James Hall & Worship and Praise
Live at Foxwoods

For nearly 15 years, James Hall & Worship and Praise has impacted gospel choral music with unparalleled musical arrangements combined with unmatched vibrato vocals. With Professor Hall at the helm, the choir has left its mark with hits including "God Wants a Yes", "The Blood" and "God Is In Control".

After a lengthy six-year recording absence, Hall is back with his signature choir and their latest effort titled Live at Foxwoods, on the choir's own label, Music Blend.

CD The trend-setting choral master continues to make history, as the aggregation records this double-disc effort at the Foxwoods Casino and Resort in Connecticut (making it the first gospel album ever recorded in a casino). For this historic seventh release, the choir remains consistent, presenting innovative arrangements and musical excellence while delving into new territory to boot.

Returning for this effort is Melvin Crispell, longtime music director for Worship and Praise. Fellow mainstays John Peters (piano and keyboard), Eddie Heyward (drums), Reggie Young (bass), are joined by the popular Mo' Horns, who add a totally new flavor to the trademark Brooklyn sound. With this band as the backdrop, Hall & Worship and Praise are off to the races.

Not known for their collaborations, Hall nevertheless orchestrates a dream partnership, as vocal powerhouse Nikki Ross joins Worship and Praise for "Nothing Shall Separate Me", and it lives up to the hype. Choir favorite Tunesha Crispell represents well on the John Peters penned "For The Lord Is Good". Worship and Praise aficionados will totally eat up the insanely written "Great Is the Mystery of Godliness", which could serve as the musical soundtrack for the Creation story.

Hall and his choir infuse their trademark Brooklyn flavor into a new sound, showing incredible musical depth and growth. Check out the infectious and irresistible vibes of "Perfect Peace", "Ring It Out With A Shout", and "He'll Do Just What He Said". Hall even submits a rare studio cut, titled "God the Son", where he and Asaph Womack handle the lead vocals.

Within this 17-track, double-disc set, there is no shortage of hits and memorable musical moments. Masterfully fusing advanced musicality with a tangible and accessible message; Hall and Worship and Praise uncover the formula for musical success with this release. In no uncertain terms, Live at Foxwoods is a magnum opus that will soon be a classic among music purists.

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Production: James Hall, Reggie Young, John Peters, Devory Pugh
album release date: October, 2007
Music Blend

— reviewed by Gerard Bonner

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