3:1 Review: Twenty-Five Years – Pressing On (Ernie Dawson and Heirline)
Our family has developed a new way to review CDs along with SouthernGospelBlog.com’s new album review format: we gather together and analyze the CD over popcorn. 🙂 We launched this routine as we sat down to review the latest release from Ernie Dawson and Heirline: Twenty Five Years – Pressing On.
+1. Consistent Country Gospel Style: Heirline has a consistent country gospel sound. For those who enjoy slide steel guitars, ballads, and Southern slurs, this is a CD for you! Ernie and his sons Eric and Landon – the only other featured vocalists – handle the country styling well with their voices and communicate their song selections soulfully.
+2. “Spiritual Medley”: This medley of “Send the Light”/”Unclouded Day”/”Leaning On the Everlasting Arms”/”He Set Me Free”/”Jesus on the Mainline” is sure to be a toe-tapper and “brighten your day” song! Heirline presents these familiar hymns with a Southern Gospel/bluegrass twist and it definitely was a highlight on the album.
+3. “Here Comes the Lord”: This is probably Heirline’s strongest song on the project. A slow, but powerful ballad, “Here Comes the Lord” directs the listener’s gaze to the sky in joyful anticipation of Lord’s return. Ernie, backed by his son Eric and tenor singer Jackie Lamb, delivers this song well with feeling and encourages the church to keep “pressing on” through these troubled times. The arrangement lends itself more toward the Southern Gospel ballad style than country, and is enhanced by pleasant strings and horns.
:1. Lack of Other Vocalists: As we began listening to the CD, we immediately noticed Eric Dawson and Jackie Lamb were mixed way too quietly when they joined Ernie, which gave the impression of background vocals on a solo CD. We would have enjoyed hearing more of a “group sound”. Also, it would have been nice to hear Jackie featured on a song; we saw Jackie Lamb several years ago with the George Amon Webster Trio and know he has an excellent tenor voice. Eric and Landon’s solos on (Eric on “The Man Upstairs” and Landon on “Sometimes You’re Daddy”) do break up the repetitiveness nature of Ernie’s vocals, but our family would have liked to hear more of the other group members.
Traditional or Progressive?
Definitely progressive country gospel.
SouthernGospelBlog.com’s Radio Single Picks
Here Comes the Lord, Absent from the Body
Average song rating: 3 stars. Overall album rating: 3 stars.
Executive Producer: Bob Jones • Produced by: Nick Bruno and Scott Godsey • Group Members: Ernie Dawson (Lead), Linda Dawson (Management), Jackie Lamb (Tenor), Eric Dawson (Baritone/Sound), Landon Dawson (Lead) • Review Copy Provided • Song List: Press On; Brand New Things; The Man Upstairs; God Still Dries Our Tears; Old Filthy Rags; At the End of the Aisle; Sometimes You’re Daddy; Absent from the Body; God’s Children; Spiritual Medley; Here Comes the Lord.