Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Pentecostal Event: Mount Calvary Holy Church of America's 85th Holy Convocation


Hey Everyone!!! Starting July 23rd - July 27th, the organization Mount Calvary Holy Church of America is sponsoring their 85th Holy Convocation in the city of Washington DC. This is the  first Convocation of Mount Calvary since the death of long time leader, Bishop Harold Williams. I think this will be a very bittersweet Convocation because as Bishop Williams was such a prominent leader within the organization, I am sure he will be missed and noted absent. On Wednesday, which is Women's Day for hr organization, the Convocation is commencing with Morning Glory featuring Pastor Suzie Owens as the speaker. Following Morning Glory, there will be various activities. The night service will feature Psalmist Anita Wilson and Pastor Jasmin Sculark as the speaker. On Thursday, Men's Day, the day is beginning with morning prayer. Following morning prayer is Morning Glory with Bishop Michael Rogers as the speaker and the Men's Day activities. For the night's service, the guest psalmist is Lowell Powell and the speaker is Bishop Neil Ellis. I think it is so great that the first two days are catered to and sponsored by the Women's and Men's department.  Friday morning, will also begin with morning prayer and morning glory with Bishop L. Spenser Smith as the speaker, which will be followed by a special luncheon for all the Minister's wives. I find it so commendable that the organization is sponsoring a luncheon for the wives of the leaders within the organization. The special guest psalmist for the night's service is Kierra Sheard and the speaker is Pastor Jamal Bryant. On Friday night, after the evening service, the organization is hosting a midnight musical featuring the Greater Mount Calvary Recording Choir, Damien Sneed, Marcia Chisolm, J.J. Hairston and more. This concert looks as if it will be one that people of all ages will be able to enjoy. On Saturday evening, the organization is sponsoring an 85th Celebration Stellar Banquet featuring Bishop J. Delano Ellis as the speaker. The closing day also known as the "Official Day" will begin with early Morning service featuring Bishop Hansel Henry, the Executive Vice Bishop and Morning Service featuring Mount Calvary's Presiding Prelate, Bishop Alfred Owens as the speaker. I commend Mount Calvary for not taxing the people and their time with extremely long activities throughout the day. I think it truly shows the intent of the leaders, in their not making the days full of activities. This year appears as if it will be an excellent Convocation and monumental for the organization. So Mount Calvary Holy Church of America have an amazing time in God, and I pray you will experience his presence and power like never before. Please go like the Pentecostal Perspective Facebook page, follow Pentecostal Perspective’s Instagram and Twitter pages, and share this edition of Pentecostal Event. God Bless!!!


Monday, July 21, 2014

Pentecostal Event: Church of our Lord Jesus Christ's 95th Holy Convocation



Hey Everyone!!! The organization Church of our Lord Jesus Christ is convening for their annual Convocation. Marking their 95th year, this appears as if it will be a major milestone in the organization's existence. This year's Convocation is being held July 23rd - July 27th in the city of Orlando, Florida. The theme for this year's Convocation is "There Remaineth Yet Very Much Land to be Possessed" coming from the scripture Joshua 13:1. The theme can be developed and explained on so many levels, so I am very convinced that the messages will be excellent. This is the first year for the new leadership within COOLJC and Bishop Robert Sanders is beginning his tenure with a bang. I think the biggest bang that sent waves across the Pentecostal world is the speaker line up for this year. The speakers announced for the Convocation are Bishop TD Jakes, Pastor Marvin Sapp, Pastor Donnie McClurkin, and Pastor Todd Hall. I find it very respectable that COOLJC is breaking down organizational and denominational boundaries to include these tremendous and well respected speakers. During the afternoon, there will be a host of workshops being offered to those in attendance ranging from topic such as A Look Into The Life of Our Founder, Making Healthy Choices, Understanding the Presider's Vision for 2014-2016 and others being presented by the leaders within the organization. Within the week, the organization has various events aside from workshops going on, from a delegates appreciation concert, to a family talent showcase. One thing I think delegates are very excited about is the midnight musical being held on the 25th that is featuring musical artists Lawrence Flower and Intercession, Javis Mays and Restoration and others. The name given to the musical is TGIF "Thank God I'm Free" which I feel is a clever play of words especially with the concert being on late night Friday. I truly believe this year's Convocation is going to monumental in the history of COOLJC, so COOLJC have a Holy Ghost filled experience in Orlando.



Friday, July 18, 2014

Pentecostal Fashion

Courtesy: Steve Madden


Hey Everyone!!! This edition of Pentecostal Fashion is inspired by a trend being seen on the feet of women all over. This trend I am referring to is the single strap stiletto. When I first saw this trend, I was not a fan, but my view on the shoe has changed since seeing the shoe more consistently. This trend looks best when worn in a dress up or dressy casual manner. The number one key to this look is a pedicure because with the shoe being open and very minimalist, the attention will be drawn to your feet and toes. Another key to this trend is ensuring your outfit holistically is simple and crisp, because with such a simple shoe, the outfit has to follow suit. This trend definitely appears to be on the rise, so as we continue to endure these hot summer months, ladies go out and get your single strap stilletos!  Please go like the Pentecostal Perspective Facebook page, follow Pentecostal Perspective’s Instagram and Twitter pages, and share this edition of Pentecostal Fashion. God Bless!!!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Pentecostal Review - Jason Wright and Master's Touch "Songs of Declaration"



Hey Everyone!!! This past week, friend to Pentecostal Perspective, Jason Wright, released his highly anticipated album "Songs of Declaration." This is a very exciting venture for Jason, seeing how this is his first album on Dream Gospel. As a new label that seems to be really acquiring some amazing talent, this release appears as if it will be monumental for both Jason and Dream. So without further ado I present my review of Songs of Declaration.

The album begins with an introduction from fellow choir front man, Kevin Terry. The musical portion of the album then begins with the fast paced song “You Are.” I love the unison beginning and simplistic aspect of the song. You are, is very catchy, you will find yourself singing along, even during your initial listening. The versatility of this song makes it very ambiguous and able to be sung by large choirs and small ensembles. I enjoy the transition the vamp made that turned the song into a full blown choir sounding song. The addition of the female lead created a nice sound and feel to it. This was a very great way to begin the album and set anticipation for the whole project.

The next song on the album is the single being played all over the US, “The Declaration.” I really like the group sound incorporated in the beginning , which has an amazing vocal dynamic aspect to it. The bridge and vamp creates a chant aspect to the song that will cause you to sing and nod your head. I definitely understand why this was chosen as the single because it is a very easy sing along with and leaves you inspired and encouraged.

"Be Revealed” starts off very slow-tempoed with a phenomenal solo that sets an amazing tone for the song. The song creates an intimate atmosphere just through the lyrics. Anyone in a relationship with God has in one way or another asked God for his plan to be revealed in their life. The choir is a nice addition that does a great job of balancing the sound so there is still an intimate atmosphere while bringing conviction. The vamp of the song causes you to internally surrender yourself to God. The interaction between the soloist and choir is so remarkably intertwined and complimentary it really creates a marvelous listening experience. The ending of the song with the solo was musically ingenious and compelling. This is a meaningful and emotionally compelling song that is a great addition to the album.

Just Say Yes” begins uptempo and in your face. Just Say Yes proves that Master’s Touch still is a power choir to it's core that has the powerful choir sound still in it’s pocket. This song is perfect for a concert or musical because of the energetic and powerful sound it possesses. The bridge was unexpected and did not fully fit the mold of the song created in the beginning. The vamp creates a great groove to move the song forward. Just Say Yes is a nice song that isn’t fully memorable but is pleasurable to listen to.

I love the way “Victory” begins and creates anticipation for the full choir sound. There is nothing like an organ blazing at the beginning of a song. The song has a Brooklyn choir inspired sound, which Master’s Touch carries off very skillfully. I am a fan of a modulating song, so as the choir modulated higher and higher on the vamp, my love for the song grew fonder. The incorporating of the soloist was a vocal treat to my ears. You can definitely tell that a praise break was on the horizon with the way the song ended.  This is definitely one of my favorite songs from the album.

There is nothing that says modern day church or creates a church essence quite like a drum machine or click track. So when my ears were greeted with the drum machine on “Ye Shall Receive Power”, I instantly thought this is their churchy song for the album. I was pleasantly surprised to hear that this was the Pentecostal classic recorded many years ago by the Midwestern District Choir of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World. With Lillin Llloyd as the soloist, you knew you were in for a treat. I love the updated sound and modernization of the song to make it relevant to today, while still keeping the basic premise and format of the song, that made and still makes it a Pentecostal church classic. There is nothing like a vamp that Lillian Lloyd sings lead on and she does not disappoint.  On this song she lives up to her instagram name of "Adlib Queen."

The slow tempo song "Glory to the King" begins with an awe inspiring solo. The solo truly draws you into the very presence of God. Master's Touch creates a very groupesqe sound that fits perfectly for the tone and feel of the song. The simplicity of the song creates an intimate atmosphere that is easily to song along with. Moments of praise and worship are sure to erupt from your heart during the vamp. This is a great worship inspired song I can see both choirs and groups singing.

"Faith" begins with a midtempo groove that captivates your attention, just upon the beginning few musical notes and sounds.  The accompaniment of the choir really adds a cool feeling and sound.  I really enjoyed the vocal dynamics that were used. The male solo was a good addition to the song because it added a fullness and completion. The vamp created a really nice groove which evokes an inward and outward response. Very cool song that isn't necessarily the most memorable, but definitely a good addition to the album. It was really neat to hear the song broken down in each vocal part for the informal teaching of the song to the audience at the end.

Even from the beginning of the song, you can feel and sense the choir essence that is set. "Standing On The Promises" opening with a lead was predictable, but in a good sense because you know mentally the song was headed in the right direction. The power displayed by Master's Touch blew me away and had me enamored by how great the choir sounded. The way the solo led the song into the bridge draws you further invested into the song. The vamp is a churchesque 1-2 beat that creates an at home service vibe.  It is predictable from start to finish but a positive addition to the album.

The mid tempo song "Turn Around" begins with a nice solo that uplifts and encourages as you listen along. The runs done in the solo are masterfully executed and shows off the male vocalist's vocal ability and strength. Upon the addition of the choir, you are welcomed with a full choir sound that once again shows their strength. The vamp is simplistic and easy to catch along to. This is a nice song but one I could have lived without on the album.

Jason Wright begins "The Blood" with a few words about the significance and power of Christ's blood, and subsequently the sacrifice He made on the cross. You can tell just through the introduction, that this is going to be a very moving and provoking song. I love the incorporation of the hymn "The Blood," and how it seemingly fits in. This song is versatile in the way in which the choir is singing and creates a musical journey for your ears. The vamp continues the journey that pushes you into a mental moment of contemplation on the significance of Christ's blood.

The last full song on the album, "Greater is He" begins with a techno/dance music feel to it that transitions into a calypso/reggae vibe. This is a easy song to sing along with because it quotes the very popular scripture I John 4:4. I enjoyed the modulating format of the song that pulls you in further after each modulation. The separating of parts on the vamp creates an awesome moment within the song that makes your listening experience the more enjoyable. This was definitely a great last song on  album because of it's nature and sound.

The "Ye Shall Receive Power (Reprise)" is a fantastic way to end the album. The music causes you to go into a praise, and the lyrics cause you to examine your life. There is nothing like a good praise break on a live album.

Overall this is a remarkable album that I enjoyed fully from start to finish. This album truly showed the musical growth and maturity of Jason Wright and Master's Touch. Please go out and support this marvelous album, you will not be disappointed. Please go like the Pentecostal Perspective Facebook page, follow Pentecostal Perspective’s Instagram and Twitter pages, and share this edition of Pentecostal Review. God Bless!!!




Friday, July 4, 2014

Pentecostal Inspiration


Hey everyone!!! Sorry for the slight pause in posts. My organization, United Church of Jesus Christ (Apostolic), had their annual Convocation which kept me very busy, occupied and unable to pull away to write. With today being July 4th, also know as "Independence Day" I thought it was more than fitting to write from the scripture Galatians 5:13. Seeing how it talks about the liberty we have as christians. In a church society that promotes the irresponsible use of the grace of God, I thought it was intriguing that Paul wrote about the liberty we have in Christ. The New Living Translation writes Galatians 5:13 as such "For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don't use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love." I wonder if people grasp the magnitude of that statement. Even though we are given God's grace, we must not abuse it and use it as a safety net to give into our sinful desires and wants. Jesus commanded us to be holy in Matthew 5:48, and that is the responsibility of every follower in Christ. We cannot allow the influences of the world cause us to live contrary lives to what is required of us. According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, the word liberty means "the power to do as one pleases." As we look upon our lives and walk with Christ, that truly describes our relationship with Christ. Because of the love and grace of God, we have liberty in the choices and decisions we make, but it is up to us to makely Godly choices and decisions. Just as in the natural, when someone we love is presented with the opportunity to do wrong or hurt us and decides to do the opposite, it makes up proud and happy.  So it is with God. When presented with the opportunity to sin and appease your flesh, when you do the opposite, it not only makes God happy but it makes the devil look foolish and your spirit at peace. In this era, it is sad to say but instead of making the devil look foolish we are giving him ammunition on us and causing ourselves and our walk with Christ to look foolish. So as we move forward for Christ the next time you are presented with the opportunity to displease God, please remember the joy that God feels when you do the opposite. Please go like the Pentecostal Perspective Facebook page, follow the Pentecostal Perspective’s Instagram and Twitter pages, and share this edition of Pentecostal Inspiration. God Bless!!!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Pentecostal Spotlight - Latice Crawford-Spain

Hey Everyone!!! On the second season of Sunday Best there was a contestant who wowed the judges and won the hearts of viewers all the way to the third spot of the competition. That contestant was the phenomenal Latice Crawford-Spain. Only known then as Latice Crawford, she demonstrated poise, grace and anointing consistently while on the stage of the competition. Even though she did not win the competition, she cemented a place in the hearts and minds of America. Using the platform given to her to advance her ministry, Latice debuted her first album, Latice Crawford, back in January to much acclaim. Latice continually proves that she is a major asset to the body of Christ and someone whose voice is unique and special.  So without further ado, I present my interview with Latice Crawford-Spain.

How did your journey in music begin?

I've been singing my whole life probably before I could talk  I was singing. I would have to say my real journey began when my brother in law R.A, who is now my manager, suggested I go on Sunday Best.

Since beginning your journey in music, what has been the greatest life lesson you have learned?

The greatest life lesson I've learned is how to say what I mean nicely and how to separate business and ministry. I understand that as much as this is ministry, it is also my job and I've found a medium to accomplish both.

Musically who have been biggest influences and why?

I have many influences one being my mentor Donald Lawrence because I'm huge on lyrics and he is an amazing writer. Also I love how much of a perfectionist he is when it comes to tone and performance. Ella Fitzgerald, Cher, Tina Turner, Billie Holiday and Judy Garland are also on the top of my list of influences because their voices and techniques are so unique.  They all have voices that you don’t expect to come out of them which I really admire. Kim Burrell is another big influence but surprisingly not because of her sound or vocal ability even though those two aspects of her gift are amazing. When Kim dropped her debut album it was around the time I had lost my soprano range and thought that I was done as a singer. When I heard her tone it was so similar to what I was learning to embrace about my own "new voice," it caused me to realize that my sound would set me apart.

Name three artists you dream of working with in the future and why those three?

The three artists I'd dream of working with would be Kirk Franklin, Donald Lawrence and The Walls Group. The reason I want to work with Kirk Franklin and Donald Lawrence is because they are amazing writers. The reason I want to work with the Walls Group is because they remind me so much of my family and I when we were younger.  Growing up we always sang together and came in a bunch. If you saw one more than likely you saw all. 

As a contestant on Sunday Best, what was the easiest and most difficult part about being on the show?

As a contestant on Sunday Best I would have to say the easiest part was singing. Although I didn't have the range like everyone else, I knew I could stand on my own two feet. Even though I couldn't sing soprano I was a master screamer, so I knew I would be fine. lol I would have to say the most difficult part of being a contestant on the show was the schedule we were kept on. While being on the show there was no such thing as sleep and we barely had enough time to eat. It was also hard for me being around so many new people while suffering from a major social anxiety disorder. The show was tool that actually helped me to heal from the disorder.

What message do you aim to send out consistently when presenting your ministry through song?

The message I aim to send out is that some things are simply a part of life and to stop blaming the devil for everything. If he is the blame for all the bad in your life that means he's doing his job. Are you doing yours? As Christians there is something that is called Christian responsibility. You must stop just living from day to day and give life. You are responsible for someone making it into the kingdom. Get out of yourself and go get somebody else! And lastly, to make sure your relationship with God is in check rather than your religion or denomination.

What was the musical inspiration and desired sound for your first album, Latice Crawford?

My musical inspiration and desired sound for this album honestly was, who is Latice Crawford? I wanted people to know there was more to me than Sunday Best and my rendition of Peace Be Still. I wanted people to see that I am a talented singer and song writer.  People have often compared me to Whitney Houston and told me that I'm the Whitney of gospel music. Even though that is a great compliment I accept, I wanted people to know that I'm not Whitney, I'm Latice.

Seeing how you wrote seven of the ten songs featured on your debut album, what was your creative writing process for this album?

I write from a very "real life" perspective. I have never been the type of writer to only write about the happy part of being a Christian . You know the "God and life is so great because I praise Him" because that's not my story. Not saying that I didn't have good days, but I've lived through a lot of pain and I've had to learn how to be happy in the mess. That's real deliverance to me, being in a situation but not letting it consume you, being shaken but not stirred, afflicted but not affected, finding your peace in the storm and from victim to victor knowing that even if your circumstances don't change God still can. That is the place I aim and strive to always write from. 

As someone who does not fit the conventional gospel mold in look and sound, has it been difficult for you to advance forward in the gospel music industry?

It hasn't been difficult for me to advance in the gospel music industry because of my sound or look. Surprisingly, people accept it and those who don't either keep their opinion to themselves or because of my busyness I fail to hear what they are saying. I've always been comfortable being me and showing people who I really am. I have learned that people really respect honesty. People may like when people are fake but they respect honesty. Given the choice between the two I choose respect over being liked. I'd say my biggest setback is my decision not to do any and every opportunity presented. I say no to a lot because it just doesn't fit well with who I am, want to be and where I am trying to advance my career. I'm aware that this is still an industry even though it has the word gospel in front of it.

As the wife of fellow gospel music artist Jeff Spain, how do the both of you balance two thriving careers while still making certain that you maintain a healthy relationship?

Jeff and I are still learning that technique. We have different roles as husband and wife and as parents. I think we've made it this far because I don't expect him to do my part and he doesn't expect me to do his. Our schedules usually just work out, so that when he's away my schedule isn't as hectic and when I'm away he I able to hold it down. There are a lot of times we take Josh with us on a gig, to a photo shoot or to the studio. Thank God we have a child that understands this life because he's been in it for his whole little life. We also do a lot of family nights and use FaceTime and Skype quite often which works great for us.

As a mother, wife, artist and accessories designer, how do you juggle all four daunting tasks, while ensuring no area of your life is left lacking?

I do juggle a lot and being perfectly honest there are times things are left lacking. The dishes sometimes don't get washed, we may have to eat out, and those earrings just have to wait. I've learned timing is everything and so very important. There are times I only focus on my music and other times I set everything to the side just to spend time with my family. Many times I have spent the weekend at my parents house without my son or husband so that I can focus on my creativity and making accessories. I have a very supportive and helpful husband, family and handful of friends that babysit and understand when I just need me time.

How did the idea and fruition of your accessory line come about and how has the journey been thus far?

I'm still working on my accessory line. It's not officially out but I've always been a ball of creativity so it just came naturally to me. I have actually been making jewelry since I was like 8 or 9 years old.

Where do you see your ministry and career progressing to in the next five years?

I see my ministry expanding outside of singing. I want to do a cooking show, a cook book, a fully luched accessory line, a clothing line, makeup line, nail polish line, and a series of children's books. I love all things creative! Some people may say that these things aren't ministry but I believe that people are ministered to in different ways. Sometimes I don't want to hear about Jesus until my stomach stops growling. And as much as I want to come to God just as I am, give me a little blush first because my soul and face can't both be ugly. lol. Shoot these lace fronts have seemingly become a ministry. Ha Maybe I should do a wig line, too !!

Where can people go to purchase your music, and book you to come to an event?

If you'd like to purchase my album you can do so on iTunes, Amazon, Walmart, Best Buy, any where that sells gospel music. If you'd like to stay in touch with me I'm on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and SocialCam.  Just google my name L-A-T-IC-E (there's no R) just Latice Crawford and all of my pages will come up. All booking inquiries can be sent to booklatice@gmail.com, and all interview requests can be sent to info@1creativeconcept.com


As we can all see Latice is an amazing woman of God. Please go out and support her in all that she is and will be doing in the future. Below you will find a video of her latest single, Through It All, please listen and request it at your local radio station.  Please go like the Pentecostal Perspective Facebook page, follow the Pentecostal Perspective’s Instagram and Twitter pages, and share this edition of Pentecostal Spotlight. God Bless!!!



Friday, June 13, 2014

Pentecostal Review - Ricky Dillard and New G "Amazing"



Hey everyone!!! In today's gospel music era few choirs are able to maintain longevity and relevance like Ricky Dillard and New G. With that being written, it is with great pleasure and excitement that I am writing a review on the latest project of this lasting and remarkable choir. The occasion on which this album was recorded was very monumental, twenty-five years together as a choir. Even though this was a monumental moment, I am glad Ricky Dillard recorded mostly all new songs. The recording of majority new songs,  shows that their ability to embrace the past while moving forward into the future of choir music. From start to finish this album is outstanding and has a lasting effect on you. So without further ado, I present my review of Ricky Dillard and New G's "Amazing."  

Amazing begins with a few words from Ricky Dillard called the "Ricky's Interlude."  In the interlude Ricky explains that he made it through the twenty-five years of his musical career through grace. Which is a very simple yet profound statement at the same time.

The musical portion of the album begins with the uptempo song "Celebrate the King."  The beat alone commands you to begin clapping along. Once the song started, I was pleasantly surprised to hear that this was, friend to Pentecostal Perspective, Johnell Nicholas's original song. Realizing this created a sense of intrigue and excitement to see what sense of flair would be added by New G.  Ever since my initial listen, I have loved how interactive the song is and it's call and response format. This rendition lived up to the format laid down as a foundation by Johnell. Once the choir begun singing the chorus, I was blown away by their strength and power. This showed that New G is definitely one of, if not the best community choirs out right now and in history. The precision on the bridge was simply stellar and set the stage for a great groove to end the song. The choir sounded amazing on the vamp and took the song to the next level. At the end of the song, you felt the praise erupt in the building. The song created a great sense of anticipation for the rest of the album and provided an amazing listening experience. This was very well thought out choice to begin the album.

The next song "Grace" has a different sound to it and takes a few minutes to decipher what direction Ricky Dillard and New G are going with the song.  The words of the song are mentally stimulating, in the fact that it causes you to contemplate on the undeserved grace of God. The song is very wordy which causes it to be very difficult to sing along with during the initial listen. The song overall is enjoyable but not very memorable or lasting in your mind.

Gospel music star Byron Cage begins the slow tempo song "Grateful." In the song, Byron shows a different side to his voice and abilities. Some of the runs done by Byron not only blew me away, but caused me to look at him in a different positive light. Once the New G joined in, they once agained proved their ability to masterfully sing a slow tempo song with pure and genuine emotion evoked into the song. I can see this song being sung as a sermonic selection, because of the message and the atmosphere it creates. Awesome song from beginning to end that awakens a sense of gratefulness in your heart and mind.

The next song is the single taking the airways by storm "Amazing." I thought it was very fitting that song was made the title track for the album simply because it is a great song.  I simply love this song, from the lyrics, to the sound, to the vocalists, they all combined created an instantaneous love from me after my initial listening during their performance at the Stellar Awards this past January. I adore the call response format of the song, which mixes the sounds of contemporary christian and modern gospel choirs. I was really overjoyed at the fact that the version on the album was extended, and included additional lyrics and an exhortation by the lead soloist Tiffany Joy. During the vamp every time she sang "the Bible says", she further drew me into the song and created anticipation on what scripture she was going to quote. Before I heard this version, I was already in love with the song, but the extended version caused me to fall head over heels. The title not only fits the lyrics, but also the essence and sound. This is one of the best songs off the album hands down.

On the song "Everything", your ears are greeted with the sound of a drum machine and hand claps. Because of this, you definitely feel the churchy essence of this song that is sure to follow. The music on the song is really superb to say the least. Even though New G sounded good on the song, it didn't fit their identity as a choir. I enjoyed the song but isn't a favorite from the album.

The song "Always There" begins with the superbly talented Le'Andria Johnson singing a solo. Her vocal abilities are on great display throughout this song. The song style, slow tempo and melody fit her voice like a glove. The addition of New G to Le'Andria's voice is a perfect match, both New G and Le'Andria do a magnificent job, complimenting each other and making the other sound sharpened. This is  a song that reminds you of the consistency and true faithfulness of God.

"I Believe" starts off very uptempo and bounceful. The song has a very good message about believing in God and trusting the word that He has told you. The song is not too extraordinary, but is one I can see many choirs singing for offering. The addition of Deandre Patterson to the vamp of the song was a nice touch. The vamp creates an interactive sing along vibe that is easy to catch on to. This is an enjoyable song that's not very memorable. 

On the "Father Charles G. Hayes Interlude", you are given a listening ear to this legend in gospel music opening for his radio broadcast of yesteryear. I commend Ricky Dillard for making the choice to celebrate the memory and legacy of such an amazing and legendary man, whom shoulders Ricky stands on today. 

I was slightly taken aback by the start of "Higher." To move from such a touching memorial to an intense beat, really did not create a smooth transition. Once I got over my shock, I thought it was very innovative of Ricky Dillard to create a song influenced by the style of music called go-go originating from the DC, Maryland, and Virginia area of the country. Once the choir began to sing, the movement of the music and lyrical arrangement reminded me of the song recorded by the Greater Allen Cathedral, entitled "Greater". I really enjoyed the groove set by this song. New G showed that they are still the masters of modulations on the vamp. I thought it was very empowering for those within the DMV area, when Ricky began to call out the prominent churches, and radio stations within the area. This is definitely a head bobbing type of song, that will be an enjoyable experience everytime it is listened to by. 

With a title like "Be Weak" the song creates a sense of intrigue just at the glance, especially with so many songs written and recorded about maintaining a sense of strength as a believer. Knowing that in gospel music, with a song title like this, there aren't many places you can go lyrically and thematically, it was great to hear 2 Corinthians 12:9 referenced. I really enjoyed the group sounding aspect of the song, because it showed the versatility of New G and their ability to be a chameleon, especially after hearing the way they sung on the previous song, "Higher." Their ability to transition from group singing to choral singing as they did on the chorus is top notch. New G not only showed their ability to transition from song to song, but also from moment to moment. Once again, proving why they are one of the best. I love the build up that was created on the vamp of the song, it created an emotional crescendo effect and totally drew you in. This is definitely one of the most memorable and lasting songs from the album. This is a song that would proceed a praise break in any service. 

Once "Stay With God" begins, you hear the 80/90's mass choir essence felt. There is nothing like that sound and is such a wonderful addition to the album. Even the soloist who happened to be the phenomenal Lillian Lloyd, embraced and brought the 90's power choir sound. I found it very impressive that she was able to break out of the shouting, fast pace style of singing she has become famous leading. When I thought the song could get no better, the song progressed to the vamp and took the song to another level.  Lillian Llloyd proved that she is still the adlib queen of today's generation of gospel choir music. She struck an internal chord when she sung "You're anointed to try again". This song will wreck any church that it is sung in. You know that a praise break occured especially with the way the song ended.  Definitely one of the best songs off the album. 

The precision and control that begins "The Covenant Medley," blew my breath away. The first song had a Detroit vintage sound to it. There is nothing like a simple slow song with only the accompaniment of an organ and drum, as displayed in the first two minutes. The transition into the second song of the medley was very smoothly done, not just in the musical aspect but in the lyrical content as well. They then transition into the hit "There Is No Way" originally sung by Milton Brunson and The Thompson Community Choir, and remade by Ricky Dillard in the Unplugged...The Way Church Used to Be Lead album. New G once again displayed that they are the masters of modulation in the repeating of the vamp. Ricky Dillard and New G then progressed to the song "Things Will Work Out For Me", and showed that the choir's, strength and power from yesteryear are still very much with them today. They ended the medley with transitioning to their song "Through It All", and did not disappoint in the reminiscing of yesteryear. This was a wise way to incorporate classics without making an album full of songs previously recorded by the choir.

This is an amazing album from start to finish. After listening to the entire album you definitely realize two things.  Firstly, twenty-five years has done Ricky Dillard and New G well, and secondly, there are definitely more years to come from this sensational choir. Please go out and support this album, I guarantee you will not be disappointed. Please go like the Pentecostal Perspective Facebook page, follow Pentecostal Perspective’s Instagram and Twitter pages, and share this edition of Pentecostal Review. God Bless!!!