Pete Caulfield - The Journey

Published Sunday 8th April 2018
Pete Caulfield - The Journey
Pete Caulfield - The Journey

STYLE: Roots/Acoustic
RATING 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 169752-26680
LABEL: Independent
RRP: £7.99

Reviewed by John Cheek

It may be a hackneyed theme, but life is a journey and one which has taken this Liverpool-based worship leader through some dark places. Coming to faith at Long Lane church in the city and later playing at quite a number of Christian festivals including Cross Rhythms and Crossfire and events in Scotland, Holland and Ireland, this is the fruit of the times when things went stale. His disappointing fourth album, "Rescued", released in 2012 would soon be forgotten as a serious family illness put much of his life on hold, and meant that each Sunday was spent visiting, at the hospital - for over a year, Caulfield did not even pick up his guitar. Eventually, things got better and this corresponded with the family returning to Long Lane. 'The Journey' does not so much record as reflect the journey which was experienced on the emotional and spiritual levels. Caulfield has resisted the urge to rush this collection of songs, instead allowing things to percolate and Pete is comfortable with revisiting one or two ideas first explored and then shelved from 1999. Consequently, we are taken on a divine journey, a snapshot of the interior of the human experience. The best music often reminds the listener of a time and place in their past and Caulfield's music is accessible enough to do this, quite brilliantly at times. The title-track suggests an artist coming from a place of brokenness; refreshing, when so much worship material has a focus upon victory - indeed, the track grows on you and is indicative of the feel of the album to come. Caulfield's voice has been enhanced by Harmonies from Dee Newby, Pete Hawley and Graham Hyde. The arrangements throughout are deft, displaying a lightness of touch and strong musicianship. The performances from bassist Derek Hinton and Pete Hawley (of the Love & Joy Gospel Choir) on guitar are just two examples of a quality line-up in action. "Crown Of Thorns" features an outstanding alto sax part from Ian Gilchrist, reminiscent of the saxophone of UB40's "One In Ten". Whilst not the standout track, "O Lord Our God" thankfully steers clear of sounding like Status Quo and is a joy, reminding the listener of T Rex circa "Get It On", but with lyrics definitely sacred, not profane. This is not a collection featuring the high production values and walls-of-sound of many worship albums today. Some may be disappointed, but 'The Journey' is an honest expression of real Christian living and a quiet gem.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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Sample Track Listing:
1. The Journey [Listen]
2. O Lord Our God [Listen]
3. Crown Of Thorns [Listen]
4. For Such A Time As This [Listen]
5. Spirit Move Within My Mind [Listen]
6. Draw Near To God [Listen]
7. Here I Come Again [Listen]
8. Simply Abandoned [Listen]
9. We Shall Be Strong [Listen]
10. Secret Places [Listen]

This track data is supplied by the Cross Rhythms CD/DVD review library. Please note that CD tracks may vary according to release region or product version.

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