CD/DVD Review: Love Came Calling (Triumphant Quartet)
For eight years (since their 2002 launch), Triumphant Quartet has kept the same lineup—tenor David Sutton, lead singer Clayton Inman, baritone Scotty Inman, bass singer Eric Bennett, and pianist Jeff Stice. Through this year and this recording, they also stayed with the same label, Daywind.
Love Came Calling is the group’s first release since leaving Daywind for Mansion Entertainment. They had been with Daywind from the start, so the departure—and resultant loss of first-chance access to Daywind’s first-rate roster of songwriters—prompted questions as to whether they could sustain the momentum that has propelled them to the top of the radio charts and Singing News Fan Awards vote tallies.
The project contains one key element of continuity, producer Wayne Haun. He co-wrote the project’s two strongest songs with Joel Lindsey, the title track and “The Cross of Christ.” Scotty Inman’s steady growth as a songwriter is evident in the two songs uptempo he co-wrote, the third and fourth strongest on the project—”I Can Take You to the Place” (with co-writer Dianne Wilkinson) and “You’ll Find Me There” (with Joseph Habedank).
Other than a contribution from ubiquitous songwriter Rodney Griffin (“Holy Hands”), most of the rest of the songs on the project have been cut before—but for all except one, “Movin’ Up to Gloryland,” it has been long enough or the original cut was obscure enough that the songs are as good as new.
The accompanying DVD is overall quite strong product. It includes all eleven songs from the CD, plus six more from the group’s regular concert program. After initial plans to film it in Branson, Missouri were scrapped, the taping was moved to TBN Studios in Trinity Music City, Hendersonville, Tennessee. The lighting, audio, and camera work are excellent; the only issue worthy of noting is that while the taping was in full-screen, the editor doing the final render added utterly unnecessary black bars to the top and bottom to make the final result full-screen. This causes the DVD to display improperly on widescreen computer and TV monitors—though there is no distortion, the bars keep the video from filling the screen. Since most screens sold today are widescreen, this is significant enough to deduct a half-star from the DVD’s rating—but not enough to keep it from being one of the technically and musically strongest of the year.
So does this project sustain the momentum Triumphant built with their Daywind releases?
As a matter of fact, Love Came Calling earns Triumphant Quartet its second consecutive five-star rating on SouthernGospelBlog.com.
Produced by: Wayne Haun. • Group Members: David Sutton, Clayton Inman, Scotty Inman, Eric Bennett, Jeff Stice. • Review copy provided. • Song list: Saved by Grace (Carroll McGruder); Love Came Calling (Wayne Haun, Joel Lindsey); I Can Take You to the Place (Scott Inman, Dianne Wilkinson); Mercy, Forgiveness and Grace (Woodrow “Woody” Wright); Movin’ Up to Gloryland (Lee Roy Abernathy); The Undertaker (McCray Dove); Jesus is Your Ticket to Heaven (Archie Jordan); We Shall Overcome (Jeff Ross); Holy Hands (Rodney Griffin); The Cross of Christ (Wayne Haun, Joel Lindsey); You’ll Find Me There (Scott Inman, Joseph Habedank). • Average song rating: 4.2 stars. DVD rating: 4.5 stars. CD rating: 5 stars.