Maranatha! Music - Everlasting: Timeless Hymns & Ageless Praise
STYLE: Celtic RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 14137-10198 LABEL: Maranatha! 738597183720 FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 2 RRP: £4.99
Reviewed by Lins Honeyman
The sleevenotes on this double disc release from Maranatha encourages the listener to "enjoy the sonic textures of music inspired by Celtic music and the Maranatha Colours series." And as the album title suggests, this collection consists of traditional hymns and Maranatha choruses of yesteryear with the added twist of being presented in a Celtic context. The first disc comprises of vocal renditions of classics like Wesley's "Jesus, Lover Of My Soul" and "Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus" together with a very atmospheric rendition of Isaac Watts' "When I Survey The Wondrous Cross" which perhaps points more to the song's Gregorian Chant roots than other recent versions. Arranger and producer John Andrew Schreiner has certainly gone full out to create the sonic wash of Celtic sound but, although there are plenty of real instruments involved, the sound comes across as being over-produced and synthesised. There is also a reliance on heavy reverb to pad out and mask generally weak vocal performances - a point in case being the disappointing "Amazing Grace" which lacks the passion and emotion that John Newton's evocative anthem demands. The second disc is an instrumental journey through standards such as "Be Thou My Vision" and a reprise of "Jesus, Lover Of My Soul", moving on to established Maranatha choruses which are fitted into the Celtic mould. However, this part of the album tends to lack the direction needed to keep the listener's attention and at intervals seems to be a bit of a pointless exercise. There are many better Celtic-orientated albums than this one in the marketplace.
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Inspired by the rich textures of celtic music, Everlasting is the new two disc compilation of songs featuring timeless hymns and ageless praise.
The music has a traditional old-world feel but with contemporary guitar riffs and piano melodies throughout.