Lucy Stimpson-Maynard - Uplifted

Wednesday 4th September 2002
Lucy Stimpson-Maynard - Uplifted
Lucy Stimpson-Maynard - Uplifted

RATING 4 4 4 4
LABEL: Independent

Reviewed by Trevor Kirk

This is the third album recorded by Lucy with the songwriting assistance of Ken Shearsmith, and it's a distinct improvement in some ways from their first effort 'I Look Up To The Heavens', which I reviewed in CR54. On that one, the production let it down, too many glitches, not enough polish. I'm pleased to see and hear that the technicals on this one are totally acceptable, but I'm puzzled by the wildly varying styles. There's big band jazz, rock, pop praise, slow worship with piano and cello and occasionally flute, and songs with a female harmony group and a girls' choir, and all that variety didn't make for a good consistent listening experience. On several tracks, the song starts slowly and worshipfully, with Lucy's piano creating a reverential mood, but then drums and guitars and horns kick in, crank up the tempo and spoil things completely. Some of the songs are candidates for Room 101 - "JE And Then SUS" is a sort of kids' praise-type thing that lasts less than two minutes (thankfully) - not one of Ken's best ("JE and then SUS - what's that spell? It spells Jesus; JE and then SUS, what's that mean? It means the Lord saves us."); "What Would Jesus Do" is rather old hat, the WWJD thing is probably past its sell-by date by now; and "There's Going To Be A Party" has the deathless line "With a sho be do be do, sha la la la la la le". Additionally, on some of the up tempo numbers, Lucy seems to be trying too hard for power, and by doing so she loses her vocal clarity. On the other hand, there are some excellent moments where the instruments and the vocals blend with the songs to give a worshipful ambience. Unfortunately, for this reviewer, these moments are not frequent enough.

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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