Great songs are like X-ray glasses, they allow us to see images oblivious to the naked eye. In times when God's presence seems hidden like a flock of grackles in a leafy tree, a great song exposes the thousands of twitching wings ready to take flight. In God's mercy, a great song can function as God's means of grace in the midst of our abject wants and plangent longings. Serving such an end are the 10 brand new songs from Legacy Five's latest Daywind Records release "Great Day." When the Cathedrals retired in 1999, Roger Bennett and Scott Fowler were determined to continue to carry on the legacy of Sothern Gospel music. Months later, Legacy Five was formed. Despite their relatively short history, they have had garnered 75 Singing News fan awards and they have also been honored with 2 Dove Award nominations. Legacy Five has also appeared on countless tapings of Gaither and Friends Homecoming video tapings that have sold millions of copies worldwide.
It's a challenge for Legacy Five to make a boring record. And "Great Day" is no exception. Featuring a line up of members such as Trey Ivey, Matt Fouch, Gus Gaches, Scott Howard and Scott Fowler, Legacy Five has scoured through over 200 songs in order to narrow down to a tight canon of just 10 tracks. And each of these 10 finalists bear their own identity and sound. Bringing us back into the sepia-tone days where movie soundtracks have that amorous lush of gorgeous sounding strings that can sweep us off our feet with that utopian delight is "Great Day." If you need a sprint in your step and a spark to begin our day, make "Great Day" the song to start your day with. "Christ the King" harkens back to the traditional harmony driven sound of the Southern Gospel tradition. Yet, what sets Legacy Five apart is the way they exude a sense of verve and urgency as layer upon layer of vocals build up to this hymn-like exaltation of Christ that is just celestial.
Nevertheless, for this reviewer, the highlights are the ballads. "He Heals" is one of those songs that drop the scales off our eyes to see Christ in our times of suffering. Be prepared especially for the song's last lines which hit so close to the heart: "He heals, broken hearts, broken bodies, broken minds. He heals by His love, by his blood, and in His time. And in His time... He's right on time." David Moffitt and John Darin Rowsey's "He is to Me" is a love song for Jesus not built on Hallmark-styled clichés. Rather, rooted in Scripture with lots of images from the New Testament, this is a love song with meat. Newest member Matt Fouch adds his pen in crafting the thoughtful "Who is this Man" and don't miss the last song on the record "The Great Medley" Stringing together some of the hymns with the word "great" in their titulars, Legacy Five really goes all out with full glory and power in worship.
Featuring lots of horns with a Motown-like kick is that jubilant sounding "That's A Hallelujah." "What a Happy Day (Medley)" continues on a similar theme, this time with Legacy Five stringing together snippets of old favorites. Of note also is that the album's cover has been chosen by over 1,000 fans. But this is not just a mere gimmick to get the involvement of fans; the songs themselves are so real, so moving, so catchy that they themselves are enough to win us over.