Posted by: coomercove | April 17, 2008

Kingsmen: When God Ran review (expanded summary)

“Big and live”, “three chords and a cloud of dust”, and “the ton of fun”. These phrases automatically bring to mind the Kingsmen.

Solid, smooth, and polished? Not words that are usually associated with the Kingsmen.

That changes now.

If Good, Good God was a tune up for the group’s sound, When God Ran is an engine overhaul. As Wes Burke said, they have “reinvented” themselves to match the group’s personnel. Bryan has a big voice that was made for ballads, so they have him sing ballads. Harold’s tenor voice isn’t made to scream all night long, so they have him sing lower, smoother songs and let him pop a note when he needs to. Phillip is a great singer with a terrific range, so they let him sing a country clunker. Ok, so the project isn’t perfect, but what is?

My star ratings average out to 3.9 per track, but that doesn’t really do this project justice. I’ll go a little higher than Wes to call it a definite four and half star project. To me, all that was needed to make it a five star project was to replace “More Than Pray” with something better suited to showcase Phillip.

Ray Dean, Bryan, Phillip, Harold, Brandon, and the production staff at Crossroads have made the Kingsmen a major player again in the world of quartets. I’ll be the first to say that I didn’t expect it to happen. I honestly thought that the Kingsmen’s best days were (far) behind them. They may never equal their peak of the 70s and early 80s, but their future is brighter than it has been in over twenty years.

Like Adam Edwards and others have said, this is the first mush have project of 2008.

Again, I want to thank Wes, Daniel, Adam, Aaron for participating in this review. Also, thanks to David Bruce Murray for some very helpful suggestions along the way.

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