Monday, March 14, 2011


Artist – Israel Houghton

Album – Love God Love People – The London Sessions

Label – Integrity Music

Street Date – August 31, 2010

Album Length – 12 Tracks, 67 Minutes, 25 Seconds

Genre – Gospel/ Pop

IPod Pick – Love Rev

WINNER - Best Pop/Contemporary Gospel Album. Grammys, 2011.

I'm rolling my eyes real bad hoping they don't fall off as I write and I'm praying I stay positive all throughout this review. It's not that I have anything against Mr Houghton. Not at all. He has a crossover style very few in the industry can handle and his voice. . . very unique. But not again, can we have something fresh and not the usual sound we are used to, Mr. Houghton? It might be quite annoying to be able to predict the funky gospel beat Israel is always ready to offer on a new record.

When I first heard details about this album, like that it was going to be recorded at the famous and envied by artist from various mainstream genres Abbey Road in London, I was so excited and I couldn't wait for a listen but at my listen I just had to skim through quick. I wouldn't say I was disappointed, the lyrics are good, real, transparent and God- focused. I hear someone say but that's all that really matters but sorry I object. In an age where music is evolving and we have many of it around, I think Christians have to roll up their sleeves in hard work to bring something fresh and catchy yet not deviating from the message of the gospel. If you say we have more work to do than our mainstream contemporaries, oh yes I agree, absolutely.

With my reservations aside, lyrically this album centers on loving people as God loves us and Israel Houghton deals with this sensitive topic well. Talking about people being bothered about how slow their internet connection is and their Pizza delivery not being on time while some are dying of HIV and smitten by mosquitoes elsewhere on 'Love rev'. The album takes a slower pace on 'Others' which is a prayer/worship to God requesting for his enablement to love others as he loves us. 'You Hold My World' is a beautiful worship tune soon to become a favourite after your first listen. 'Love God Love People' Sounds like something off a 80's Michael Jackson record. The mix of genres on 'You won't Let Go' doesn't just work well in the ears. Another highlight is 'Our God' an electro- gospel pop (which is actually a Chris Tomlin cover) that declares the praise of our God. Veteran artiste Kirk Franklin appears on the bang bang beaty 'Mercies'. The beloved Fred Hammond surprises us on the RnB 'Surprises' with his amazing voice. The album closes with a mellow worshipful moment in the style of Darlene Zschech with the track ' Hossana (Be Lifted Higher)' which ends in a beautiful choral chant in the style of choral artiste like Anthony Way. It's a beautiful sound I tell you.

All in all, Mr. Houghton has brought something worthwhile to the table again. It's already got a Grammy and I'm sure you don't want to be left out in this movement to 'Love God. Love People'.
P.S – I Hope I was positive :D

Sent from my BlackBerry wireless device from MTN

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