STYLE: Childrens RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 160101-23817 LABEL: Elevation ELE2131D FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 3 RELEASE DATE: 2016-03-25 RRP: £12.99
Reviewed by Tony Cummings
It's tough going for an adult to wade through 50 recordings which have been targeted at three to five-year-olds and it didn't help that some of the songs here like "Rise & Shine (Arky Arky)" and "Father Abraham" are surely well past their sell by date. (Children's songs seem to date much more quickly than hymns.) It's only when I got to hear Doug Horley's "How Wide Can Your Smile Be" on CD 1 that I got to a song that didn't sound dated, corny or both. Becky Drake also did well to with her "Faith". But elsewhere there were too many banal ditties with perfunctory arrangements and by CD 2 I was beginning to flag. (By the way, forget the megamix title. These are the same recordings and the same mixes you might have bought for your kiddywinkers as individual CDs.) Jon Bonner's "Have Fun" momentarily picked me up - the old school rock 'n' roll rhythm worked as the (unnamed) singer assured us "it's fun to praise and sing the name of Jesus." That was followed by another Horley favourite. It went "Hands, hands, fingers, thumbs/We can lift to praise you." But the standard soon dropped after that. For example, what is the point of making such a dreary version of the old spiritual "He's Got The Whole World In His Hands"? Laurie London recorded a better version of this song. . . and that was way back in 1958! But I pressed on to find myself enjoying the gentle piano and female vocal (Ems Hancock?) on the ballad "Bless" which would be a good song to play when putting the kids to bed. "Happy", on CD 3, was written and sung by Ian Hardwick. In the past Cross Rhythms have praised Mr Hardwick for his jaunty little children-friendly ditties. But if truth be told many four-year-olds today would prefer another song called "Happy" as recorded by David Pharrell Williams to Mr Hardwick's jolly number. The impression that the Church is still lagging behind our modern life was reinforced with the next track, a dull version of the ancient "The Wise Man Built His House Upon The Rock". So I pushed on and though my ears were caressed near the end by the lullaby-like "When The Morning Comes" sung by Becky Drake, I must confess my relief when song 50 finished. This curate's egg of a compilation definitely has three or four tracks I could confidently play to my grandchildren. But I think I'll pass on most of the others.
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A mega collection of 50 songs for preschoolers compiled from the brilliant Spring Harvest Pre-School Praise albums. These sing-along truths for little ones will not only add bounce to their bodies as they enjoy the actions and musical rhythms, but will also teach them about Jesus and the Bible.