Wednesday, June 4, 2014

11th Hour - Picture This - CD Review

11th Hour will release Picture This on June 17. I had the chance to get the project when I saw the group a few weeks ago, which was the first weekend they were carrying it with them.

This is the group's first project since 2012 and the first one with the lineup of Amber Eppinette, Grant Gibson and Jaquita Lindsey. From what Amber said at their concert, Jaquita joined the group just a short time before they went into the studio which accounts for Amber and Grant having a much stronger presence on the project.

Amber continues to show that she is making her place among the top young female vocalists of Southern Gospel. "Wounds" is a really stripped down ballad that features Amber. It's simple arrangement really allows her voice to shine through.

Amber not only adds her strong vocals, but also her songwriting chops to the album with "How Will You Plead" that she wrote with Dianne Wilkinson. This is one of my favorites on the CD. There will come a day when we will be guilty of our sins, but can we plead that we have been pardoned through Jesus? This type of song suits Amber so well vocally. It was great to see in a live setting with her on the keys singing it.

Grant has the feature on "This Changes Everything." I love the way the song builds, and the message of this song is great. Grant has been a great addition to the group as the male singer, and definitely one to watch in the future.

While I love the slower ballads on this project, the CD is full of great uptempo songs! "No Death" really gets the project started off right! "Picture This" (another Dianne Wilkinson song), "Jesus Is in the House," "Everlasting Arms" and "Step In" are also great faster songs. "Jesus Is in the House" is stylistically very different from the other songs, but I think it's a great addition.

11th Hour continues to emerge as a strong mixed trio in Southern Gospel. This project only solidifies their place in the industry.

Song List -
1. "No Death"
2. "Picture This"
3. "Jesus Is in the House"
4. "This Changes Everything"
5. "Wounds"
6. "Everlasting Arms"
7. "Waving on the Other Side"
8. "Step In"
9. "How Will You Plead"
10. "Saints Are Born"

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