Thursday, August 19, 2010

Greatly Blessed by The Gaither Vocal Band

Time for a CD review. :-) Since the Gaither Vocal Band regrouped, I have been looking forward to their first offical release. They did release a CD of songs they did before, same tracks, different vocals - but this is a CD with all new songs by the new line-up: Bill Gaither - pseudo bass, David Phelps - tenor, Wes Hampton - tenor, Mark Lowry - baritone - and Michael English - lead. So what do I think? Overall, pretty good. Some songs better than others:

1) Better Day - a cool song with no Christian message, but a nice song regardless. Unfortunately, Michael English ruins the latter part of the song, as only he can ruin a song.

2) When He Blest My Soul - an older song that I never heard before. They do a good job on it. Bill isn't much of a bass, but he doesn't sound too bad. Would have been better with a real bass singer - other than that, a great cut.

3) Love Like I'm Leavin' - an "ok" song. The words are good, not overly crazy about the style of song.

4) You Are My All In All - this is the gem on the CD. This is actually a praise and worship song, written by Dennis Jernigan - awesome. They start it out with "Canon In D" being played. I find myself listening to this one more than any other on the CD.

5) Please Forgive Me - This song was done some time back by the Crabb Family. I wasn't sure if I would like it by anyone else, but the GVB do an excellent job on it. The arrangement is different and the orchestration really makes the song even better.

6) Greatly Blessed, Highly Favored - a great song with a country feel to it. I love it.

7) He's Alive - this song is typically done as a solo, and the verses are here by David Phelps, with the whole group joining on the chorus. This has got to be the best recording of this song. Ever.

8) Ain't Nobody - another "ok" song. Written coincidentally by Benjamin Gaither as the other "ok" one is. Maybe I just don't like the style of song he writes......

9) Clean - This is a slow song, very pretty. But..... I have issue with any song that makes it sound like baptism saves you. The words say "there was something in the water, there was power in the blood." - and "the preacher man took me under beneath that cleansing flood.." There is nothing in the water to save us, it is the blood of Jesus, and baptism is a sign that we have become a Christian - it does not save us. Other than my having a theological difference with the song, I do enjoy listening to it.

10) Muddy Water - I don't like it. Not even a little. And yes, another Benjamin Gaither song. I'm starting to see a trend...... (He does sing himself, but it is not Southern Gospel, perhaps that is why his songs don't sound SG)

11) That Sounds Like Home To Me - the old Goodman song, redone here in a great way. I keep listening to this one over and over also.

12) I Know How to Say Thank You - a slow, quiet song. Not one to hit replay on over and over, but I like it.

13) He Is Here - A Talley's song from the early 90's. They GVB does it differently, but with good results.

I am a bit disappointed in the CD - the song selection could have been better, but the songs that I like - I really like, and I love the group's sound. Two tenors add, not detract.