Jonny Lang is probably a name you haven't heard much of in the Christian industry, but in the mainstream market this artist is somewhat of a legend. After three successful albums and a Grammy nomination, this once 15-year old prodigy is back with his fourth album, Turn Around. With his jazzy yet gospel influenced music, he has reached thousands. But is this new installment worth a listen for long time fans or newcomers to the gospel scene?
Lang begins and ends Turn Around with seemingly unneeded organ-led instrumental pieces. There's plenty here for gospel/funk/jazz listeners to enjoy here, especially in the lead track "Bump In The Road," the riffy funk sounds of "The Other Side Of The Fence," and the choir-led title track. In the title track, however, the guitars could have been polished a bit more, as they appear underdone at times and lack the edge they need to really stand out.
Lang also tries his voice out at ballads, where he doesn't shine as much as he does on the other gospel/funk tracks. Lang stretches his range, but not always to desirable results, as exemplified in "My Love Remains." The song has a great message, even if it could be construed as an earthly kind of love, but Lang's vocals hold the song back. "Last Goodbye" showcases his high notes again, but the song is way too slow for its own good.
Overall, this is an album strictly for gospel or jazz fans, and those who have fallen for Jonny Lang's previous installments. A few of the songs included could even reach the country community. If you're not a fan of any of the aforementioned styles, Turn Around isn't the way to go.- Review date: 10/16/06, written by Justin Mabee
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