Full Sail: Mark Trammell Quartet

mtq2016fullsailGRADE:  B

  • Album – Full Sail
  • Artist – Mark Trammell Quartet
  • Label – Crimson Road Productions
  • Style – Traditional
  • Release Date – 09/30/16
  • Available For Digital Download? – No

SYNOPSIS:

Today we take a look at the latest album from the Mark Trammell Quartet; Full Sail.  The group released the recording the week of the 2016 National Quartet Convention.

This is the first album of new music from the quartet since 2014’s Your Walk Talks.  Traditional Southern Gospel quartet music is what listeners will receive from Full Sail.

The 2016 edition of the group is composed of Blake Buffin (tenor), Nick Trammell (lead), Mark Trammell (baritone) and Randy Byrd (bass).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • New tenor vocalist Blake Buffin is granted the best performance on Full Sail.  He shows how capable a tenor he is on the subdued, “More Than You’ll Ever Know”.  I like how this song is not over orchestrated, no big bells or whistles; just pure singing with simple accompaniment.
  • The quartet gives listeners a couple really strong traditional Southern Gospel up-tempo songs.  The strongest being the group’s current radio single, “Already In Canaan Land”.  This song is reminiscent of the classic quartet songs of the 1980’s.  Love it!
  • The second is the album’s opening track, “All The Way Home”.  Rebecca Peck and Dianne Wilkinson have been writing some great songs together recently.
  • Speaking of Rebecca Peck, Randy is allowed to show off a bit on this new Peck tune, “Treasures In Heaven”.  This song comes out of the 1960’s quartet playbook.
  • No Mark Trammell recording is complete without a big over orchestrated power ballad.  Listeners get two of those on Full Sail.  The stand out is the Bill and Gloria Gaither classic, “My Faith Still Holds”.
  • Mark also shows off a bit on the Henry Slaughter classic, “God Takes Good Care Of Me”.  I enjoyed this cover.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “More Than You’ll Ever Know”, “Already In Canaan Land”, “All The Way Home”, “Treasures In Heaven”, “God Takes Good Care Of Me”, “My Faith Still Holds” and “Go Show John”.
CRITIQUE:
  • Full Sail is a bit cover heavy having four recognized, over recorded songs.
  • “He Hideth My Soul” is done at such a slow pace it reminds this listener of playing records designed for 45 speed on 33 speed.  Those alive in the 1980’s will get this reference.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “He Hideth My Soul” and “Led Out Of Bondage”.

WRAP UP:

Full Sail is no doubt some of the best traditional Southern Gospel quartet music a listener will get this year.  The four song covers resulted in Full Sail not matching the caliber of the group’s prior effort, Your Walk Talks.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “All The Way Home”/Ensemble – Rebecca J Peck, Dianne Wilkinson  2. “My Faith Still Holds“/Ensemble; Mark – Bill Gaither, Gloria Gaither  3. “Go Show John“/Ensemble; Nick – Rodney Griffin, Dianne Wilkinson  4. “Treasures In Heaven”/Ensemble; Randy – Rebecca J Peck  5. “Already In Canaan Land”/Ensemble; Mark – Rodney Griffin  6. “He Hideth My Soul”/Blake – Traditional  7. “Led Out Of Bondage”/Randy – Robert Prather  8. “More Than You’ll Ever Know“/Blake – Dave Crawford  9. “God Takes Good Care Of Me”/Mark – Henry Slaughter  10. “Redeemer Of My Soul”/Ensemble; Nick; Mark – Rebecca J Peck, Dianne Wilkinson

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