John Larsson - John Larsson Plays Vol 1: Take-Over Bid and Hosea

Published Wednesday 26th October 2011
John Larsson - John Larsson Plays Vol 1: Take-Over Bid and Hosea
John Larsson - John Larsson Plays Vol 1: Take-Over Bid and Hosea

STYLE: Ambient/Meditational
RATING 7 7 7 7 7 7 7
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 96391-17138
LABEL: Salvationist Publishing & Supp 25110
RRP: £9.99

Reviewed by Stella Redburn

John Larsson is a well-respected figure in the Salvation Army; in fact he was world leader of the denomination for a while. Amazingly, John found time between 1967 and 1990 to co-write 10 full-length stage musicals with lyricist John Gowans. These musicals have passed into Salvation Army folk-lore, partly because of their wide appeal and partly because both authors saw their Army careers go from captain to general. The musicals had relevance to church groups outside the Salvation Army and were much performed. These new recordings of two of the Larsson/Gowans musicals, Take-Over Bid and Hosea are piano-only renditions. The songs come across as happy, bouncy, catchy, inspired and, inevitably, though in truth rather dated. Many of the songs have been taken up and used in other contexts. I recognized their song "Hundreds And Thousands" from Take-Over Bid because it was included in a BBC schools hymnbook and has been sung by thousands of children up and down the country. The album makes decent, pleasant, retro background music, but to follow the songs with the words provided is more demanding. Unless, that is, you already know the songs because you remember the musicals. I suspect that many people in this category will love this trip down memory lane.

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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