Darnell Davis (and The Remnant) returns triumphantly with fourth LP Moving Forward. A thoughtful, incredibly devoted affair, Moving Forward is an album of ‘spiritual food’, meant to praise God and truly encourage the soul. With few if any miscues, Moving Forward is “just what the doctor…” – better yet the “soul” – ordered.
“Nothing” opens the album assertively and alluringly, possessing an old school gospel swagger about it. The excitement and overall quality of the chorus (The Remnant) truly propels it as a whole. The vamp (“Nothing can separate me”) is a sensation moment for “Nothing”. “It Won’t Work” feeds off the established momentum, delivering another notable showing. The message is incredibly wise, evidenced by recurring lyrics “No weapon formed against me, shall prosper / it won’t work!” Much like “Nothing”, The Remnant ‘show out’ on the vamp, further elevating the energy. As for Darnell, he serves the role of minister in addition to electrifying lead vocalist.
“I Live To Worship You” is more reverent initially. Although clearly in the gospel idiom, “Worship” also possesses urban, smooth-soul cues. Reverence is supplanted by raw emotion and sincere passion. That passion transfers onto “So In Love With You”, an ode to the greatness of God and his incredible works. “When my strength is gone, you hold me out,” sings The Remnant thankfully, “When I need you most, you always show up…” Davis continues to minister, delivering a sermon while The Remnant drive the point on home. “There is none like you, oh God,” Davis opens up “You Are Great”, a continuation of thanks.
On “Moving Forward”, Davis & The Remnant assert “My worst days are over / and my best days are ahead of me.” “Moving Forward” exhibits the upmost positivity, truly aimed at uplifting and encouraging. It’s ultimate goal is one of ‘claiming the victory’ – believing that the battle has already been won (“Not looking back on yesterday / I’m moving forward”). On the magnificent “Change Your Situation”, former Sunday Best finalist Latice Crawford provides a big assist, captivating with her powerful, smoky pipes. Truly moving, “Change Your Situation” provides the tools through song of how to ‘move forward’. “Only You” is the answer to “Change Your Situation”, taking the extra step to affirm that God is the ‘only’ solution.
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Street Date: 03.25.14 | Label: RCA Inspiration
“You Are” is a separate number from “You Are Great”, but the messaging is similar. Reinforcement, it is interesting two similarly titled and messaged cuts appear on the album. “I Won’t Give Up” is traditional gospel at its best, particularly given its incredible theme of faith-driven resolve. Penultimate cut “We Got the Victory” once more claims victory, while closer “Praise Him” does as its title suggests – “Give(s) him the praise!”
Ultimately, Darnell Davis & The Remnant delivers one terrifically, consistent gospel album. Hip enough for the young crowd, yet traditional enough for older folks, there’s really little to nitpick or criticize about Moving Forward. All in all, it is a gospel album at the top of its game.