There aren't a lot of gospel records that make it to Billboard's Top 100. Even less make it to both the Top Christian and Top Gospel chart's Top Five, and stay on all three charts for two years. Israel & New Breed's Alive in South Africa is not like a lot of gospel records. With a rich mix of new material and a couple old favorites thrown in for good measure, the play list is chock-full of Israel's special blend of diesel-powered gospel and contemporary Christian stylings. The first CD of this double-disc set is absolutely unrelenting, with creative arrangements and instrumental muscle to spare. The New Breed demonstrate themselves to be one of the tightest outfits not only in Christian music circles, but in the live performance world period. Disc one is graced with brilliant writing on tracks like the title cut "Alive," and the true gem of the whole record "Not Forgotten" with an infectious groove and mysterious North African influenced melodic ideas. Unlike New Breed's previous live disc Live from Another Level, there's a good balance from disc to disc of energetic, up-tempo and more reflective material, making both discs an excellent standalone. Top-notch engineering, guests like artist Jonathon Butler and a live audience that sounds as though they're ready to take the roof off the joint all contribute to a record of singular quality.