Pop Connection - Pop Connection: Pop Hymns For Kids

Published Monday 6th April 2009
Pop Connection - Pop Connection: Pop Hymns For Kids
Pop Connection - Pop Connection: Pop Hymns For Kids

RATING 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 78001-15318
LABEL: Elevation ICC1397D
RELEASE DATE: 2009-04-20
RRP: £4.99

Reviewed by Tony Cummings

Down the years Cross Rhythms reviewers have strained every sinew to reviewing children's music. Alongside some highpoints from Doug Horley, Sammy Horner and always-reliable producer Mark Edwards there have been a veritable flood of inferior albums, particularly from America, where the production has been woeful and the songs either Victorian Sunday school ditties way past their sell by date or modern adult worship songs with a children's choir substituted for Tomlin, Hillsong or whoever. But with this pioneering album such painful musical memories can be eradicated. For Manchester songwriters Mark Pennells and Zarc Porter, much loved for their work with such musical evangelists as the World Wide Message Tribe, Shine and thebandwithnoname, now turn their attention to primary school kids and in the process turn in an album which works at every conceivable level. It should be explained here that Pop Connection is much more than this album. For the past two years and more one-time youth worker Andy Silver has been going into UK primary schools, playing the classrooms of kids some backing tracks, teaching the pupils the songs, recording the children's efforts, mixing the results and then manufacturing CDs to be sold at church-based concerts the following week. The proud parents at the concerts snap them up of course. But now, as a focal point for the whole initiative, to play big gigs at places like Old Trafford and Spring Harvest and to record this album, Silver, Pennells and Porter have assembled a special Pop Connection children's choir. And pretty good they are too with none of the suspect pitching that have marred other kiddies' praise projects. And the kicker which makes the album much more than a mere memento for proud parents was bringing in quality adult singers to handle the lead vocals here. So we have those tweenie evangelists TBC, talented singer/songwriter Shell Perris, Lucy West who in times past has added her pure-toned voice to recordings by Psalmistry, V*enna and BlushUK and the critically acclaimed independent artist Hannah Atkins. Such an array of vocal talent stops the high-pitched vocals of the children from completely dominating while the songs here have all the engaging hooks and snappy pop dance sounds we've come to expect from Porter productions. Standouts for me are the so catchy opener "Hold On", the sensitive look at bereavement "Every Day Every Night", the downright hilarious challenge to embarrassing fathers showing off their moves at parties - "Dancing Like My Dad" - and the poptastic recasting of the Edwin Hawkins Singers hit of the '60s, "Oh Happy Day". All in all, quite brilliant.

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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Product Description
Pop Connection brings together the most popular songs from the Pop Connection Project, which enables school children to record their own quality pop music CD! The album features professional recordings of the best Pop Connection songs. The CD also features Karaoke versions of all the songs so kids can hold their own Pop Connection.

"A great project giving so many kids an opportunity to sing their own album - brilliant!" - Jason Orange, Take That.

Reader Comments

Posted by connor in bolton @ 17:31 on May 1 2016

i love this cd

Posted by roheel @ 18:42 on Feb 7 2010

it was very good because we learned them with a famouse person who sang the songs

Posted by mitchell in de130ow @ 07:25 on Oct 8 2009


Posted by Shannon in Bolton @ 10:43 on Apr 25 2009

Hi i'm 12 and used to go to st.peters school and we did pop connection with andy.i was just listening to the cd and thought i'd come on the website. it was amazing and thankyou for the experience.Love Shannonxxx

The opinions expressed in the Reader Comments are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms.

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