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Testify
     

Testify

by Caleb Johnson
 
Hot off the momentum from his 2014 American Idol crown, North Carolina rocker Caleb Johnson takes a victory lap with his debut album, Testify. While it's hard for the public to know how much control a new Idol winner actually has over his/her first proper release, the album does seem to line up with Johnson's pre-Idol roots as the

Overview

Hot off the momentum from his 2014 American Idol crown, North Carolina rocker Caleb Johnson takes a victory lap with his debut album, Testify. While it's hard for the public to know how much control a new Idol winner actually has over his/her first proper release, the album does seem to line up with Johnson's pre-Idol roots as the metal-loving lead singer of Asheville hard rockers Elijah Hooker, who released their own debut just prior to Johnson's emergence on the show. Knocked out in a furious three weeks with producer Howard Benson, who is responsible for mainstream acts as disparate as My Chemical Romance and Rascal Flatts, Testify dials up the rock theatrics for a riffy, vaguely Southern-leaning romp that is surprisingly fun and entertaining. Front-loaded with two of the heaviest (and best) cuts, "Sailing Away" and "Save Me," the album also dishes out a handful of ballads and bluesy numbers but is at its best when Johnson lends his formidable chops to the type of over the top stadium thumpers that connected with fans on Idol. In those moments, he exudes a refreshing freewheeling charm that harks back to the '70s heyday of Meat Loaf and Kiss, seeming to take himself less seriously than so many other Idol alums vying for pop relevance. Or maybe it's that he takes his rock very seriously, attacking classic rock tropes with a hearty Jack Black-esque zeal that is ultimately charming. Pegging Darkness frontman Justin Hawkins to pen the lead single "As Long as You Love Me" was a stroke of genius, aligning Johnson squarely with the school of rock where his strengths lie. Testify is by no means a great album, but that powerful voice and magnetic personality that won over so many fans are absolutely present as Johnson delivers a solid first effort.

Product Details

Release Date:
08/12/2014
Label:
Interscope Records
UPC:
0602537939329
catalogNumber:
002132002

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Caleb Johnson   Primary Artist,Vocals
Howard Benson   Keyboards,Voices,Hammond B3
Josh Freese   Guitar,Drums
Phil X.   Guitar
Calvin Dupree   Choir, Chorus
Randy Cooke   Drums
Cochemea Gastelum   Baritone Saxophone
Chris Chaney   Bass
Neal Sugarman   Tenor Saxophone
Jon Button   Bass
Justin Hawkins   Background Vocals
Joe Rickard   Drums
Dap-Kings Horns   Horn
Dave Guy   Trumpet
Lenny Skolnik   Keyboards,Background Vocals
Jonny Litten   Keyboards,Background Vocals
Auvrell Christophe   Choir, Chorus
Monet Bagneris   Choir, Chorus
Tommy Leonard   Choir, Chorus

Technical Credits

Howard Benson   Producer
Steve Diamond   Composer
Mike Plotnikoff   Engineer
Dave Bassett   Composer
Sean Mosher-Smith   Art Direction
Mitch Allan   Composer
Tom Leonard   Composer
Joleen Belle   Composer
Blair Daly   Composer
Scurry   Producer
Josh Alexander   Composer
James Michael   Composer
Sam Hollander   Composer
Hatsukazu "Hatch" Inagaki   overdub engineer,Vocal Engineer
Brian Howes   Composer
Justin Hawkins   Composer
Jon Nicholson   Drum Technician
Eric D. Wortham   Composer
Wayne Gordon   Engineer
Christine Wolff   Publicity
Jennifer Bowling   Marketing
Lenny Skolnik   Composer,Programming,String Arrangements
Freddy Wexler   Composer
Jonny Litten   Composer,Programming
Caleb Johnson   Composer
Nathan Andrew Cyphert   Composer
Meghan Prophet   Publicity
Egbert Nathaniel Dawkins   Composer
Sidnie Tipton   Composer

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