Your Gateway to Music and More from a Christian Perspective
     Slow down as you approach the gate, and have your change ready....
SubscribeAbout UsFeaturesNewsReviewsMoviesConcert ReviewsTop 10ResourcesContact Us
About Us

Album Reviews
Concert Reviews

Top 10
Contact Us

Artist: Various Artists
Album: WoW Gold
Length: 30 tracks/70+ min. (2 discs)
Web: http://www.wowgold.NET

For those fans of Christian music who have not begun collecting it until recently, the first release in the new WoW Gold series makes a great addition.  For those avid fans who have been buying the top releases of the last ten or more years, you probably already have all of the albums from which this collection is derived.  WoW Gold is as it claims, "30 landmark Christian songs of the 70's, 80's, and 90's."[sic]  You get the top thirty songs of the last thirty years, although somewhat skewed toward the 90s.  Think of the biggest names in Christian music over the last thirty years and you are sure to see them represented here, with few exceptions. Everyone from Michael W. Smith to Newsboys to Andrae Crouch & The Disciples is on this album. WoW Gold  is also unique in that by spanning such a large spectrum of time and artists, you get a large variety of musical styles on the two-disc set.  For instance, it's the first place I've seen Stryper in the same collection with Twila Paris. Vive la difference.

Disc One is the "edgier" of the two and is slanted toward the youthful listener.  It starts out with mid-tempo hits from the 90s such as "Flood" (Jars of Clay), "Testify to Love" (Avalon), and "What If I Stumble?" (dc Talk).  There are also rock classics like "Why Should the Devil Have All the Good Music?" (Larry Norman), "Beyond Belief" (PETRA), and the metalhead favorite "To Hell With the Devil" (Stryper).  I was disappointed with the live version of Carman's "The Champion" versus the album version since it was a bit harder to hear the lyrics, which is what this song/poem is all about.  Nevertheless, live or studio, the song still brings up the chill bumps at the finale.

Disc Two could be considered the "classic" set and is more worshipful and inspirational than Disc One.  Starting out of the gate with "For The Sake of the Call" (Steven Curtis Chapman), it goes right into "He Is Exalted" (Twila Paris) then "Thy Word" (Amy Grant).  The gotta-have-it neo-classic "Butterfly Kisses" (Bob Carlisle) is also included.  In fact, just about every song on Disc Two would be considered a classic for its time-enduring, faith-inspiring, tear-jerking nostalgia.  Prepare for more chill bumps on "Rise Again" (Dallas Holm), "We Shall Behold Him" (Sandi Patty), and "Praise the Lord" (The Imperials).  Appropriately enough, Disc Two ends with Ray Boltz' "Thank You."

The extensive liner notes detail a brief history of the artist, the song (including what year it was released), and what it meant to Christian music at the time.  The last two pages tell which album the song came from, which is useful for die-hard collectors who want to acquire every last album represented. One slight typo indicated that "To Hell With the Devil" was released in 1996, when in reality by that time Stryper had long since broken up.

All of these songs were either chart toppers, show stoppers, or both.  It is a very thorough cross-section of Christian music.  Noticeably missing, however, were songs from WhiteHeart, Sweet Comfort Band, DeGarmo & Key, and Steve Green.  Their songs probably were considered, but didn't make the final cut for this collection (over 150 songs on the initial list was distilled into 30.)  Expect future compilations in the WoW Gold series to continue to expose new fans to "classic" Christian music while also giving long-time fans some of their favorite songs in one place. WoW Gold is an excellent first step in that direction.

Zik Jackson 7/20/2000



  Copyright © 1996 - 2000 The Phantom Tollbooth