As one of Gospel’s premiere artists, CeCe Winans stands alone in her ability to successfully bring multiple styles to the table from project to project.
Welcome to the place where He shows His face
Oh, worship in spirit and in truth
Guitar work from Carlos Pennell and various chunky island percussion dominates on the peppy “Just Like You, Jesus”, where Winans puts to song a prayer that expresses her desire to walk, pray and be like Jesus. Melinda Dolittle’s backing vocal support adds the right touch of style.
Following in like theme is “Heart Like Yours”, a ballad based on Ezekiel 11:19. Over a gentle chorus from Born Again Church Choir, Winans again sings with an awareness of and a sensitivity to the beauty of the lyric.
“Mercy Said No”, first recorded by Greg Long, finds a special spot on the album, for Winans dedicates it to her brother Ronald in celebration and thanks to God for miraculously restoring him from his deathbed after a heart attack several years ago.
Winans has made a habit of finding gorgeous song material and bringing them to life. She does that again her with John Ragsdale Jr.’s “We Thirst For You”. Don’t be surprised if the tenderly infectious melody makes the rounds of hit cuts from this project. LeAnne Palmore, Jerard Woods and Jovaun Woods add strongly rendered backing vocals.
Mellowed out worship is the focus of much of the middle part of the project. Winans demonstrates that simplicity can sometimes be best on her cover of the well known hymn “How Great Thou Art”. Then on “You Are Holy”, over layers and beds of sustained and plucked strings, she subtley deconstructs the hymn “Holy, Holy, Holy”, fashioning it into small phrases taken from the text of Revelation 4:8.
(An added bonus to the CD project is the inclusion of DVD elements full performances of "Alabaster Box", "No One" and "More Than I Wanted" from her prior release, plus behind-scenes footage of Winans on tour and backstage. The DVD bonus is limited to the first 100,000 copies of the audio CD sold).
Ably demonstrating that indeed, worship is where her heart is, CeCe Winans puts her both her praise-laden heart and her gloriously gifted musical soul into this recording.
— reviewed by Stan North —
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