STYLE: Gospel RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 22281- LABEL: Benson 2370 FORMAT: VHS video Music video RELEASE DATE: 1998-05-22
Reviewed by Niazi Fetto
The date on the box is 1987 and it shows. The more I saw, the more the memories came rushing back of past praise sessions at the Hampstead Bible School of Faith. Indeed, the main problem with this offering is its inability to decide whether it is a show or merely a glossy version of "church". Larnelle's scripture-shooting songs are interspersed with interjections and banter quite typical of worship leaders at Faith Conventions. "Clap offering" abound and the audience are frequently requested to sing along; on one occasion they are even divided in half and directed as to what and when they will sing. Altogether, therefore, the whole thing has a very "fellowship", "family" feel to it which is rather irritating because Larnelle himself is a little better than that. The overall quality of the 15 songs on this tape is very high and all are performed to perfection by the Grammy-winning tenor. Only at the end of the performance, when a curtain rises to reveal a huge, robed gospel choir, does this become as entertaining as it might have been all along, as Larnelle runs through "What A Friend We Have In Jesus", the rousing "Let Freedom Ring", and good ol' "Amen". Only then was I completely awoken from my state of respectful impartiality and moved to the point of truly enjoying myself. Elsewhere the man's talent and quality of songwriting show through frequently but, in general, this video felt almost as long as it is. If you're a Larnelle fan you'll love this - otherwise, be careful.
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