The Phantom Tollbooth

Artist:  Anointed
Label:  Myrrh Records
Length:  10 Tracks / 48:12 min.

You have to give Anointed credit for putting up with the nonsense CCM demands of its artists long enough to be trusted with a stronger hand in their sound. Da'dra Crawford Greathouse, Steve Crawford, and Denise "Nee-C" Walls's fourth album is a cross-over in the best sense of the word as it introduces their loyal Contemporary Christian Music fans to current urban sounds. They take full advantage of the production leverage three successful albums warrant to create a more soulful gospel album that incorporates the freshest of electronic backgrounds for their dead-on vocalization.

This CD is packed with potential hits. Pre-release "Revive Us" is already receiving broad recognition; and "Take it Eazy," "Head Above Water," "It's All Good," "Godspot," and "Anything is Possible" will all be good follow-ups with their memorable choruses and distinctive Anointed groove.

More than a simple hit machine, the album has depth. "Something was Missing" and "Love by Grace" look at the role of faith in the cold rain of life's disappointments; "Ooh, Baby" is a tender ode perfect for weddings; and "Must have been Angels" taps into the angelic culture craze while pointing to their Creator.

This trio's hip sound and fame will probably give these hits a chance to develop on both Christian and Rhythm and Blues radio formats; buying the album will guarantee the listener the fidelity these tunes deserve.

By Linda T. Stonehocker  (4/26/99)