Well Done: LeFevre Quartet

GRADE:  B

  • Album:  Well Done
  • Artist:  LeFevre Quartet
  • Label:  Custom
  • Style:  Traditional, Progressive
  • Release Date:  07/14/17
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  35 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

This week we take a look at the new album from the LeFevre Quartet, Well Done.

Mike brought the quartet to the Southern Gospel scene in 2005 with the release of their debut album, Legacy.  The LeFevere tradition in Gospel Music dates back nearly 100 years.

The 2017 vocal line-up of the LeFevre Quartet is Jeremy Peace (tenor), Jordan LeFevre (lead), Mike LeFevre (baritone) and Keith Plott (bass).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • It is good to see Keith Plott back singing quartet music.  He is allowed to show off a bit on Well Done.  He has the lead on the album’s opening song, “I’m Gonna Be Movin”.  A nice traditional Southern Gospel quartet number.
  • Keith also has a stand out performance on the Southern Gospel classic, “Thanks To Calvary”.
  • There is some strong up-tempo songs on Well Done.  One of the strongest features Jordan, “Victory Side”.  This would be a strong contender for radio single possibilities.
  • A newer song that has been recorded a couple of times in the last few years, “How Great The Debt”, features Mike.  He still proves why he’s one of the best baritone vocalists in the history of the genre.
  • Jeremy’s strongest performance comes with a song he recorded when he was a member of the Old Paths, “Out Of The Grave”.
  • Can’t leave the review without also mentioning Jeremy’s other feature, the title track; “Well Done”.  A traditional Southern Gospel ballad that would also be a strong radio single contender.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “I’m Gonna Be Movin”, “Victory Side”, “How Great The Debt”, “Out Of The Grave”, “Well Done”, “Thanks To Calvary” and “Somebody Left The Door Open”.
CRITIQUE:
  • The LeFevre Quartet fall into the trap of recording songs that have been recorded too many times to count.  Listeners are given another cover of “I’m Too Near Home”.
  • Also, in regards to song covers, their version of the Joel Hemphill classic, “Ready To Leave” is not their strongest performance on the recording.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “Let The Church Arise” and “I’m Too Near Home”.

WRAP UP:

The LeFevre Quartet is consistent with the quartet music they’ve been providing listeners the last several albums.  They provide a nice mix of traditional and progressive Southern Gospel sounds.  Well Done is one Southern Gospel quartet fans will enjoy.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “I’m Gonna Be Movin”/Keith – Bobby Butts, Robert J Butts  2. “Well Done“/Jeremy – Jason Cox, Marty Funderburk  3. “Ready To Leave“/Ensemble; Jordan  – Joel Hemphill  4. “When God Says Live”/Ensemble; Keith – Debora Bailey, Annie McCutcheon, Daryl Williams  5. “Let The Church Arise”/Ensemble – Lee Black, Joseph Habedank, Tony Wood  6. “How Great The Debt”/Mike – Rebecca Peck, Dianne Wilkinson  7. “Somebody Left The Door Open”/Mike – Daryl Williams  8. “Out Of The Grave”/Jeremy – Rebecca Peck  9. “Victory Side”/Jordan – John Darin Rowsey  10. “Thanks To Calvary”/Keith – Gloria Gaither, William Gaither  11. “I’m Too Near Home”/Ensemble – Charles Wycuff

The One In The Water: Inspirations

GRADE:  C+

  • Album:  The One In The Water
  • Artist:  Inspirations
  • Label:  Horizon
  • Style:  Traditional, Appalachian
  • Release Date:  07/14/17
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  29 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

This week we take a look at the latest album from the Inspirations, The One In The Water.

The transition of Martin Cook exiting and Archie Watkins returning has taken place with this newest album.  The One In The Water is a return to classic Inspiration sounds from the 1970s.

The 2017 vocal line-up of the Inspirations is Archie Watkins (tenor), Matt Dibler (lead), Eddie Deitz (baritone) and Marlin Shubert (bass).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Long time bass singer, Marlin Shubert is allowed to show off on the stand out track, “I Shall Not Be Moved”.  This traditional Southern Gospel quartet standard is classic Inspirations at its finest.
  • The classic sounds of Archie Watkins is a winner with the title track and first single from the album, “The One In The Water”.
  • Roland is featured on a strong up-tempo song, “When Jesus Turns My Prison Into My Shouting Ground”.  This may go down as the longest song title of the year.
  • Speaking of classics, the Inspirations turn in a nice cover of the Jimmy Jones song, “I Want To Be Like My Lord”.
  • I don’t want to leave the review without mentioning Eddie Deitz performance of “I Know Him”.  A strong cover of this Singing Echoes original.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “I Shall Not Be Moved”, “The One In The Water”, “When Jesus Turns My Prison Into My Shouting Ground”, “I Want To Be Like My Lord”, “I Know Him” and “I Am So Blessed”.
CRITIQUE:
  • The last half of the album is hands down weaker than the first half of the album.
  • The album closes with a song that has the untrue meme that you can no longer say Merry Christmas.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “Jesus They’re Offended At Your Name” and “We Are Christians”.

WRAP UP:

Long time Inspirations fans will enjoy this return to classic sounds.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “The One In The Water”/Archie – Kyla Rowland  2. “I Want To Be Like My Lord“/Ensemble – Jimmy Jones  3. “I Know Him“/Eddie  – Gary Epperson  4. “When Jesus Turns My Prison Into My Shouting Ground”/Matt – Leonard Fletcher  5. “I Shall Not Be Moved”/Ensemble; Marlin – Traditional  6. “Teaching Me To Fly”/Archie – Karen Dyess  7. “I Am So Blessed”/Matt – Matthew Browder, Tommy Browder  8. “We Are Christians”/Archie – Tracy Jones  9. “Thank God For Preachers”/Eddie – Larry Whitehead  10. “Jesus They’re Offended At Your Name”/Matt – James M Jones 

Long Run (EP): Old Paths

GRADE:  B

  • Album:  Long Run (EP)
  • Artist:  Old Paths
  • Label:  Sonlite
  • Style:  Traditional, Country, Progressive
  • Release Date:  07/14/17
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  20 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

This week we take a look at a new EP from Old Paths, Long Run.

Anyone who follows Southern Gospel music on a regular basis knows the Old Paths stopped touring at the end of 2015 with the intent to return.  That return happened some 18 months later with the release of Long Run.

The 2017 edition of the Old Paths is Steve Ladd (tenor), Tim Rackley (lead), Doug Roark (baritone) and Daniel Ashmore (bass).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The EP only gave listeners (6) new songs.  The album kicks off strong with the Rebecca Peck/Dianne Wilkinson penned, “Peace Is On The Way”.  The arrangement on the song would cause a listener to think they were listening to the Kingdom Heirs.
  • Long Run has a consistent country Gospel sound.  A bit of a Cajun feel is found on the latest radio single, “Tangled In The Middle”.  The second verse allows bass vocalist Daniel Ashmore to shine a bit.
  • Rodney Birch has been good for the Old Paths.  He penned two early #1 hits for the group; “God’s Great” and “Battle Stand”.  His contribution on Long Run is “In The Long Run”.  This is a must listen.
  • The sole Southern Gospel power ballad on Long Run is “At The Name Of Jesus”.  This would be a strong choice for radio single.
  • The album closes with the up-tempo, “My Everyday Life”.  A fun song that will translate well to the concert stage.
  • Newest tenor vocalist and Southern Gospel veteran, Steve Ladd is featured on the ballad; “Broken People Like Me”.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “Peace Is On The Way”, “Tangled In The Middle”, “In The Long Run”, “At The Name Of Jesus” and “My Everyday Life”.
CRITIQUE:
  • While the Old Paths chose six good songs, there was no single song that absolutely blew me away.
  • This is one case where the group needed a full length recording, not an EP.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “Broken People Like Me”.

WRAP UP:

I, along with many Southern Gospel listeners, am glad to see the Old Paths return.  While Long Run might not blow you away, it is enough to whet your appetite until the next Old Paths album.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “Peace Is On The Way”/Ensemble – Rebecca Peck, Dianne Wilkinson  2. “In The Long Run“/Doug; Tim – Rodney Birch  3. “Broken People Like Me“/Steve  – Lee Black, Kenna Turner West  4. “Tangled In The Middle”/Ensemble; Daniel – Regina Walden  5. “At The Name Of Jesus”/Tim – Logan Peck; Rebecca Peck  6. “My Everyday Life”/Ensemble; Tim; Steve – Sandy Knight 

Walk Worthy: Master’s Voice

GRADE:  B+

  • Album:  Walk Worthy
  • Artist:  Master’s Voice
  • Label:  Sonlite
  • Style:  Traditional, Progressive
  • Release Date:  07/14/17
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  44 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

Vacation was fun.  It allowed me to relax and listen to Southern Gospel music.  This week we take a look at the new album from Master’s Voice, Walk Worthy.

Master’s Voice is a quartet based in Oklahoma.  Walk Worthy is the second quartet album from the group.  Both have been released by Crossroads on the Sonlite label.

The 2017 edition of Master’s Voice is Ricky Capps (tenor), TJ Evans (lead), Stan Watson (baritone), Jerry Pilgrim (bass) and Theron Perry (pianist).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The album kicks off with one of the strongest songs on the recording, “He Saw Me”.  Lead vocalist TJ Evans interprets the song perfectly.  This song needs to be at radio, pronto!
  • TJ is also featured on the album’s closing number, “Lift Up Your Hands When You Can’t”.  This is a progressive Southern Gospel ballad that left me wanting more.  A must listen!
  • Master’s Voice let listeners know they can sing traditional Southern Gospel quartet music with the best of them.  Jerry Salley and Dianne Wilkinson came together to pen the best traditional song on Walk Worthy; “Yes He Did, Yes He Does, Yes He Will”.  Love this song!
  • Baritone vocalist, Stan Watson is featured on the first radio single, “Where My Savior Is”.  Another great up-tempo number that is deserving of a listen.
  • Bass vocalist Jerry Pilgrim is able to show off on the jazzy style, “Another One Like Him”.
  • Master’s Voice also prove they can perform a classic hymn with simple accompaniment; allowing the vocals to shine.  Listen to “Burdens Are Lifted At Calvary”.
  • Mid South Boys was a favorite group of mine as a teen.  I was happy to hear Master’s Voice cover a Mid South song, “Without You I Haven’t Got A Prayer”.  They keep the arrangement country, making for an enjoyable listen.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “He Saw Me”, “Lift Up Your Hands When You Can’t”, “Yes He Did, Yes He Was, Yes He Will”, “Where My Savior Is”, “Another One Like Him”, “Without You I Haven’t Got A Prayer”, “Burdens Are Lifted At Calvary” and “Love Goes A Mighty Long Way”.
CRITIQUE:
  • The only downside is listeners may overlook Walk Worthy because they don’t know Master’s Voice.  Don’t be that person.  Get this album!!
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “More Than Enough” and “One Day Longer”.

WRAP UP:

My summer vacation was wonderful.  I listened to six Southern Gospel albums that will be reviewed over the next several weeks.  Walk Worthy was the best of those albums.  In fact, Walk Worthy is the best Southern Gospel quartet album of 2017 so far.  I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this album!!

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “He Saw Me”/Ensemble; TJ – Phil Cross; Tony Jarman  2. “Another One Like Him“/Jerry – Marty Funderburk; Gina Vera  3. “Love Goes A Mighty Long Way“/TJ  – David Edwards, Joseph Habedank, Dianne Wilkinson  4. “One Day Longer”/Ricky – Steve Chapman, Joseph Habedank, Lindsey Williams  5. “Yes He Did, Yes He Does, Yes He Will”/Jerry; Ensemble; Stan – Jerry Salley, Dianne Wilkinson  6. “Without You I Haven’t Got A Prayer”/Stan – Peter Jeffries, Robby McGee, Jeffrey Rath  7. “More Than Enough”/Ricky – Dianne Wilkinson  8. “Sowing The Good Seed“/TJ – Jennifer Berens, Phil Cross  9. “Do What Jesus Did”/TJ – Rachel McCutcheon  10. “Burdens Are Lifted At Calvary”/Jerry; TJ; Ricky – John Moore  11. “Where My Savior Is”/Ensemble; Stan – Rachel McCutcheon  12. “Lift Up Your Hands When You Can’t”/TJ – Benji Cowart, Mark Schultz

Hope For All Nations: Karen Peck and New River

GRADE:  B+

  • Album:  Hope For All Nations
  • Artist:  Karen Peck and New River
  • Label:  Daywind
  • Style:  Progressive
  • Release Date:  06/23/17
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  44 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

This week we take a look at the new album from Karen Peck and New River, Hope For All Nations.  The album hit retail on Friday June 23rd, 2017.

New River has built their career around progressive Southern Gospel sounds layered with some country flair.  Hope For All Nations marks the 26th album to mark the group’s 26th anniversary in Southern Gospel music.

The group’s sound has always been built around Karen Peck Gooch (soprano/lead).  The 2017 edition of New River is rounded out by Susan Peck Jackson (alto), Ricky Braddy (lead/tenor), Kari Gooch (harmony vocals) and Matthew Gooch (lead guitar).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Karen contributed her songwriting talents to seven of the twelve songs on Hope For All Nations.  The album starts strong with the classic New River country sound and “Love Will Never Give Up”.  This song sets the tone for the rest of the album.
  • The group adds a traditional spiritual feel to the up-tempo “Gotta Be Saved”.  Fun song!
  • This is the first album to feature newest vocalist, Ricky Braddy.  He shows he fits with New River on his performance of “Victory Is Mine”.  This mid-tempo song is the most traditional sounding Southern Gospel song on the recording.  This is an easy choice for radio single possibilities.
  • Karen gives listeners her obligatory power house features.  The strongest on Hope For All Nations is “The River”.  Karen adds a little extra soul to her performance.
  • She also has the lead on the first single from the recording, the title track; “Hope For All Nations”.  The central theme to the entire recording is hope; hope for us, hope for our neighbors and hope for the world.
  • The up-tempo songs on Hope For All Nations are all strong.  “God’s Got A Blessing” follows the same formula as the album’s opening track.  Classic New River.
  • Don’t want to leave this review without pointing out another must listen, “Who He Is What He Does”.  Ricky Braddy takes the lead adding a little blues/soul flavor to the vocal.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “Love Will Never Give Up”, “Victory Is Mine”, “Gotta Be Saved”, “The River”, “God’s Got A Blessing”, “Who He Is What He Does”, “Hope For All Nations” and “I Know I’ll Be There”.
CRITIQUE:
  • The only downside to Hope For All Nations is that it didn’t quite match the caliber of the previous album, Pray Now.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “I’ll Keep On Praying” and “All You Need”.

WRAP UP:

Karen Peck and New River is celebrating 26 successful years in Southern Gospel music.  They continue to remain at the top of their game in the music they provide Southern Gospel listeners.  Hope For All Nations has a high probability to be one of the top ten album releases of 2017.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “Love Will Never Give Up”/Ensemble; Karen – Jeff Bumgardner, Joel Lindsey, Karen Peck  2. “Hope For All Nations“/Karen – Lee Black, Benji Cowart, Karen Peck  3. “Who He Is What He Does“/Ricky  – Lee Black, Jason Cox, Kenna West  4. “The Reason”/Ensemble; Susan – Lee Black, Wayne Haun, Karen Peck  5. “Gotta Be Saved”/Ensemble – Joseph Habedank, Wayne Haun, Karen Peck  6. “I’ll Keep On Praying”/Kari – Daniel Doss, Wayne Haun, Karen Peck, Kenna West  7. “The River”/Karen – Rebecca Bowman, Kenna West, Sonya Isaacs Yeary  8. “Victory Is Mine“/Ricky – Melissa Brady  9. “God’s Got A Blessing”/Ensemble; Karen – Lee Black, Wayne Haun  10. “All You Need”/Susan – Tim Lovelace, Nathan Woodard  11. “I Know I’ll Be There”/Karen – David Clark, Wayne Haun, Karen Peck  12. “I’m Gonna Love My Neighbor”/Ensemble; Ricky – Rodney Griffin, Karen Peck

Be Brave: McKameys

GRADE:  B-

  • Album:  Be Brave
  • Artist:  McKameys
  • Label:  Horizon
  • Style:  Traditional, Appalachian
  • Release Date:  06/09/17
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  29 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

This week we take a look at the new album from the McKameys, Be Brave.  The album hit retail on Friday June 9th, 2017.

One thing McKamey fans can be sure of is an annual new recording from the group.  Be Brave marks the 53rd album in the group’s career discography.  That is impressive.

At this point in their career, the McKameys is not going to cover any new musical ground.  McKamey fans can expect the same traditional, Appalachian musical style the group has been providing since the start.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Sheryl shines on Be Brave.  Not only with her rich alto vocal but also with the songwriting she provided the recording.
  • The stand out track is a song Sheryl wrote and is featured; “Living For Eternity”.  A nice mid-tempo number that should be considered for radio single.
  • Sheryl backs that up with a nice ballad feature, the album’s title track; “Be Brave”.
  • The McKameys give listener’s a convention style song to open the album, “So Good To Me”.  This would make for a great concert opener in the live setting.
  • The album closes on a strong note with the Connie feature, “Since When”.
  • The album’s first single is a Roger Fortner feature, “For The Record”.  He has been a go to recently as far as radio singles are concerned.
  • With a running time of 29 minutes, you can listen to Be Brave twice in the time it takes to listen to most Southern Gospel albums once.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “Living For Eternity”, “Be Brave”, “So Good To Me”, “Since When”, “For The Record” and “Jesus Passed By”.
CRITIQUE:
  • Of all songs to cover, why “Come Forth As Gold”? This song was first recorded on Sheltered (1995).
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “Come Forth As Gold” and “One Thing I Know”.

WRAP UP:

The McKameys remain consistent to their style, heritage and their loyal fan base.  No need to ever paint outside that box.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “So Good To Me”/Ensemble – Tracy Jones  2. “Living For Eternity“/Sheryl – Sheryl Farris  3. “Come Forth As Gold“/Peg  – Sandy Blythe  4. “It’s Mine”/Ruben; Connie – Rebecca Peck; Dianne Wilkinson  5. “Be Brave”/Sheryl – Sheryl Farris  6. “On And On”/Connie – Sheryl Farris  7. “For The Record”/Roger – Sheryl Farris  8. “One Thing I Know“/Peg – Sheryl Farris  9. “Jesus Passed By”/Sheryl – Sheryl Farris  10. “Since When”/Connie – Kristi Fitzwater, Tim Parton

Testament: Perrys

GRADE:  B+

  • Album:  Testament
  • Artist:  Perrys
  • Label:  Stow Town
  • Style:  Traditional, Progressive
  • Release Date:  06/09/17
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  36 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

This week we take a look at the new album from the Perrys, Testament.  The album hit retail on Friday June 9th, 2017.

The Perrys are celebrating 47 years in Southern Gospel music.  Testament marks the third album released by Stow Town Records.  The Perrys use Wayne Haun once again to produce Testament.

The 2017 edition of the Perrys are composed of Libbi Stuffle (alto/lead), Andrew Goldman (tenor/lead), Troy Peach (lead/baritone), Jared Stuffle (baritone) and Tracy Stuffle (bass).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Libbi’s rich alto vocal has been the centerpiece of the Perrys sound for nearly 30 years.  She has the top three stand out tracks on Testament.
  • The best song on the album is the powerful, “I Will Pray”.  Libbi conveys the message with conviction on this soon to be Wayne Haun/Joel Lindsey classic.
  • The Perrys go back and cover the Primitive Quartet’s classic, “My Hope Is In The Blood”.  Libbi takes the song to new heights.
  • Libbi’s third masterpiece on the recording is another ballad, “Find Me Faithful”.  This would make a strong radio single choice.
  • Speaking of radio singles, the first from Testament is the stand out up-tempo song, “Moses And Elijah”.  This song of rapture, penned by Rebecca Peck and Dianne Wilkinson will have you hitting repeat.
  • The Perrys remind listeners of their convention style singing on the classic, “The Harder The Battle The Sweeter The Victory”.
  • It was great hearing Tracy performing on the barn burner, “Lord Send Me”.  While Jared turns in his finest performance to date on “Who I Could Have Been”.
  • Kudos for including some crying steel guitar, heard on the Troy Peach feature, “Sing In The Valley”.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “I Will Pray”, “My Hope Is In The Blood”, “Find Me Faithful”, “Moses And Elijah”, “Let’s Stop For A Moment”, “The Harder The Battle The Sweeter The Victory”, “Lord Send Me” and “Sing In The Valley”.
CRITIQUE:
  • The country-style, “It Carried Him” seemed out-of-place with the rest of the album.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “It Carried Him”.

WRAP UP:

The Perrys have a winner with Testament.  Could easily be one of the top album releases of 2017.  It is the best album the Perrys have released with Stow Town Records.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “Let’s Stop For A Moment”/Ensemble; Andrew – Kyla Rowland  2. “I Will Pray“/Libbi – Wayne Haun, Joel Lindsey  3. “It’s Not Here To Stay“/Troy  – ??  4. “Find Me Faithful”/Libbi – Jeffrey Bumgardner, Joel Lindsey, Karen Peck Gooch  5. “Lord, Send Me”/Ensemble – Ronny Hinson  6. “Who I Could Have Been”/Jared – ??  7. “Sing In The Valley”/Troy – ??  8. “Moses And Elijah“/Andrew – Rebecca Peck, Dianne Wilkinson  9. “It Carried Him”/Andrew – Wayne Haun, Kirk Talley  10. “My Hope Is In The Blood”/Ensemble; Libbi – Reagan Riddle  11. “The Harder The Battle, The Sweeter The Victory”/Ensemble – Traditional

The Beginning: Bowling Sisters

GRADE:  B-

  • Album:  The Beginning
  • Artist:  Bowling Sisters
  • Label:  Custom
  • Style:  Progressive, Pop
  • Release Date:  03/10/17
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  49 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

This week we take a look at the debut album from the Bowling Sisters, The Beginning.  The Bowling siblings have been performing at Bowling Family concerts for a while now.

These young ladies break away from their parents country-style and provide listeners with progressive Southern Gospel sounds mixed with pop.

The Bowling Sisters are Hope, Katelanne and Gracie.  Their parents should be proud of what these young ladies have accomplished with The Beginning.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The stand out track on The Beginning is a song that doesn’t fit the Southern Gospel market, but it grabs your attention from the first note.  The pop infused, “Higher Ground” is a must listen! The haunting melody stays with you long after the song ends.
  • The most Southern Gospel friendly song is the latest radio single, “He Sees What We Don’t”.  Always hoped 11th Hour would release this song, but glad the Bowling Sisters decided to record it.
  • The girls go back to the late 1980’s to pick up, “He’ll Do It Again”.  This was the go to song for aspiring female vocalists during this time.  Glad to hear it re-done.
  • The Bowling Sisters also show their prowess on an a cappella rendition of the traditional hymn, “At The Cross”.
  • The youngest sibling, Gracie, absolutely pulls at your heart-strings with “Fragile Hearts”.  The vocal maturity she shows on this number is outstanding.
  • Mike and Kelly should be proud.  Hope, Katelanne and Gracie show maturity beyond their years in what they’ve provided listeners.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “Higher Ground”, “He Sees What We Don’t”, “He’ll Do It Again”, “At The Cross”, “Fragile Hearts”, “You Brought The Sunshine” and “Forever”.
CRITIQUE:
  • The girls may have considered cutting the two weakest songs and leaving the listener with ten songs.  A running time of 49 minutes causes a bit of listener fatigue by the end of the recording.
  • Stylistically, The Beginning may be a bit too bold for a good chunk of Southern Gospel listeners.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “Stronger” and “That’s What He’ll Be”.

WRAP UP:

The Bowling Sisters wowed me with what they provided listeners on The Beginning.  Their vocal maturity, considering their ages, has to be heard.

SONG/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “So Smile”/Gracie – Lee Black, Ben Storie  2. “He Sees What We Don’t“/Hope – Amber Eppinette, Joseph Habedank  3. “Higher Ground“/Katelanne  4. “You Brought The Sunshine”/Ensemble – Elbernita Clark Terrell  5. “He’ll Do It Again”/Hope; Katelanne – Hazel Trubee  6. “Fragile Hearts”/Gracie – Jessica Campbell, Jason Cox, Sue C Smith  7. “Stronger”/Katelanne – Keisha Buchanan, Mutya Buena, Marius De Fries, Felix Howard, Johnny Lipsey, Heidi Range  8. “I Love The Lord“/Hope – Richard Smallwood  9. “Forever”/Katelanne – Christa Gifford, Kari Jobe, Brian Johnson, Jenn Johnson, Joel Taylor, Gabriel Wilson  10. “Nothing’s Too Big For My God”/Ensemble – Nancy Harmon  11. “At The Cross”/Ensemble – Isaac Watts  12. “That’s What He’ll Be”/Katelanne – Lee Black, Kenna West