Written by: David Cooper
Catalogue Number: TFK003CD
theREIGN’s debut CD features a variety of musical styles from all-out rock worship to gentle, guitar based ballads, including three songs recorded live in concert at St Barnabas Church, Swanland.
All 10 songs were written by lead singer David Cooper, and the original studio recording of Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer can be found on David’s original solo album I Will Follow. Listen to the songs using the player below, and open the boxes for additional information and reviews.Buy CD
Following his 2002 solo release, it soon became apparent that David needed a full band to faithfully re-create his sound live. Since then, The Reign have evolved, and are making their mark in and around the Hull area. Listening to the album, as a whole, it does run like a live praise & worship event. The opening “We Are One” sends visions of people singing, clapping and dancing to your imagination. “Sing to the Lord” and “Thank You” slow things down a bit and, as well as sounding a little alike, I found the repetitiveness of the former rather grating on the ear. “Kyrie Eleison” has a nice stripped-down acoustic sound and, in similar mould, “Not Alone” is beautifully sung. There’s an interesting arrangement of the old hymn “Praise His Name”, plus a live recording of “Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer”, and both work well. David’s vocals still slip into the Dylanesque style, at times, but I think that it’s this quality that helps to make an appealing listen. At times, there seems to be over use of instruments – like on “I Love The Rain”, and, perhaps, this needs a some attention. But, otherwise, The Reign can be well satisfied with this release. 8/10.
“Sometimes things just work. You get stressed, worried and fretful in advance but, when you get to it, something amazing happens and everything just seems to fall into place.” So begin David Cooper’s sleeve notes for his first collection of self-penned worship songs, performed by theREIGN: Ivan Carruthers (drums), David Cooper (acoustic/vocals), Kathryn Cooper (keyboards/vocals), Jo Fussey (vocals), Phil Gray (acoustic guitar), Dave Keegan (electric guitars), John Osbourne (electric/string bass), and Debbie Simpson (vocals). One listen to the album is all that is needed to see what he means. It’s all there – gorgeous harmonies, intricate guitar work, catchy riffs – and the songwriting too is of a high standard and makes this more than just a first outing from a newish band. Highlights include Kyrie Eleison, which would sit snugly on a worship album from a major label; and Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer, one of three bonus tracks recorded live at St Barnabas, Swanland. In the room for improvement department, the worship ballads seem to outweigh the rockier tracks, and it would have been nice to know more of who did what. Bearing in mind the plethora of worship material available, the real selling point here is that it is local musicians praying for their city and encouraging those around them, and with suitable encouragement from both this team could go on to greater things – or to quote David: “While the album may be complete, theREIGN’s journey is just beginning.”
Ivan Carruthers (Drums), David Cooper (Vocals & Acoustic Guitar), Kathryn Cooper (Vocals), Jo Fussey (Vocals), Phil Gray (Acoustic Guitar), Dave Keegan (Electric Guitar), John Osbourne (Bass Guitar & String Bass), Debbie Simpson (Vocals)
Helen Webber (Violin: tracks, 9-11), Nick Dean (Trumpet & Flugelhorn: tracks 1 & 7)
Produced by Dave Keegan & David Cooper
Tracks 1-8 Engineered & Mixed by Dave Keegan
Tracks 9-11 Engineered & Mixed by Geoff Waring
Post Production by Jon Blamire @ The Digital Audio Co.
Photographs by Mark Kensett
Artwork & Design by Mark Kensett & David Cooper