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For the last six years, RiZen has been a powerhouse in the world of female groups. With strong vocals framed traditionally, the group has experienced success with two Stellar awards to their credit, including the coveted "New Artist of the Year" award in 2004.

With two projects under their belts (each winning a Stellar) the Saginaw, MI based group returns with several new elements. Now a sisterly duo, Adriann and Aundrea Lewis launch their third effort titled Free, their first album on Verity Records.

CD  The sisters Lewis enlist a new production team and produce a new sound for the latest chapter in their career, veering from the traditional to move with a more contemporary flair. Award-winning producer Aaron Lindsey handles the bulk of the production, adding his touch to over half of the album's songs.

Famed producer Daniel Weatherspoon lends his touch to "He'll Make A Way", a punchy, saucy, and syncopated jam that showcases the group's new musical identity. Ay'ron Lewis joins the production team on "Dance". Penned by Lewis, Adrianne Lewis and James Fortune, this track does what it says and makes you want to dance, for sure.

The album's title track is both urban and infectious, showcasing the sisters' ability to jam in a more contemporary environment.

Online Jukebox

Check out the online jukebox for Rizen's Free.

Link to Jukebox

RiZen teams with Grammy and Stellar award winner Fred Hammond for the rock-tinged "My Praise Ridiculous", which works well for the duo. This combination comes together for the worship-filled "Live to Love", which features Hammond on background vocals. Penned by Hammond, the song speaks to God's dedication and commitment to His people. Filled with passionate lyrics and vocal delivery, this song shows RiZen's ability to worship with the best of them.

The duo goes into new territory with "All I Need". As a deliberate throwback to the Motown era, RiZen pays homage to their Michigan roots with this funky and sassy track. For all of the adaptations to their sound, they do remember their traditional roots with "Worked It Out" and the Deon Kipping-penned "Look Back", which are both straight Sunday morning church.

It's a new sound, a new day, and a new label for RiZen. For all that's changed, their vocal quality and passion for strong delivery remains constant. Free is a great launching pad for all of that.

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Production: Aaron Lindsey, Fred Hammond, Daniel Witherspoon, Ay'Ron Lewis
album release date: Oct, 2009
Verity Gospel Music Group

— review by Gerard Bonner

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