Lest We Forget.

hYMNS OF rEMEMBERANCE

Integrity Music Europe is pleased to announce the release of a special compilation created to coincide with this year’s Remembrance Sunday. Hymns of Remembrance contains thirty-four powerful hymns that echo the hope and faith of those who have given their lives for the peace and freedom we enjoy today. Highlights include Onward Christian Soldiers, Nearer My God To Thee, Rock of Ages, All The Way My Saviour Leads Me, Blessed Assurance, How Great Thou Art, Abide With Me, When I Survey The Wondrous Cross, Man Of Sorrows and The Old Rugged Cross.

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Review Xtra – Spring Harvest : Kids Praise Party 2 DVD

Spring Harvest Kids Praise Party 2 DVDSPRING HARVEST : Kids Praise Party 2 DVD.   (Elevation : ELE1932A)

A couple of years ago Spring Harvest released the Kids Praise Party DVD and what an excellent DVD it was too. I believe I gave it 9/10 at the time. So, it was with great anticipation that my youngest daughter and I opened up this DVD to see what Percy Penguin had to offer this time around. Once again the songs are backed up with cartoon animations and feature optional subtitles and sign language. It features a variety of musical styles from rock to rap across 10 well known songs such as “Every Move I Make”, “I Love Ya” and “King of Majesty”. Beware, the version of “Happy Day” is not the Tim Hughes version, but the traditional song, though that isn’t a problem – it’s actually nice to hear that version for a change. Once again, it’s upbeat and joyful most of the way through with some fantastic musical arrangements and musicianship, which leads me to ask, why does this have to be confined to children’s worship? Anyway, what I think is largely irrelevant. What about its target audience. I’ll let my daughter answer – “I thoroughly enjoyed watching most of the songs on this DVD. The good thing is that I knew some songs on it and sang along! But there also is a bad thing to it. I didn’t like the song ‘Shackles’. Apart from that, it was really good!!”   9/10   Robin Thompson.

Valma Merrick to Lead Worship at Women’s Conference.

Valma MerrickReverbnation artist Valma Merrick to lead worship at this years Captivate Women’s Conference. This years conference will feature speakers Shannon McNally, Karen Urwin, and Mary Ann Robertson. The conference will take place on November 1st at Hollymoor Community Church, Birmingham, UK,  and tickets are £5 available from http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/captivate-womens-conference-tickets-13472006133?utm_campaign=new_eventv2&utm_medium=email&utm_source=eb_email&utm_term=eventurl_text

To hear some of Valma’s music, please use the following links:

This is My Desire – Live Demo
The More I Seek You – LIVE DEMO
When I Survey The Wondrous Cross – LIVE…

Review Xtra – Carol Lee Sampson : Hallelujah is Our Song

Carol Lee Sampson Hallelujah is Our SongCAROL LEE SAMPSON : Hallelujah is Our Song.   (CAS Records : CASCD09) .

Malvern based singer/songwriter Carol Lee Sampson has released her latest song as a charity single in aid of Cancer Research UK. Her best friend is currently battling the disease, and this song was written for her. It’s about their friendship and faith. The title of the song comes from the words uttered by the late wife of the Bishop of Worcester, on hearing the news that she had cancer. The song itself is simply glorious! The lyrics and tune are uplifting and must be a great encouragement to those suffering from cancer. Carol Lee’s vocals are spot on, and the swaying rhythms of both the guitar and keyboards are pure joy. Also appearing on this release are six bonus tracks, taken from her back catalogue. Of those, ‘Back to Life’ has an ambient feel to it, and one on which Carol Lee’s vocals sound remarkably like Olivia Newton John. ‘Everlasting Arms’ is a pleasant song about being carried and held in God’s embrace, while the piano led ‘Don’t Wait’ carries a strong message. “Don’t wait” to say sorry, or tell someone something, before it’s too late. The cost of this CD or download is just £3.99. for that, you’re getting a blend of lovely songs, plus raising money for a very worthy cause.   8/10.

The Review Zone – Steve Taylor and The Perfect Foil : Only a Ride

Steve Taylor and The Perfect Foil GoliathSTEVE TAYLOR & THE PERFECT FOIL : Only a Ride.   (Splint Entertainment.)

So it’s been since 21 years since the last Steve Taylor album. Yes, really. Since then he’s been dabbling in film making and producing and writing for other artists. But earlier this year, Steve announced a crowd funding campaign via Kickstarter to record a new album. He hit his target and then some, leading to a US tour into the bargain. The much delayed album is due out in November but in the meantime is this single release “Only a Ride”. Like with the previous album “Squint” gone is the eighties keyboard driven pop-rock and in is a harder more alternative sound. Steve has never been one to follow the Christian music trend and this tougher edge suits him. The backing band includes the Newsboys’ Peter Furler, complemented by Jimmy Abegg and John Mark Painter. Together they make a great sound and Steve sounds refreshed and raring to go. If the new album is as good as this we’re in for a treat. 9/10   Robin Thompson.

The Review Zone – Newday : Homegrown

NewDay HomegrownNEWDAY : Homegrown.   (Freedom Sounds : Freedom003)

Every year, thousands of worshippers gather for the Newday Festival. The same team who lead worship have taken to the studio for the first time to reimagine and reinvent. These are new arrangements of well-known Newday songs. ‘Sun of Righteousness’ is quite an odd song to start the album with, as it’s quite delicate. It’s pleasant enough, but not one that lingers in your memory for long. On the other hand, ‘So Good’ IS that good! It’s a happy song that tells of God’s goodness, and is well sung by it’s co-writer Anna Brading. There’s a hint of Planetshakers about ‘We Are Yours’. It’s a big sound. Similarly, the big production of ‘You Died For Me’ is a cross between The Remission Flow and Elbow. I particularly liked this song, and immediately played it again. ‘Holding On’, ‘All I Want’ and ‘My Soul is Well’ are three very reflective songs. The latter becomes quite repetitive with its chorus, but I found this to be a very emotional song, personally, and I liked it. Based upon the Lord’s Prayer, ‘Let the Rain Come’ is a brilliant song. It draws you into the act praise and worship, even when you’re not expecting it! Finally, Simon Brading’s ‘You Reign’ (in every circumstance) simply oozes with God’s love. Another wonderful song. Ignoring that these songs come out of the festival, they all stand well in their own right, and it makes for a very good album.   9/10.

Valma Merrick to Lead Worship at Women’s Conference.

Valma MerrickReverbnation artist Valma Merrick to lead worship at this years Captivate Women’s Conference. This years conference will feature speakers Shannon McNally, Karen Urwin, and Mary Ann Robertson. The conference will take place on November 1st at Hollymoor Community Church, Birmingham, UK,  and tickets are £5 available from http://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/captivate-womens-conference-tickets-13472006133?utm_campaign=new_eventv2&utm_medium=email&utm_source=eb_email&utm_term=eventurl_text