STYLE: Rock RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 4506-4569 LABEL: Emerge SURCD055 FORMAT: CD Mini-album ITEMS: 1 RRP: £4.99
Reviewed by Mike Rimmer
It was about three years ago that Johnny Parks took over as worship leader at Mannafest, the monthly worship and teaching event in Belfast. Prior to this Johnny had demonstrated much ability in creating vibey songs that connected emotionally with his audience but wasn't renowned as a writer of congregational songs. His last studio album, the excellent 'Nomads Welcome', saw him throwing worship songs into the mix and a lot of the material gathered here on this live mini album was originally recorded on 'Nomads'. Approximately 1500 young people gather each month to worship at Mannafest and the energy that's captured here only enriches Johnny's creativity as he makes songs that allow the listeners to fling themselves into the praise of God. But then he also knows when to push back the barriers and extend the vibe into spontaneous worship and for me it's in those moments that 'Close To You' becomes a transcendent experience. Highlights? Everything! But then if you forced me, I'd pick the magnificent "God Is Still With Us" with its reminders of God's promises, and then there's the incredible "Breathe" which explodes with passion. Maybe the day has arrived when Johnny Parks is recognised for the fine work he's been doing.
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