Bishop Eric R. Figueroa &
The New Life Tabernacle Mass Choir
He's A Rock
New York’s Bishop Eric R. Figueroa and First Lady Doreen Figueroa, along with daughters Timiney Figeuroa-Canton, Anaysha Figueroa and son Eric R. Figueroa Jr. take vocal prominence on this Savoy project, along with the Godfather.
Supporting this cast is Bishop Figueroa’s New Life Tabernacle Choir, who bring their enthusiastic church choir sound into the mix.
Timiney we know, mostly from her time with Hezekiah Walker and the Love Fellowship Crusade Choir, soloing on hits “Come Home”, “Lord, Send Your Spirit Down” and “Calling My Name”.
She continues that vibe here, sending the two-part “When I See Jesus” into shimmering splendor when she enters the amidst the New Life Tabernacle Mass Choir backdrop. Wright also joins her rich vibrato with his own grit, and Minister Kervy Brown another LFCC mainstay makes the vocal textures showcased on the song that much more a buffet when he brings his lead in. Hey, even Aaron Hall adds a very brief vocal lick or two to the conclusion of the piece.
Younger sister Anaysha shines on the two cuts where she takes lead, showing the same raw anointing and clarity of tone that brought her notice with Danny Eason and the Abundant Life Crusade Choir. As usual with Anaysha, songs of pure worship and praise seem to find her, or more likely, she finds them. And she sings them like few else can. It’s not merely vocal acrobatics or dexterity of voice that draw you to this singer, it’s her spirit of worship that comes bursting from the CD. “Lord, I Love You” and “Love Lifted Me”, both written by Charles Minor, are hers.
Bishop Eric R. Figueroa and First Lady Doreen Figueroa each take their place on the project, with the Bishop handling some traditional cuts (“He Cares For Me”, co-written by David Caton, Jason Hendrickson and Twinkie Clark) and “Will You Be Ready”, from the joint pens of Caton and Danny Eason. Organist Butch Heyward’s “You Stand” is handled by the First Lady, where she shows the same vocal gift that she’s passed on to her daughters.
The crowning glory of the album is the anthemic worship piece, “Lord Your Favor”, from the pen of Timiney’s husband, David Caton. The entire Figueroa family fronts the song, both as a powerful ensemble and then with individual solo leads.
As for Rev. Wright, he offers up a couple of songs in standard NY mass fashion, taking lead on the rousing title track that also features a punctuated duet from the Figueroa sisters. He also handles the mic on catchy and jumpy made-for-choir cut, “You Brought Me Through This”.
Ending the project is a nicely ad libbed cut, "A Miracle" written by NY writer David Bratton. Wright, Timiney, Kirvey Brown and Rev. Raymond Whitaker spend their time encouraging, and witnessing that "the Lord will work it out", and that "your miracle is on the way".
— reviewed by Stan North —
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