Greg O'Quin 'N Joyful Noyze
So often God gives us a Word for others, and then we find out that it is also meant for ourselves. Sometime it just takes a while to realize that.Producer: Greg O'Quin
album release date: August, 2001
Such is the case with Greg O'quin.
It's been a minute since O'Quin shook the radio charts with "I Told The Storm".
But storms have been no stranger to the veteran singer/songwriter. That's abundantly evident all through his junior effort, cleverly titled Cliches.
Nicely packaged with visuals, most of the project's 17 tracks take their name from commonly-used phrases the trite sayings of our day. O'Quin takes the shallow and makes it deeper, giving a spiritual twist to their meaning. For the most part, he succeeds.
True to O'Quin's pattern on previous projects, he comes delivering a combo of urban delights and contemporized ballads with churchy flava, ably supported by his tight Joyful Noyze vocal ensemble and some fine studio production.
This time more than before however, the songs are colored with the pain, the triumph and the joy that comes with experience and suffering.
Great moments come on songs such as "Singin' 'n The Rain" with Machelle Robinson soaring into high regions over Todd Parsnow's guitar. "U Complete Me" is a sweet reflective ballad, a personal prayer expressing love to Jesus Christ that Pheddra Evans takes lead on.
On the urban side, you can almost tell from the titles which ones will get you moving. "Bounce", "Don't Make No Sense" and "Understand?" each follow a similar beat pattern heavy synths, looped rhythms and O'Quin's producer-driven ad libs.
Notably, O'quin completely re-packages his "I Told The Storm" hit, transforming it into a percolating urban gem with an overhaul of the now-familiar lyrics, and Evans again spinning some lovely warbles on lead solo.
There's also several cuts that could be considered derivatives from that hit.
"Uhn-Uhn!" is one such, as is "The Victory Song". Here, O'Quin and Michaelle Wingate trade leads over Joyful Noyze's repeated patter groove. The song says, "I'm not a victim anymore, the storm is over now, it's over now".
There's lots here to dig into, some wonderful songs, great singing and flat-out ministry that deserves an audience.
Paradygm Music / World Wide Gospel
reviewed by Stan North —
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