Memories: The Sound

GRADE:  B

  • Album:  Memories
  • Artist:  The Sound
  • Label:  Custom
  • Style:  Traditional, Progressive, Country
  • Release Date:  02/01/19
  • Streaming:  Yes (Apple Music/Spotify)
  • Running Time:  45 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

Today we take a look at an early 2019 album by the Sound; Memories.

Long time listeners of Southern Gospel music will remember a group from the late 80’s/early 90’s by the name of The Sound.  Based in Texas, former members included Terry Davis, Scott Fowler, Pat Hoffmaster, Mike Presnell, Frank Seamans and Rick Strickland to name a few.

Rob Mills was lead singer for the group from 1990 to 1993.  In 2017, Rob Mills purchased the name and reintroduced Southern Gospel listeners to The Sound.  The group is currently composed of Mills (baritone vocalist) along with sons Levi Mills (lead vocalist) and Jacob Mills (tenor vocalist).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Memories is exactly what it says; a collection of previously recorded songs from traditional Southern Gospel to progressive Southern Gospel to some country Gospel sounds.
  • Levi Mills is already an accomplished vocalist and he is just starting his career.  The stand out song on Memories is a Steven Curtis Chapman cover, “Hiding Place”.  The song was originally recorded by Chapman in 1989 (First Hand).  This is also the current radio single for The Sound.  A must listen!
  • Bart Millard of MercyMe released a Hymned album back in 2005.  It was a Southern Gospel friendly recording.  The Sound covers “Mawmaw’s Song (In The Sweet By And By)”.  Another stand out on Memories.
  • The trio let Southern Gospel listeners know they can also give some traditional Southern Gospel moments with covers of “Jesus On The Mainline” and “Turn Your Radio On”.
  • The group also takes a Carole King song from the 1970’s, “You’ve Got A Friend” and make it appeal to a Southern Gospel listening audience.
  • Rob penned a country song that deserves a listen called “I’m A Kid Again”.  This is the only new song on the album.
  • Strongest songs included in order: “Hiding Place”, “Mawmaw’s Song (In The Sweet By And By)”, “Jesus On The Mainline”, “You’ve Got A Friend”, “Be Still My Soul”, “I’m A Kid Again” and “Turn Your Radio On”.
CRITIQUE:
  • To this day I still don’t get the appeal of “I Can Only Imagine”.  Its made millions, so apparently I’m missing something.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “I Can Only Imagine” and “In The Garden”.

WRAP UP:

The Sound have quickly become a part of my musical playlists.  This trio is destined for great things in Southern Gospel music.  They currently have two albums.  Give them both a listen; Past To Present (2017) and Memories (2019).

SONG (tempo)/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “Feeling At Home” (Mid)/Ensemble; Jacob – Gloria Gaither, William J Gaither  2. “Mawmaw’s Song (In The Sweet By And By)” (Mid/Fast)/Levi – Barry Graul, Bart Millard  3. “I’m A Kid Again” (Slow)/Levi – Rob Mills  4. “Hymn Medley” (Fast)/Ensemble; Levi; Jacob Traditional  5. “In The Garden” (Slow)/Jacob – Charles Miles  6. “Jesus On The Mainline” (Mid/Fast)/Ensemble; Rob – Traditional  7. “Hiding Place” (Slow)/Levi – Steven Curtis Chapman, Jerry Salley  8. “Turn Your Radio On” (Fast)/Jacob; Levi – Albert E Brumley  9. “You’ve Got A Friend” (Slow)/Jacob – Carole King  10. “Be Still My Soul” (Slow)/Ensemble – Traditional  11. “I Can Only Imagine” (Slow)/Levi – Bart Millard

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Clean: Adam Crabb

GRADE:  B

  • Album:  Clean
  • Artist:  Adam Crabb
  • Label:  Daywind
  • Style:  Progressive, Country
  • Release Date:  05/17/19
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  49 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

Today we take a look at the latest album from Gaither Vocal Band alum, Adam Crabb; Clean.

Like older brother Jason Crabb, Adam is at his best when singing country style arrangements.

Clean is a mixture of country style songs and progressive Southern Gospel music.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Adam Crabb (along with Lee Black and Tony Wood) helped pen the stand out song on Clean; “There Is A Healer”.  This country/blues infused tune was also chosen as the first single from the album.  A definite must listen.
  • The only up-tempo song on the album is a Southern Gospel classic, “Well Done My Child”.  The progressive Southern Gospel arrangement along with Adam’s country vocals will have you hitting repeat.
  • One of the more unique songs I have heard is the Michael Boggs/Jason Cox penned, “Devil’s Hand”.  This country ballad tells how easy it is to fall into the world’s traps.  You have to give this song a listen.
  • While it seems obligatory that anyone associated with Gaither must record a Gaither penned song, I can’t deny the fact that Adam Crabb turns in a strong solo performance of “The Old Rugged Cross Made The Difference”.
  • The country style of Clean gets started with the album’s second track, “Higher”.
  • The musical piece at the start of “Clean” is absolutely exquisite.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “Well Done My Child”, “There Is A Healer”, “The Old Rugged Cross Made The Difference”, “Devil’s Hand”, “Higher”, “Clean” and “Voices”.
CRITIQUE:
  • As already mentioned, the country style of Adam Crabb and the country style songs far outweigh the progressive Southern Gospel songs on Clean.
  • A 49 minute solo recording is asking a lot of the listener.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “Love Will Take You Places” and “Where I Belong”.

WRAP UP:

Adam Crabb is at his strongest when he is in his country element.  There is enough of that on Clean to make for an enjoyable listen.

SONG (Tempo)/Style – Songwriter:  1. “Where I Belong” (Slow)/Progressive Southern Gospel – Daniel Doss, Krissy Nordhoff  2. “Higher” (Mid)/Country – Jason Cox, Daniel Doss, Kenna West  3. “Devil’s Hand” (Slow)/Country – Michael Boggs, Jason Cox  4. “There Is A Healer” (Slow)/Country; Blues – Lee Black, Adam Crabb, Tony Wood  5. “Champion” (Mid)/Pop – Lee Black, Jason Cox, Chris Con  6. “Clean” (Slow)/Progressive Southern Gospel – Natalie Grant, Bernie Herms  7. “Love Will Take You Places” (Slow)/Progressive Southern Gospel – Aaron Wilburn, Kevin Williams  8. “Well Done My Child” (Fast)/Progressive Southern Gospel – Byron Faust  9. “The Old Rugged Cross Made The Difference” (Slow)/Progressive Southern Gospel – Gloria Gaither, William J Gaither  10. “Voices” (Mid)/Country – Randy Phillips; Matthew West  11. “War” (Mid/Fast)/Progressive Southern Gospel – Charles Jenkins

Right Where He Is: Inspirations

GRADE:  B-

  • Album:  Right Where He Is
  • Artist:  Inspirations
  • Label:  Horizon
  • Style:  Traditional, Appalachian
  • Release Date:  04/26/19
  • Streaming:  Yes (Apple Music/Spotify)
  • Running Time:  30 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

Today we take a look at the latest album from the Inspirations; Right Where He Is.

2019 marks 55 years since the Inspirations began their singing career.  Archie Watkins was part of the original group and in 2017 Archie took ownership.  The quartet’s traditional, Appalachian style Southern Gospel music has stayed consistent since the group’s inception.

The 2019 edition of the Inspirations is composed of Archie Watkins (tenor), Roland Kesterson (lead), Eddie Dietz (baritone), Marlin Schubert (bass) and Luke Vaught (pianist).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Roland Kesterson is the star of the show, when it comes to Right Where He Is.  He has the perfect lead vocal for the Inspirations.
  • Listeners hear Roland, right out of the gate, on the album’s opening track, “He’s Coming Again”.  This mid-tempo song is classic Inspirations.
  • A future radio single in the making is another Roland feature, “They’ll Never Be A Giant”.  Kesterson also penned this mid-tempo song.
  • I counted at least three song covers on Right Where He Is.  The stand out is a song I’ve always enjoyed from the pen of Don Johnson; “His Hand Reached Further Down”.  While age is evident in Archie’s voice, he absolutely shows he can still belt out a song.  This is a must listen!
  • Marlin and Roland trade verses on a nice ballad, “She Gets Another Prayer Through Again”.
  • Pianist, Luke Vaught is featured on another song cover, “Obey The Spirit The Lord”  The group originally recorded the song in 1972 (Wake Up In Glory).
  • Strongest songs included in order: “They’ll Never Be A Giant”, “He’s Coming Again”, “His Hand Reached Further Down”, “She Gets Another Prayer Through Again”, “That’s Right Where He’ll Be” and “Obey The Spirit Of The Lord”.
CRITIQUE:
  • Age hits us all and there is nothing any of us can do about it.  I’m thankful Archie, Eddie and Marlin are still giving Southern Gospel listeners their all!
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “The End Of Time Is Near” and “Judas Kissed The Door”.

WRAP UP:

Right Where He Is, is another consistent album in the recording career of the Inspirations and I consider it a stronger recording than the group’s previous effort (The One In The Water).

SONG (tempo)/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “He’s Coming Again” (Mid)/Roland – Matthew Browder  2. “They’ll Never Be A Giant” (Mid)/Roland – Roland Kesterson  3. “Lord I Want To Be A Blessing” (Slow)/Eddie – Squire Parsons  4. “I Wouldn’t Change The End” (Fast)/Roland Mark Mathes, Dixie Phillips  5. “She Gets Another Prayer Through Again” (Slow)/Marlin; Roland – Steve Moss  6. “His Hand Reached Further Down” (Slow)/Archie – Don Johnson  7. “Obey The Spirit Of The Lord” (Slow)/Luke – Colbert Croft, Joyce Croft  8. “That’s Right Where He’ll Be” (Fast)/Ensemble – Megan Mulnix, Rebecca J Peck  9. “The End Of Time Is Near” (Slow)/Archie – William Carter  10. “Judas Kissed The Door” (Mid/Slow)/Eddie – Sandy Knight

Victory Shout: Kingsmen

GRADE:  B+

  • Album:  Victory Shout
  • Artist:  Kingsmen
  • Label:  Horizon
  • Style:  Progressive
  • Release Date:  06/07/19
  • Streaming:  Yes (Apple Music/Spotify)
  • Running Time:  33 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

Today we take a look at the new album from the Kingsmen; Victory Shout.  The album is slated to hit retail Friday June 7th, 2019.

For many years, in their heyday, the Kingsmen were known for ‘three chords and a cloud of dust’.  Their rambunctious stage presence made them the best concert ticket of the 1980s.  In recent years the Kingsmen have moved to a modern, progressive Southern Gospel style.  Victory Shout may be the most progressive recording in the Kingsmen’s discography.

The 2019 edition of the Kingsmen is composed of Chris Jenkins (tenor), Chris Bryant (lead), Alan Kendall (baritone) and hall of fame member, Ray Dean Reese (bass).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The album’s title track is already at radio and has been available on the music streaming services for several weeks.  This song of triumph is a powerhouse song that hits you from the first note.  “Victory Shout” is destined for the top of the charts!
  • Jason Cox, Joseph Habedank and Kenna West collaborated on the ‘hard driving’ progressive Southern Gospel song, “Dear John”.  Lead vocalist Chris Bryant is allowed to show off on this must listen!
  • Unlike the Kingsmen’s last album, which didn’t feature Ray Dean Reese on one song, Victory Shout gives listeners two Reese features.  The up-tempo, “I’ve Ever Been Glad” is a classic sounding Kingsmen tune.
  • The group also decided to go back and cover the Larry Gatlin song, “Prodigal Son”.  The song was originally recorded by the Kingsmen in 1991 (Wish You Were Here).  Another chance to hear Ray featured.
  • Baritone Alan Kendall is featured on “It Still Changes Me”.  A nice ballad that would work well at Southern Gospel radio.
  • If you want to know how progressive Victory Shout is, you need look no further than the album’s opening track, “Running To Win”.
  • Strongest songs included in order: “Victory Shout”, “Dear John”, “It Still Changes Me”, “Running To Win”, “Prodigal Son”, “Just Climb” and “That’s Where You’ll Find Me”.
CRITIQUE:
  • One downside to some progressive Southern Gospel songs is the arrangements lack any kind of character; they are boring and tend to bleed together.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “You’ll Move Mountains For Me”.

WRAP UP:

2019 marks 60 years since the Kingsmen released their first album (What Love, 1959).  Hall of fame member Ray Dean Reese marks 50 years with the group.  Victory Shout is one that long time Kingsmen listeners are sure to enjoy.

SONG (tempo)/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “Running To Win” (Fast)/Ensemble; Chris B – Sandy Knight  2. “Just Climb” (Mid)/Chris J – Adina Bowman, Gene Ezell, Karen Gillespie  3. “I’ve Ever Been Glad” (Fast)/Ray – Regina Walden  4. “Victory Shout” (Mid)/Chris J Jason Cox, Kenna West  5. “Dear John” (Mid/Fast)/Chris B – Jason Cox, Joseph Habedank, Kenna West  6. “It Still Changes Me” (Slow)/Alan – Chris Binion, Matthew Lawson  7. “King Of Kings” (Slow)/Chris B – Rebecca Peck, Dianne Wilkinson  8. “Prodigal Son” (Fast)/Ray; Alan – Larry Gatlin  9. “You’ll Move Mountains For Me” (Slow)/Chris J – Karen Gillespie, Rachel McCutcheon  10. “That’s Where You’ll Find Me” (Slow)/Chris B – Jason Cox, Kenna West

Back To God: Real Truth Revival

GRADE:  B

  • Album:  Back To God
  • Artist:  Real Truth Revival
  • Label:  Custom
  • Style:  Traditional, Progressive
  • Release Date:  02/22/19
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music/Spotify)
  • Running Time:  37 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

Today we take a look at the latest album from, new artist, Real Truth Revival; Back To God.

Back To God marks the first official mainline release for Real Truth Revival.  This new Southern Gospel quartet provides listeners with some traditional Southern Gospel moments mixed with progressive sounds.

The quartet has several familiar faces including tenor vocalist Jonathan Price, who traveled with the Dove Brothers and Dixie Melody Boys.  Lead vocalist Phillip Hughes spent time with the Kingsmen and Anchormen.  The quartet is completed with Ric Mull (baritone vocalist) and Roger Parks (bass vocalist).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Bass vocalist Roger Parks is the highlight of Back To God.  He shines on the second verse of “Stronger Than The Storm”.  This ballad should be sent to Southern Gospel radio.  It is a hit in the making!
  • Roger is also featured on a traditional Southern Gospel quartet, up-tempo number; “Prayin While I’m Waitin”.  This is a must listen.
  • Phillip delivers “Mercy Still Flows” with conviction.  The song gives off Kingsmen vibes during Phillip’s time with the group.
  • Baritone vocalist Ric Mull has a stand out moment with his feature, “Forever Redeemed”.  This is another radio single possibility.
  • Jonathan excels on the power ballad, “Love Is A Cross”.  His tenor voice was built for a song like this.
  • Strongest songs included in order: “Stronger Than The Storm”, “Mercy Still Flows”, “Forever Redeemed”, “Prayin While I’m Waitin”, “Love Is A Cross” and “Nobody But God”.
CRITIQUE:
  • The group covered a Randy Houser song which most recently was recorded by Reba McEntire.  “Back To God” was also chosen as the first single from the album.  Wasn’t keen on the song when it was first recorded.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “Back To God” and “Real Truth Revival”.

WRAP UP:

A slew of talented new artists have been introducing themselves to the Southern Gospel listening audience.  Back To God is a solid start to the recording career of Real Truth Revival.

SONG (tempo)/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “Back To God” (Slow)/Jonathan – Gerald Davidson, Randy Houser  2. “Prayin While I’m Waitin” (Mid)/Roger – Debbie Davis, Rebecca Peck  3. “Real Truth Revival” (Fast)/Phillip – Jonathan Price  4. “Mercy Still Flows” (Mid)/Phillip Dianne Wilkinson  5. “Love Is A Cross” (Slow)/Jonathan – Lee Black, Jason Cox, Dustin Guarnere  6. “Forever Redeemed” (Mid)/Ric – Greg Day, Adam Kohout  7. “Nobody But God” (Fast)/Phillip – Hal Reeves  8. “Stronger Than The Storm” (Slow)/Ensemble; Roger – Rodney Griffin  9. “Boy On A Bus” (Slow)/Jonathan – Duff Battye, Timothy Brownlow, William Cartledge  10. “Love Lives On”/Ric – Twila LaBar

Something Good Volume Two: Kingdom Heirs

GRADE:  B

  • Album:  Something Good Volume Two
  • Artist:  Kingdom Heirs
  • Label:  Sonlite
  • Style:  Traditional
  • Release Date:  04/26/19
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music/Spotify)
  • Running Time:  33 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

Today we take a look at the latest album from the Kingdom Heirs; Something Good Volume Two.

It is tougher reviewing an album of previously recorded songs than album’s of new songs.  How can an artist take a song that has been recorded hundreds of times before and make the listener want to hear another version?

The Kingdom Heirs decided to do just that by giving listeners Something Good Volume Two.  The first volume was a big enough success to warrant a second volume.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • The biggest winner on the album is Arthur’s cover of the Squire Parsons (Kingsmen) classic, “The Lovely Name Of Jesus”.  Considering its been 42 years since the original recording, it was time for a cover.  The song is also currently at Southern Gospel radio.
  • Next must listen is a song that had only been recorded once before, by the Cathedrals (Climbing Higher And Higher, 1990).  The Daryl Williams penned, “Thus Saith The Lord”, would make for a good radio single choice.
  • Jeff Chapman hits it out of the park with the group’s cover of “That’s How I Know”.  The song was recorded as recently as 2016 by the Tribute Quartet (Here For You).
  • The Kingdom Heirs cover of “What A Beautiful Day” stayed true to the original arrangement by the Happy Goodmans.
  • The quartet also give listeners a good cover of “It’s Gonna Be A Good Day”.  This song was recorded by Gold City in 1999 (Signed, Sealed, Delivered).
  • Strongest songs included in order: “The Lovely Name Of Jesus”, “Thus Saith The Lord”, “That’s How I Know”, “What A Beautiful Day”, “It’s Gonna Be A Good Day” and “When We Sing Around The Throne Eternal”.
CRITIQUE:
  • Unfortunately, Something Good Volume Two had nearly as many misses as it had must listens.
  • Did we another Kingdom Heirs recording of “Something To Shout About”?  It is already on two of their recordings.
  • The listener also didn’t need additional covers of “The Love Of God” and “Run On”.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “Joshua Fit The Battle Of Jericho” and “Something To Shout About”.

WRAP UP:

Very few quartets still provide listeners with traditional Southern Gospel quartet music nowadays.  The Kingdom Heirs do it with albums of new songs and those with previously recorded songs.  There are at least half dozen songs on Something Good Volume Two to add to your musical playlists.

SONG (tempo)/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “What A Beautiful Day” (Slow)/Ensemble; Loren – Eddie Crook; Aaron Wilburn  2. “It’s Gonna Be A Good Day” (Fast)/Ensemble – William Gaither, Suzanne Jennings, Jeff Silvey  3. “That’s How I Know” (Mid/Fast)/Jeff – Rebecca Bowman, Sonya Isaacs Yeary  4. “The Lovely Name Of Jesus” (Slow)/Arthur Squire Parsons  5. “The Love Of God” (Slow)/Ensemble – Vep Ellis  6. “Something To Shout About” (Fast)/Ensemble – Mosie Lister  7. “Run On” (Fast)/Loren – Traditional  8. “Thus Saith The Lord” (Mid)/Arthur – Daryl Williams  9. “When We Sing Around The Throne Eternal” (Mid/Fast)/Ensemble; Jeff – Albert E Brumley  10. “Joshua Fit The Battle Of Jericho” (Instrumental) – Traditional

Good Things: Joneses

GRADE:  B

  • Album:  Good Things
  • Artist:  Joneses
  • Label:  Song Garden
  • Style:  Progressive
  • Release Date:  03/29/19
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music/Spotify)
  • Running Time:  43 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

Today we take a look at the latest album from, new artist, the Joneses; Good Things.

Good Things was my introduction to the music of the Joneses.  The group sings a progressive Southern Gospel music style with arrangements that are reminiscent to the music of Brian Free and Assurance.

The trio is composed of Joy Jones (soprano/lead vocalist), her son Ryan Jones (tenor/lead vocalist) and Daniel Spriggs (lead/baritone vocalist).

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Daniel Spriggs is featured on the album’s stand out track, “Hallelujah He’s Returning”.  This up-tempo, folk flavored, song of triumph would make for a strong radio single choice.
  • Joy Jones spent time with John Darin Rowsey and New Journey.  She has a powerful soprano vocal, as evidenced on the classic, “The First Million Years”.  This should make for a great concert show stopper.
  • The album kicks off with a song co-written by John Darin Rowsey and ultimately the title of a Gaither video; Freedom Band.  The trio turns in a strong performance of the song, which is also the album’s first radio single.
  • Ryan and Daniel trade verses on the album’s title track, “Good Things”.  Ryan penned this fun mid to up-tempo song.
  • Jason Cox and Kenna West penned the most Southern Gospel friendly song on Good Things; “Morning Mercies And Daily Grace”.  This ballad fits Joy’s soprano vocal perfectly.
  • Ryan penned several songs on Good Things, including a song in which he is featured; “You Were Worth Leaving Heaven”.  Not only a strong songwriter, Ryan is also an accomplished pianist.
  • Strongest songs included in order: “Hallelujah He’s Returning”, “Freedom Band”, “The First Million Years”, “Morning Mercies And Daily Grace”, “Good Things”, “Glory” and “You Were Worth Leaving Heaven”.
CRITIQUE:
  • The second half of the album definitely exceeds the first half of the recording, in terms of song selection.
  • In spots, the album did rely a bit too much on heavily orchestrated tracks.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “God’s In Control”.

WRAP UP:

Southern Gospel music has a slew of talented new artists.  Add the Joneses to that list.  Do they have enough to separate themselves from the pack and have their music recognized by a larger Southern Gospel music audience?  Time will tell.

SONG (tempo)/Featured Vocalist – Songwriter:  1. “Freedom Band” (Fast)/Ensemble; Joy – John Darin Ramsey, Daryl Williams  2. “I Know Enough To Know” (Mid)/Ryan – Billy Blackwood, Marty Funderburk  3. “Glory” (Slow)/Joy; Daniel – Carl Cartee, David Moffitt  4. “Great Is His Name” (Mid)/Daniel Greg Bostock  5. “God’s In Control” (Slow)/Ryan; Daniel; Joy – Kurt Carr  6. “Good Things” (Mid/Fast)/Ryan – Ryan Jones  7. “Morning Mercies And Daily Grace” (Slow)/Joy – Jason Cox, Kenna West  8. “You Were Worth Leaving Heaven” (Slow)/Ryan – Ryan Jones  9. “Hallelujah He’s Returning” (Mid/Fast)/Daniel – Ryan Jones  10. “The First Million Years” (Slow)/Joy – Jimmie Davis, Dottie Rambo  11. “You Don’t Have To See To Believe” (Slow)/Ryan – Ryan Jones

Deeper Oceans: Joseph Habedank

GRADE:  A-

  • Album:  Deeper Oceans
  • Artist:  Joseph Habedank
  • Label:  Daywind
  • Style:  Progressive, Country
  • Release Date:  04/26/19
  • Digital Download:  Yes (Apple Music)
  • Running Time:  39 Minutes

SYNOPSIS:

Today we take a look at the newest album from Joseph Habedank, Deeper Oceans.

Habedank is currently releasing the best music of his career.  Deeper Oceans builds on Resurrection but also moves back to a more rhythm friendly album compared to the big orchestrations found on Resurrection.

The album is filled with a ton of modern country sounds mixed with progressive Southern Gospel and some light pop overtones.

HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Speaking of some light pop sounds, the stand out track on Deeper Oceans is the title track.  The melody is reminiscent of something that a listener would hear from pop artist, Coldplay.  Not only that but the lyric is outstanding.
  • The mid to up-tempo, “None Of That Here” is a must listen.  A nice little reminder of won’t be found in Heaven.
  • If you have any kind of commute to work you can relate to the album’s opening song, “Sometimes It’s The Radio”.  A nice bop that will have you singing along.  Could have done without the radio tag at the end of the song.
  • The album’s first radio single is the mid tempo country tune, “Shame On Me”.  This could very well be another chart topper for Habedank.
  • Progressive Southern Gospel listeners have a lot to like about Deeper Oceans also.  The progressive tune, “Something Different” would do well at Southern Gospel radio.
  • Habedank contributed to all ten songs on the album and then assembled the Avengers of Southern Gospel songwriters to collaborate.  Some of the best writing of his career.
  • Strongest songs included in order:  “Deeper Oceans”, “None Of That Here”, “Shame On Me”, “Sometimes It’s The Radio”, “Something Different”, “Gone” and “Goliath”.
CRITIQUE:
  • A drawback, for some listeners, is there is no traditional Southern Gospel elements to the album.
  • Generic background voices, like what is heard on “Everything Bows”, sounds too 1990’s.
  • Weakest songs included in order:  “Everything Bows”.

WRAP UP:

Even if you’re not a frequent listener of Joseph Habedank’s music, you can’t deny he is currently at the top of his game.  He is releasing some of the best music in Southern Gospel music right now.  Deeper Oceans easily stands alongside Resurrection in terms of the caliber of material.  Already competing for best Southern Gospel album of 2019.

SONG (Tempo)/Style – Songwriter:  1. “Sometimes It’s The Radio” (Mid)/Country – Joseph Habedank, Tony Wood, Jimmy Yeary  2. “None Of That Here” (Mid/Fast)/Country – Lee Black, Joseph Habedank, Tony Wood  3. “Shame On Me” (Mid)/Country – Michael Boggs, Jason Cox, Joseph Habedank  4. “This Grace” (Slow)/Progressive Southern Gospel – Benji Cowart, Michael Farren, Joseph Habedank  5. “Gone” (Fast)/Country – Jason Cox, Joseph Habedank, Wayne Haun  6. “Deeper Oceans” (Slow)/Pop – Michael Farren, Joseph Habedank, Tony Wood  7. “Goliath” (Mid)/Progressive Southern Gospel – Daniel Doss, Joseph Habedank, Sue C Smith  8. “Everything Bows” (Slow)/Progressive Southern Gospel – Dave Clark, Joseph Habedank, Tony Wood  9. “Something Different” (Mid/Fast)/Progressive Southern Gospel – Joseph Habedank, Wayne Haun, Jimmy Yeary  10. “One More Reason” (Slow)/Progressive Southern Gospel – Dave Clark, Joseph Habedank, Don Koch