Carman, Commissioned, The Christ Church Choir - Shakin' The House: Live!
STYLE: Gospel RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 10332-9757 LABEL: Benson CD02681 FORMAT: CD Album
Reviewed by Tony Cummings
Benson 02681 Cass/CD Book (Word) Only Carman could get away with a line like "let me hear all the ladies give a clap offering to the Lord". Carman is an enigma, a man who brings slick Vegas showbizzery into the sanctuary yet a man who so consistently goes for ministry over simply entertaining the evangelicals that few could doubt his commitment to the gospel of Christ. Musically too, Carman is a man who delights in mixing up the styles. Pop and MOR are still part of his armoury though he's increasingly danceable. Moving into all things funky has brought an exciting dimension to Carman's work and intriguingly brought him a large black church following. Commissioned are of course travelling the other way, broadening their hardcore black church following to begin to crossover to white audiences. Together with a white Nashville choir who can do all the call-and-response thing as well as the Maranatha praise thing, this live concert, cut on 25th January 1991 is all set for a joyful mix of cultures in celebration of Jesus. It certainly works. Though the title hints at the kind of frenetic scream-up which can sometimes reduce black church to so much histrionics here the whole show is controlled excitement. My favourites are the praise chorus opener, "Celebrate Jesus", the Commissioned sweet soul ballad "To Know (The Saviour)" and a devastating version of one of Carman's most famed stories-in-song, the resurrection of Christ told from Satan's angle "Sunday's On The Way". A wonderful, atmospheric musical and spiritual experience.
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