Hiding Place

Hiding Place

5.0 2
by Selah
     
 

Contemporary praise trio Selah (siblings Todd Smith and Nicol Sponberg, joined by longtime pal Alan Hall) have carved out a unique niche by using their gorgeous vocal blend to breathe new life into traditional hymns. Each vocalist offers something unique: for Sponberg it's a smoky blues, while Hall has a crystalline tenor and Smith is a powerhouse balladeer. Singing… See more details below

Overview

Contemporary praise trio Selah (siblings Todd Smith and Nicol Sponberg, joined by longtime pal Alan Hall) have carved out a unique niche by using their gorgeous vocal blend to breathe new life into traditional hymns. Each vocalist offers something unique: for Sponberg it's a smoky blues, while Hall has a crystalline tenor and Smith is a powerhouse balladeer. Singing together, the three bring an emotional connection to their music that few soloists can claim. Hiding Places offers many such great moments ("I Bless Your Name" and the Congolese hymn "Esengo" are standouts), but Selah still shine mightiest when they perform traditional material. Here, it's a funk-rock take on "There Is Power in the Blood" (and Hall's solo bonus track, "Down to the River to Pray") that resonates with listeners, more than the too-slick inspirational pop of "You Raise Me Up" and "All My Praise." One hopes Selah will continue to forge their own way and not follow the Christian music pack down the road of repetitive worship tunes.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Thom Jurek
On its fourth recording, Selah don't step far from their unusual yet successful formula of marrying traditional hymns to contemporary pop and blue-eyed R&B arrangements, African folk songs, Irish melodies, and modern-day praise & worship songs. Siblings Todd Smith and Nicol Sponberg were born to missionaries and raised in central Africa, while Allan Hall was reared in Nashville. The trio met at Belmont College and recorded their first album, Be Still My Soul, for $2000. The rest is history: They've earned four Dove Awards and played Carnegie Hall, as well as holding the dubious distinction of playing on political evangelist Pat Robertson's 700 Club program. Hiding Place's best moments are in its traditional songs, such as "Essengo," a Congolese folk song sung in Kituba, while the old nugget "By and By" is arranged as a chanted African singalong, making it fresh and interesting. However, the trio's attempt at a funky rock arrangement -- which may be edgy for conservative churchgoers -- is almost laughably bad as pop music. The arrangement of "Through It All" is respectable, but largely because Sponberg finally cuts loose a little, thanks to being prodded by a host of real gospel singers in the background. Also, it is interesting to note that Selah's "Irish" tune, "You Raise Me Up," is actually about as new age a Celtic melody and arrangement as is possible to put on tape. As a marketing gimmick, each member gets a solo track tagged on as a bonus at the end of the set to promote upcoming solo projects (all to be released simultaneously). Ultimately, it comes down to whether you dig this group on a basic level or not. If you do, this will be another delight. If you find Selah's music rather bland, Hiding Place will do nothing to change your view.

Product Details

Release Date:
05/25/2004
Label:
Curb Records
UPC:
0715187883420
catalogNumber:
78834
Rank:
8354

Related Subjects

Tracks

  1. You Raise Me Up  -  Selah
  2. Part the Waters Lord/I Need Thee Every Hour  -  Selah
  3. I Bless Your Name  -  Selah
  4. Essengo  -  Selah
  5. All My Praise  -  Selah
  6. There Is Power in the Blood  -  Selah
  7. You Are My Hiding Place  -  Selah
  8. Through It All  -  Selah
  9. By and By (We'll Understand It Better By and By)  -  Selah
  10. O the Deep Deep Love of Jesus  -  Selah
  11. All of Me  -  Selah
  12. Before the Throne of God Above  -  Selah
  13. Turn To You  - Todd Smith
  14. Anything and Everything  -  Selah
  15. Down in the River to Pray  - Allan Hall

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Selah   Primary Artist
Robert Mason   Cello
Eric Darken   Percussion
David Angell   Violin,Concert Master,String Quartet
Steve Brewster   Drums
Connie Ellisor   Violin
Kim Fleming   Choir, Chorus
Jim Grosjean   Viola
Vicki Hampton   Choir, Chorus
David Hungate   Bass
Anthony LaMarchina   Cello
Jerry McPherson   Electric Guitar
Paul Mills   Group Member
John Mock   Human Whistle
Gordon Mote   Organ
Wendy Moten   Choir, Chorus
Pamela Sixfin   Violin,String Quartet
Christian Teal   Violin
Alan Umstead   Violin
Catherine Umstead   Violin
Mary Kathryn Van Osdale   Violin
Biff Watson   Acoustic Guitar,Mandocello
Kristin Wilkinson   Viola,String Quartet
Nicol Sponberg   Vocals,Group Member
Elliott Smith   Vocals
Monisa Angell   Viola
Cate Myer   Violin
Ange Smith   Vocals
Allan Hall   Piano,Vocals,Group Member
Schjolin   Percussion,Drums,Keyboards
Greg Sponberg   Vocals
Laban Smith   Spoken Word
Todd Smith   Vocals
Sarighani Reist   Cello,String Quartet
Abby Smith   Vocals

Technical Credits

Chris Eaton   Composer
Andraé Crouch   Composer
James Hallawell   String Arrangements
Mark Heimermann   Producer
Michael Ledner   Composer
Paul Mills   String Arrangements
Craig White   Engineer
Vikki Cook   Composer
Nicol Sponberg   Arranger,Producer,translation
Robert Lowry   Composer
Rolf Lovland   Composer
Charles Albert Tindley   Composer
Samuel Trevor Francis   Composer
Glenn Sweitzer   Art Direction
Lewis Jones   Composer
Allan Hall   Arranger,Producer,Additional Production
Traditional   Composer
Annie Sherwood Hawks   Composer
Jason Kyle   Arranger,Producer
Schjolin   Programming,Producer
Laban Smith   Introduction
Todd Smith   Arranger,Composer,Producer,translation
Jimmy Collins   Producer
Brendan Graham   Composer
Audrey Hatcher   Composer

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