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Help Is on the Way ()

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It's been a while since Doyle Lawson's band underwent one of its trademarked complete overhauls, but the most recent one has yielded a group of jaw-dropping ability. The standard Quicksilver features -- creamy, seamless vocal harmonies coupled with virtuosic instrumental chops -- are all still there, as is the near-total focus on gospel and spiritual songs. But this incarnation of the band is perhaps the creamiest sounding and most obviously virtuosic of all, and the addition of a hot-fingered and tasteful dobro player adds a new dimension to Lawson's traditional sound. Everything you can expect from this album is encapsulated in the opening track, "I Know, I Know" -- a joyfully romping celebration of revival-style salvation. That formula is the one that really seems to get this version of the group going: "One of the These Days" and "Press on O Pilgrim, There Is Joy Ahead" are both intoxicating and invigorating examples of what Quicksilver does best, and always has, regardless of lineup. When they turn to other gospel subgenres, the results are hardly any less impressive: "Land of the Dying" sidesteps the usual tear-jerker temptations implicit in the "gather around mother's deathbed" genre in favor of an almost funky rhythm and an almost stern tone of admonition from the dying mother, which makes for a refreshingly bracing message. And if the guys sound just a little too excited about the fate sinners will suffer when the rapture comes on "When the Hand of God Comes Down" ("It'll be too late to pray"), well, that's an occupational hazard that comes with the gospel genre, and perhaps with Great Day politics and religion of every stripe. At its best, this is music of both attractive humility and unbelievable tunefulness, and the group is at its best during the majority of this excellent album. ~ Rick Anderson, Rovi Hide synopsis

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