A Deeper Level
Former New Breed music director Aaron Lindsay joins Israel Houghton as co-producer and clearly the chemistry between the two remains potent. Stylistically, this project ranges from straight-up CCM to reggaeton to Gospel to a hint of Hip Hop. Don't dismay, all that is strictly within the bounds of the New Breed sound.
"Say So", an upbeat song from the pen of Houghton and Michael Gungor, has the makings of another service favorite with its catchy chorus. Reggaeton is the feel of "Long Life" and T Bone brings his authentic Latin flare to push this jam to a different level. This song is danceable and powerful with declaration straight from Psalms 91.
The heart of New Breed is exposed on this album, with their prayers and declarations dipped into song. "Deeper" is a guitar-heavy ballad with Israel calling to God to give them more of His heart #151;meaning that hearts are primed and in tune for those that God cares about. Darlene Zscech's prayer serves as a perfect intro for this one.
From the pen of Israel and wife Meleasa, "I Will Search for You" is a beautiful song that has acoustic feel of a passion song with a little vocal edge.
"Where Would I Be" is a ballad that speaks of the power of God's grace. The vocal arrangements, ad libs by Israel, Danielle Stephens and Johnson are on point and the lyrics are powerful.
Africa again gets love from Israel as South African native Neville Deietricks trades leads on "Identity", a song speaking of becoming more like God. The cut gives way to another song of identity, "I Know Who I Am". Worship artist Chris Tomlin co-writes with Israel and sings the bridge, delighting enthusiasts who love music that is vertically directed.
Do not overlook "You Are Not Forgotten" featuring the man Jonny Lang, and "So Come". So much to chew on.
After fasting for 40 days, Israel and New Breed have definitely stepped into a different place in music and in worship. A Deeper Level is the result and what a result it is. Can it get any better than this?
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— reviewed by Dwayne Lacy —
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