Joy Enriquez
Atmosphere of Heaven

Joy Enriquez has had some mainstream success, and was in the middle of making her next album when she heard the call of God in her heart to go another direction.

Joy Enriquez The result is this must-hear project, Atmosphere of Heaven, a praise and worship surprise that abounds in joy. Enriquez’s husband, Rodney Jerkins together with Chip Dixon produce most of the album, with helping along the way from Aaron Pearce, Jean-Luc Lajoie and Derek "DOA" Allen.

Things get started with the simple praise song, "In His Name", which is backed by all live instruments, and features Enriquez out front as worship leader. Her impressive soprano vocals are understated on this praise single. (Don’t worry, she gets plenty of room to stretch them out elsewhere on the project!)

Darkchild throw in their signature sound with Freddy and Rodney Jerkins jointly producing "Been So Good", a dance track through and through. Enriquez sings the chorus with synths matching her every syllable. The joint slows down and flows into the lead single, "Get To Know Him", genuine witnessing piece draped with an infectious groove Enriquez's lovely vocals. Rodney puts his two cents in with a rap on "Don’t Let Go".

The midtempo "Highest Praise" moves into pop territory. Given the proper exposure, the song is a given for church service inclusion. "Fill This Place" fits along side as a pop-tinged song of worship sweetly sung by Enriquez. Dixon provides all the music with Tim Stewart adding acoustic and lead guitars. Enriquez also includes the popular worship hymn, "Revive Us Again" in both English and Spanish.

Joy EnriquezAaron Pearce writes "Come Into My Life", a worship veined number with smooth R&P vibes. Pearce also sings backing vocals. Derek Allen's acoustic guitar serves as the only accompaniment for Enriquez on the properly-titled "Simple".

Enriquez sings and makes each song her own even amidst the variety of stylings on the project. "Take My Hand", produced by Jean-Luc Lajoie, fits right into that Adult Contemporary radio or Top 40 radio slot. "I Knew (Wedding Song)" is a song that she dedicates to her husband, making it a sure-fire inclusion for all weddings.

Joy Enriquez has found her niche with Atmosphere of Heaven. Mass cross cultural appeal, solid songwriting, and on point music qualify it one of the best, if not the most unheralded, releases of 2006.

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Producers: Various
album release date: April, 2006

— reviewed by Stan North and Dwayne Lacy

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