Pastor Michael A. Lowery
& The Berean Christian Fellowship
Well Watered Worship
Pastor Michael A. Lowry & The Berean Christian Fellowship may not be your most well-known artist on the circuit, but if you’re one who thrives on strong praise and worship, then this group belongs on your hot list.We bow down
Based at his Las Vegas church, Pastor Lowry and his small chorale come armed with a sling full of praise arrows, and all of them recorded live. While certainly vocals-based, Well Watered Worship is nevertheless enhanced by the playing of David Blakely on keys, Derrick Hall on organ, and plenty guitar/bass and percussion jamming when required, from others.
Project highlights? There’s no shortage, and all of it is enhanced by some superb 'up-close' recording with plenty of individual mics that convey an intimacy and a 'right-there' feel.
“I Will Bless the Lord at All Times” features the clear tones of Sebrena Jones, backed up by Lowery (the trio of Ted, Derek and Michael Lowery). Based on Psalms 34, the cut rides nicely on a catchy keyboard motif.
On other songs (“As Long As I Live” with reprise, Michael Lowery’s composition “I’m Available”), the vocals are right in front, with vertical praise so intense that you are easily drawn into the worship. Lyrics are the focus here, and the band, while always strong in support, correctly defers.
“Now Unto Him” begins with easy, acoustic percussion from Gerald Jones before Derek Lowery and Robin Hodge-Williams combine in close harmony on lead, with the chorale deftly tossing in phrases. Mid-track the tempo picks up as the groove becomes fixed with added guitar and keyboards. Hodge-Williams then continues alone on lead with the first reprise, passing the vocal baton to Michael Lowery on the second reprise, an inventive arrangement that incorporates the spelling out of “I L-O-V-E U” into the previous lyrics.
Some of the simplest songs are also some of the most powerful. “We Bow Down” and “There Is None Like You” are in that camp, demonstrating that true worship need not be difficult:
We fall down
We lay down
We kneel down
We bow down
Here’s a project with staying power, crammed with praise gems.
Producer: Duane Murray
album release date: Spring, 2001
Mike Lowery Music
reviewed by Stan North —
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