Gospel’s Best Songs of Hope: Review

[PHOTO: All Music]
Music Review by Luchae Williams

As far as compilation albums go, this is by far one of my favorites! The Gospel’s Best Songs of Hope collection features 12 hand-picked anthems by some of gospel music greats such as Tasha Cobbs, Tye Tribbett and VaShawn Mitchell. If you’re a lover of smooth gospel with an authentic sound then this one is for you!

With a strong theme dedicated to building faith and restoring hope, this album reached my desk at just the right time! I found each song to be powerfully delivered, well written and often so pertinent that it left me speechless. It felt like each worship leader was preaching straight into my situation.

Album opener “Hope saved my life” by Brian Courtney Wilson set the atmosphere rather nicely with its funky, Motown flavour. The title of the song says it all! As always, I appreciate the choral element and the attention to detail in the delivery. What a great start to a power-packed album!

Smokie Norful hit the nail on the head with his track simply titled “Don’t quit”. With vocals that can be described as debonair and soulful, his lyrics tell a story that is overflowing with nothing but the naked truth. I especially love the no-nonsense chorus that says: “Even when the enemy says this is it/Whatever you do/Just don’t quit!” And I agree!

The same can be said for Vanessa Bell Armstrong’s offering “Good news”. The song speaks about relying on prayer to see you through that difficult season and Armstrong packs a lot of clout behind every single sentence that she delivers. When you eventually get to the bridge of the song, it is impossible to stay unmoved, as the vocal team belt out: “Prayer still works!”

Christian music superstars, Tye Tribbett and VaShawn Mitchell need no introduction and, as expected, their offerings are both beautiful and impacting. Tribbett’s track, called “Beauty for ashes”, features an all female choir who take this song of restoration to another level. I also found a message of restoration in Mitchell’s “Turning around for me”. I love the choral element and Mitchell’s gentle delivery as he introduces the message to the listener.

Other easy listens that spiked my interest were the funky “Greatest life ever” by Janice Gaines, “The well” by Micah Stampley and a really catchy “Jesus will” by Anita Wilson. The latter song, with it’s hints of soul and pop, has been masterfully arranged and it definitely had me hooked from the get go.

Gospel music legend, Donald Lawrence, ends the collection off on a high note with a track called “God’s favor”, sung alongside The Tri-City Singers who did an amazing job on this one! The song reminds us that God’s favor is more precious than life and reiterates the timeless truth that “God’s not forgotten you!”

I found this compilation to be soul-strengthening, faith-building and exactly what I needed in a particularly difficult season. These songs will speak hope and life into your destitute situation and a refreshing when you need it most! It is a worthy addition to any album collection, whether you are a lover of raw gospel music or not.

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