The Power Of One
Along with his group New Breed, Houghton has become one of the industry's driving forces, cross cultural and musical boundaries with a universal presentation that unites the Kingdom and empowers its listeners. With two Grammy awards and multiple Stellar and Dove awards to his credit, Houghton is back with his first solo effort in 12 years, aptly titled The Power of One (read our exclusive interview!).
The thirteen-track effort serves as Houghton's first studio effort of the decade and really showcases his heart to reach the world.
An avid songwriter, producer, and instrumentalist, Houghton demonstrates each of these gifts throughout the project, penning or co-writing nearly every song. While New Breed stands aside for the time being, Houghton still features familiar talents and colleagues to give the album a familiar yet fresh feel. Longtime music director Aaron Lindsey lends his talents, co-writing five of the album's tracks. Famed singer/songwriter Tommy Sims also partners with Houghton on a number of cuts including the reggae-tinged "Surely Goodness", while fully penning the energetic "Better to Believe".
Both Lindsey and Sims join Houghton on the funky "Just Wanna Say", a high-powered track that musically has Israel colliding with an OutKast vibe for a musical masterpiece.
The Power Of One has no shortage of star power. tobyMac makes his presence known on the pop-flavored "You Found Me", while Chevelle Franklyn lends her vocal gift to "Surely Goodness". Erica and Tina Campbell of Mary Mary add a moving gospel feel to the gorgeous ballad "Every Prayer".
Houghton teams with labelmate Ricardo Sanchez to present a rendition of the popular "Moving Forward", which was recently recorded by Hezekiah Walker & LFC.
Perhaps larger than the star power however, is the fluidity of the album's message. As embodied in the title track, Houghton encourages believers to realize that every individual has the power to change the world, one person at a time.
Equally noteworthy is Houghton's ability to authentically present each piece in a variety of applications. Houghton's musical dexterity is showcased perhaps more in this effort than any other work, which admittedly, is a bold statement. From the classic rock feel of "Sing (Redemption's Song)" to the 80s pop, Phil Collins-flavored "I Receive" to the gospel-tinged "Saved by Grace", Houghton proves that he is comfortable with any presentation of the gospel message and raises the bar for listeners to embrace that movement.
Make no mistake, The Power Of One is a true musical gem and has nuggets that will keep you mining it for a long time to come. This is definitely one of the year's bright spots and deserves prime real estate in your musical collection.
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— reviewed by Gerard Bonner —
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