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Album Review

Being recorded in 1990, the backing and sound of "Pray for Me" is of course a little tainted by late-'80s/early-'90s slickness. But compared to most soul and gospel from that time, this sounds more genuine and has aged less. As the concert goes on, or at least as it is presented on the record, that polish also wears off and the basic sweaty qualities of the Mighty Clouds of Joy take over. Most sweaty is probably the lead singer, and the interplay between his raw, almost vulgar voice and the slick choruses gives the songs an irresistible drive. On the B-side the concert turns partly into a sermon. The preaching gets a little boring the tenth time you listen to the album, like spoken parts of an album often do, but it does add to the gospel atmosphere. And while the talk about the vices of rock & roll feels a little conservative, you probably wouldn't be listening to gospel music if you can't stand that. At the same time it is slightly amusing, regarded how much the Mighty Clouds of Joy borrowed from secular music and how close to rock they come themselves when they are at their best. ~ Lars Lovén, Rovi

Biography

Formed: 1959 in Los Angeles, CA

Genre: Inspirational

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Contemporary gospel's preeminent group, the Mighty Clouds of Joy carried the torch for the traditional quartet vocal style throughout an era dominated by solo acts and choirs; pioneering a distinctively funky sound which over time gained grudging acceptance even among purists, they pushed spiritual music in new and unexpected directions, even scoring a major disco hit. The Mighty Clouds of Joy were formed in Los Angeles during the mid-'50s by schoolmates Joe Ligon and Johnny Martin; while still in...
Full Bio
Pray for Me, The Mighty Clouds of Joy
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