Houston-bred, The Walls Group is the epitome of this good home training after one listen of their debut project Fast Forward on the Fo Yo Soul/RCA Recordings label.
Comprised of siblings Darrel, Rhea, Alic AKA Paco and Ahjah, these are just four of the eight children born to Roger and Alicia Walls. This real-to-life Christian kindred family soul brings more than their youthfulness to the recording but importantly their Godly zeal. Working with gospel music juggernaut Kirk Franklin, The Walls Group debut project is liken to Pop Rocks candies: sweet, tasty, and it sizzles!
Their chart-topping "Perfect People" set gospel stations ablaze with their infectious pop sound while knitted together with novel harmonies and atypical lyrics. It likely forced many to ask, "Who are these kids?" a question that was undoubted asked about other sibling groups like The Jackson Five and The Clark Sisters before they too became famous.
The project opens stalwartly with "Love on the Radio." With a beginning reminiscent of Franklin's hit "He's Able," the audacious and gutsy tune is an awesome musical appeal to DJs to simply play their music. In June (2014), the single debuted at #1 on both iTunes and AmazonMP3 Christian/Gospel chart.
"Big Brother" is a gladdening song which follows suit with an unexpected harmonica feature and rhythmic changes with lyrics exclaiming Jesus. Proving they are more than bubble gum gospel singers, "Great is Your Love" written by the eldest of the Walls four-some, Darrel, expresses their endearing sincerity to the almighty. Upon listening, you are able to attest these youngsters vocal talents are optimum! Darrel's songwriting talents can also be heard on the gallant "Freedom."
Satisfaction is one commodity most people tend to struggle with. Yet in "Satisfied," the Walls quartet explains where real satisfaction should be placed. Penned by Franklin, this is a message that would not only resonate with their generation but their parents' age group as well.
Yessuh! That's the first (kind of) word that comes to mind after a listen to "God on My Mind." This captivating tune features singer/actress Brandy and even samples a portion of her "Always on My Mind" from her 1994 Brandy album. The vocal prowess of The Walls Group siblings combined with the comeliness of Brandy's unique vocalization, this single simply ensnares you with luring lyrical content about why God is so good and why He deserves to be thought of continually.
Another Grammy award-winner also makes an appearance of this inaugural project: Lecrae. The "Halleujah" rapper joins the family-four on "High." Very nostalgic of 80's group Art of Noise's instrumental hit "Moments of Love," Walls and Lecrae blend brilliantly on the not-bargained-for, moderate-tempo track.
"Beautiful" is exactly what the title describes. It's an enthralling tune where The Walls women come front and center on lead vocals, with Franklin himself making a cameo. It beautifully captures a serene worship moment towards the song's close. "Anything and Everything" is a tranquil closing to a brilliant opening project. Its loftiness, accompanied by beautiful stringed instruments makes it all the more lush. Their sincere harmonies dogmatically state, "We mean this thing!"
From spoken word, bangin' lyrics, and enthralling beats all under the guidance of Kirk Franklin The Walls Group will garner not only youth and young adults' appeal, but quite possibly their parents too.
Why? Because their sound transcends age; it ministers to the soul.
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Fo Yo Soul Recordings / RCA
— review by John Burton Jr. —
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