NorCal Mass Choir
Let's Praise Him

NorCal Mass Choir CDNorCal Mass Choir is no stranger to choir aficionados. Their several national releases over the years have drawn many to their sound that’s filled with solid songwriting, worshipful solos and their distinctive mass vocal sounds.

Recorded live in 2000 at Union City Apostolic Church, Let’s Praise Him, the choir’s first project on their own Baywind Music label, has veteran Aaron Lopez once again finessing production as NorCal delivers a resounding set of tunes.

Songs such as “Take Me Jesus” and “Just For Me” reflect the vibrant choir praise & worship scene in the northern California area. Soloists Ricky Allmon and Vonnie Lopez respectively handle leads on these two cuts, and also elsewhere on the project.

West Coast Choirs
Click on the above individual CD images to take you the the respective reviews.
Traditional cuts are not lacking on the album. The opening song and title cut “Let’s Praise Him” with Donald “Chico” Eddens on lead has a familiar, comfortable sound, setting the tone. And “I Thank You Lord” and “Shout Now” (with San Franklin-Stancil) have ‘churchtime’ marked all over them.

Eddens returns on “Mighty God” to spur this enjoyable Latin inflected composition from Randy Phillips into wonderful choir spin. Another beaut is Laird Sillimon’s mid-tempo “Lead Me”. Hector Soto (see album review) takes the mic after the choir’s opening sectional interplay.

The choir’s tenderly rendered cover of Lawrence Matthews’ “Because of Who You Are” with its trio of soloists trading leads, is another enjoyable piece.

On the instrumental tip, those who have followed NorCal Mass over the years will recognize familiar contributors such as the renowned Carl Wheeler, Derrick Hall and John Smith. They work together well as unit, showing an ability to handle the diverse styles the choir enjoys delivering.

Baywind Music has a sling of recent and upcoming releases worth exploring. NorCal Mass, their flagship artist, is leading the way.

Producer: Aaron Lopez
album release date: March, 2001
Baywind Music

— reviewed by Stan North

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