Now More Than Ever ...Worship
After enduring the total loss of both her singing and speaking voice following her debut project, God has healed Joann Rosario and her faith has become stronger, culminating in the release of a stunning sophomore release, Now More Than Ever ...Worship.
Rosario enlists the help of her mentor, Fred Hammond, along with Kene 'Ghost' Bell, Asaph Alex Ward, Donald Lawrence, Michael Anthony (Mookie) Taylor and Steve 'Stone' Huff to fashion the project.
And it’s Rosario again showcasing her solid writing skills, writing ten of the thirteen songs on the album.
No matter the tempo, the theme of the album is worship, and clearly, Rosario shows herself to be a worship leader first, and then an artist. "Sing of Your Goodness", produced by Hammond, is a beautifully written R&P ballad that features a few of her old cohorts, with Noel Hall stepping in on keys, Tommie Walker securing the programming and Joey Woolfalk handling guitar duties. Throw in some smooth RFC-like vocals, and you have a hit.
The fiesta continues with the Huff-produced "Open My Heart Lord". Rosario’s lead and background vocals weave wonderfully throughout this urban cut as Huff adds a flute sample alongside a percolating drum beat.
The collaboration with Alex Asaph Ward works marvelously, with his work on the lead single, "I Hear You Say", being a diverse musical journey all in the space of the one song. Starting with contemporary pop vibe, Rosario sweetly sings to Ward’s keyboards and strings, with a soft pocket beat by Marvin McQuitty, before the song smoothly flows into a gorgeous Gospel chorus, making it beautiful from start to finish.
Ward protégé Edward Brown writes the chill, "My Desire", with Rosario expressing her utmost desire to live and stay planted in God’s presence. "Life So Wonderful" is a funky midtempo song produced by Ward what demonstrates Rosario’s ability to flow with any style. Daniel Johnson and Mary Shaw add polish with background vocals.
"Cuando Reposo En Ti (When I Enter Your Rest)" is a live song recorded at Rosario’s church. It is evident that she is connecting with audience and leading them into the presence of God, and even if you cannot understand Spanish, the spirit of the song will move you.
This is a triumphant return by Joann Rosario. Her voice back and she has built upon her debut release. How can we not realize the urgency to worship God more than ever before when we listen to Now More Than Ever ...Worship?.
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Verity Records / FHammond Music
— reviewed by Dwayne Lacy —
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