God Still Delivers: Steve Hess & Southern Salvation

GRADE:  B-

  • Album – God Still Delivers
  • Artist – Steve Hess & Southern Salvation
  • Label – Mansion Entertainment
  • Style – Progressive
  • Release Date – 03/31/17
  • Available For Digital Download? – Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  35 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

This week we take a look at the new album from Steve Hess and Southern Salvation, God Still Delivers.  This is the second recording from Southern Salvation to come across my desk.

The trio has a progressive Southern Gospel style that is reminiscent of early Poet Voices music, when they started as a vocal trio.

Steve Hess and Southern Salvation is composed of John McCall (tenor), Jay Arview (lead) and Steve Hess (baritone).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The group won the song selection process for God Still Delivers.  One only need look at the songwriting credits to know they picked some winners.
  • The strongest song on God Still Delivers is a cover, originally recorded by Old Paths; “How Great The Debt”.  This Rebecca Peck/Dianne Wilkinson collab would be a strong radio single choice.
  • Lead vocalist Jay Arview is allowed to show his talent on God Still Delivers.  The title track and first radio single from the album needs to be the first song featuring Jay, you need to listen.
  • Follow up that up with a nice up-tempo selection, “Some Morning”. This song has 80’s Southern Gospel written all over it.
  • That Poet Voices comparison is no more evident than on the album’s opening track, “Watch Them Giants Fall”.  All three group members came together to pen this fun song.
  • Tenor vocalist, John McCall is strongest on the Dianne Wilkinson/Tony Wood penned, “Beyond The Blood”.
  • Steve Hess is featured on the country flavored, “God Knows What It Takes”.  Love the message in this Rusty Golden/Dianne Wilkinson co-write.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “How Great The Debt”, “God Still Delivers”, “Watch Them Giants Fall”, “Some Morning”, “God Knows What It Takes” and “Beyond The Blood”.
CRITIQUE:
  • The Chuck Berry style guitar riffs at the beginning of “He Saw That It Was Good” didn’t quite fit the rest of the recording.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “He Saw That It Was Good” and “Praise My Way Out”.

WRAP UP:

Steve Hess and Southern Salvation did what every group should strive for; top your previous recording.  God Still Delivers is the best recording I have heard from the group thus far.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “Watch Them Giants Fall”/Jay – Jay Arview, Steve Hess, John McCall  2. “Beyond The Blood“/John – Dianne Wilkinson, Tony Wood  3. “How Great The Debt“/Jay – Rebecca Peck, Dianne Wilkinson  4. “He Saw That It Was Good”/Steve – Dianne Wilkinson  5. “Some Morning”/Jay – Fred Hess  6. “God Still Delivers”/Jay – Marty Funderburk, John Mathis  7. “Praise My Way Out”/John – Phil Mehrens  8. “Love Was His Cross To Bear“/Jay; John – Sue C Smith, Dianne Wilkinson  9. “God Knows What It Takes”/Steve – Rusty Golden, Dianne Wilkinson  10. “Born To Fly”/Jay – Joseph Arview

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