement that will add anything to the countless versions already circulating Southern Gospel playlists.
- Weakest songs included in order: “Till The Storm Passes By” and “Mama’s Prayer”.
As an artist, your goal should be to top your last album and especially if you’re a new artist trying to get Southern Gospel listener’s attention. The Pruitt Family have done just that by creating a better recording with So Much Sweeter than their last effort, Sweet Southern Joy. Another plus, I heard an entire album of Southern Gospel music, not 1980’s CCM being pawned off as today’s Southern Gospel.
SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter: 1. “Jesus Built This Church On Love”/Alexis; Brooke – Joel Hemphill 2. “Sweeter As The Days Go By“/Alexis – Kirk Talley 3. “God’s Appointed Time”/Tina – Matthew Browder 4. “Till The Storm Passes By”/Ensemble – Mosie Lister 5. “Bless His Name”/Brooke – Matthew Browder 6. “Mama’s Prayer”/Brooke – Matthew Browder, Brooke Pruitt 7. “Grateful”/Mark – Chip Davis, Marcia Henry 8. “But For The Blood“/Tina – Mike Upright 9. “Love At First Sight”/Brooke – John Darin Rowsey 10. “Making A Way”/Brooke – John Darin Rowsey
*Video Credit (The Pruitt Family – Topic)