At The Revival
Now some may be a bit concerned when you realize the project is produced by Saadiq and Swing, however, lay those worries aside. Both Saadiq and Swing are die hard gospel music lovers and Cloud fans (Devante & Co getting their start as Little Cedric and the Hailey Singers). Their collaborative efforts result in a Clouds project reminiscent of the Quartet tradition.
This is a uniquely arranged CD, in that the lead soloist and quartet are in the FRONT ( I know this is a strange concept to some) allowing the music to serve as the accompaniment. Strange as it may seem, it works. The songs stand out as "messages in a bottle", carrying a power-packed punch.
Joe Ligon sets the pace with "Stop to Praise God", with an in your face reminder that "every day is a good day to stop and praise the Lord".
Quartet fans can get their tambourines, hand claps and foots stomps ready for "I'll Be Up There", and be prepared to hear Ligon in all of his glory unfurled on the infectious title track, "At the Revival". Leave it to Joe Ligon to weave a musical narrative that conjures images of tent camp meetings of long ago, complete with ringing bells and singing choirs and women in white and deacons in black and people RUNNING to get to church to hear the preacher preach. This song is destined for the repeat button.
The late Mike Cook (read obituary) is effective in his interpretation of "Hard Times" and delivers an outstanding performance on the Clouds standard "Walk Around Heaven All Day". ( I must admit, I was of the mindset that no one could touch Paul Beasley, but Cook is Beasley's even change).
The Clouds come current with "Jesus Kind of Man" and "Just Love Somebody", which will bring both admiration and a much greater respect from fans both old and new. Lastly, a fitting tribute is paid to the legacy and life of Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with a rousing version of "We Shall Overcome".
Fellow Cloudies can rejoice, this is music worth buying and even more, something to sing and shout about.
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— review by Gregory Gay —
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