Get used to shorter-length albums. It seems to be catching on. The LeFevre Quartet’s new release, Ascending, falls somewhere between an extended play “single” (EP) and a full-length album. There are eight total tracks clocking in at 28 minutes. (28 minutes, incidentally, is about a minute longer than the Oak Ridge Boys’ recent 9-song release, 17th Avenue Revival).
One thing positive can be said about shorter albums: they take less time to review! Read on as David and Kyle consider the highlights and lowlights of Ascending. In the end, they’ll decide if it’s an album they’ll definitely Buy, one they’re more likely to Stream, or if they would take a Pass on this one.
- I have enjoyed Third Day’s original recording of “Revival” (2017), but I like the LeFevre Quartet’s version even more. This song was begging for powerful four-part harmonies, and the LeFevre Quartet delivers just that along with an exciting track.
- “Sailing Away” is a brand new song with an arrangement that brings back fond memories of 1980s-era toe-tappers like “Moving Up To Gloryland.”
- It’s good to hear Keith Plott singing bass with a quartet again. His feature on “Silver And Gold” is another highlight of Ascending.
- I will give the group credit for thinking outside of the box with “Revival.” It’s risky to tackle a song by such a distinctive voice as Mac Powell, but rather than imitate, they reinvent the song as a straight-up quartet number.
- The album as a whole (and the quartet) is not afraid to experiment. “A Rugged Old Cross,” “Sun’s Gonna Come Up,” and “I Have It All” are modern and innovative for southern gospel.
- Likewise, this is a very upbeat album, with only 2 ballads throughout.
- Eight songs is not a full-length recording.
- Song credits are listed out of order on the interior artwork. Why???
- For as catchy and enjoyable as “Sailing Away” is, it just feels out of place stylistically (to be fair, if the end goal is ala carte streaming, then it shouldn’t be an issue).
- Unlike DBM, I’m not against shorter albums if the end result is all-solid material (more on this in a future article….)
BUY, STREAM, or PASS
David: Buy. There’s only eight songs, but they’re all good.
Kyle Buy. Same reason as DBM.
Label: Daywind Records
Producer: Wayne Haun
Song Titles: I Have It All; Revival; A Rugged Old Cross; I’ll See You At The House; Sailing Away; Sun’s Gonna Come Up; Only Jesus; Silver And Gold
Rating: 4.25 Stars (scale of 1-5 stars)
Release Date: April 27, 2018