CD Review: Everyday (Triumphant Quartet)
Rating: 5 stars (of 5)
Average song rating: 4.4 stars (of 5)
Song List: Jesus Built This Church on Love; Everyday; Somebody Died For Me; Amazed at the Change; Do You Know that You Know?; When the Trumpet Sounds; One Drop of Blood; God’s Home; What a Wonderful Day; The Day of the Lord.
Available From: Artist. [EDIT, 6/18/12: Broken link removed.]
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Triumphant Quartet has kept the same lineup and same style long enough that they don’t have to be concerned about whether their fans will like their new releases. This gives them a freedom in song selection and placement on a CD that groups introducing a new member or more progressive style don’t have; while such groups frequently start a CD with its strongest or second-strongest song, Triumphant Quartet doesn’t have to do that. On Everyday, the project’s four strongest songs are all in the second half of the project. It’s not that the project really has a single weak song; I rate every song on this project a four or five of five stars, something I rarely do even with my highest rated CDs of a given year. On Everyday, Triumphant is able to start with strong songs but build with stronger songs to an impressive finish.
The project starts with two covers, “Jesus Built This Church on Love” (Hemphills) and “Everyday” (Oak Ridge Boys). “Somebody Died for Me” is a ballad with a patriotic /miltary hook.
“Amazed at the Change” was penned by Rodney Griffin, and originally pitched to the group for their previous project. When they didn’t record it on that project, he pitched it to other groups; it was picked up by Liberty Quartet as the title track for their most recent project, Amazed (reviewed here). Then, when Triumphant was selecting songs for this project, they returned to this song and picked it up. The renditions are fairly similar; Liberty Quartet’s rendition has a more easy swing feel, while Triumphant’s has a slightly more produced feel, with some nice harmony arrangements on the final chorus.
“Do You Know that You Know” is songwriter / baritone Scotty Inman’s contribution to the project. This makes this the third “Know” song Daywind artists have released in the past 7 or 8 months, following “I Know that I Know,” cut originally by the Mark Trammell Trio and then Legacy Five, and Greater Vision’s “I Want You to Know That You Know.” Triumphant had already cut tracks for this song before they heard the other group’s cuts; however, it might not have been a bad idea for Daywind execs to suggest that the group held it till their next project.
It has nothing to do with the quality of the song—it’s a great song, and I disagree with David Bruce Murray’s description of the song as repetitive. [EDIT, 6/6/12: Broken link removed.] Yes, the title is repeated twice at the end of the chorus, but that doesn’t make it any more repetitive than, say, “The Blind Man Saw it All.”
The second half of the project is filled with excellent songs. David Sutton is featured on a cover of the Joe Moscheo tune “What a Wonderful Day.” And there are a trio of songs that really should get sent to radio: Wayne Haun’s “When the Trumpet Sounds” is a great uptempo song that really should get sent to radio. The same can be said for two other songs on the project, “One Drop of Blood,” a ballad penned by Jerry Goff that features bass singer Eric Bennett, and the project’s closing song, “The Day of Our Lord,” a ballad penned by Paula Stefanovich (author of “Jerusalem,” “Yaweh,” and “Gospel to the World”) that moves along in a fairly uptempo 6/8 time.
“The Day of the Lord” has one recording oddity I haven’t quite figured out. At least the Daywind pre-release I got has a series of fairly loud beeps (eleven, to be precise) at the end of the bridge, before the transition to the clip from “The King is Coming.” Does anyone know if these made it into the final release, and if they were intentional?
The longer Triumphant can maintain this lineup, and level of song selection and production quality, the more of a lasting mark they will make on this genre. The groups that have the strongest following decades later – the groups from the 60s and 70s that people are still talking about – are the groups that pulled this off.