Tuesday, November 13, 2012

How You Walk the Miles - Karen Peck - CD Review

Karen Peck Gooch is one of the most recognized female vocalists in Southern Gospel. Her role in the movie Joyful Noise just solidified this more. After the movie, Daywind asked her about doing a solo album as a follow-up. The album, produced by Ben Isaacs, officially released on October 23.

Karen had a number of special guests on the album who sang with her including the Oak Ridge Boys, Jason Crabb, Gordon Mote and New River members Susan Peck Jackson and Jeff Hawes.

"God Lives There" is the first single from the album, and it's probably my favorite song on the project. Wes Hampton and Ben Isaacs join her on this song. The song has a great message talking about different places that we should be reaching out to show God to others. God lives in the most unusual places, and we should remember that we are called to be the hands and feet of God where we go. Karen conveys this message beautifully.

Another standout song is "Talk About the Good Things," which was a great choice to begin the album with. It's a more uptempo song that sounds like it was written for her. It sounds very much like a Karen Peck and New River song.

"Fix Me Jesus" is a song that Queen Latifah sang in the movie Joyful Noise. I'm probably partial, but I do prefer Karen's version of this song. I'm not sure if this was another tie to the movie on purpose or not, but "Put a Little Love in Your Heart" and "Stand by the River" were both previously recorded by another one of her co-stars in the movie, Dolly Parton. "Put a Little Love in Your Heart" is such a fun uptempo song that fits Karen so well. The Oak Ridge Boys join Karen on "Stand by the River."

"Extra Mile" is not to be confused with the Lauren Talley song, but the idea behind the song is similar. Jason Crabb joins Karen on this one. It asks the question what if we made the effort to go the "extra mile" reaching those around us, how much could we change the world?

The project has a variety of different types of songs. "Fix Me Jesus" and "Holy Spirit Speak to Me" both have a more worship feel to me. These songs slow the pace of the album, but Karen delivers some great tender moments on both of these songs. "If You Want to Go to Heaven" has a Latin-like style. "Part of Letting Go" is definitely one of the more contemporary songs on the album, while several songs have a country feel.

I don't think it's a secret that I'm a big Karen Peck fan. I was pretty excited when I learned that she would be releasing a solo album. This album did not disappoint at all. I think there's something on this album for everyone to enjoy!

Song List:
1. "Talk About the Good Things"**
2. "How You Walk the Miles"
3. "God Lives There"**
4. "If You Want to Go to Heaven"
5. "Extra Mile"**
6. "Stand by the River"
7. "Part of Letting Go"
8. "Pray"
9. "Fix Me Jesus"**
10. "Put a Little Love in Your Heart"**
11. "Everywhere"
12. "Holy Spirit Speak to Me"

**Denotes Personal Favorites

Review Copy Provided

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