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REVIEW: Poet Voices – Everybody Needs Jesus

Producer: Information Not Provided
Record Label: Berry Hill Records/Main Street Music & Entertainment
Website: www.philcrossmusic.com

Back in the 90s, Phil Cross and Poet Voices was one of the top Southern Gospel groups.  Phil Cross wrote some of the best songs in gospel music many of which are still being performed in churches today.  They were some of my favorites, and his song “Miracle in Me” still reminds me today of my late best friend who sang it with his wife in his church many times.   Sadly, the group disbanded for a number of years, but Phil brought the group back together after 15 years with the same style and music that we grew to love in the 90s.  Now the group, consisting of Phil Cross (lead), Donny Henderson (baritone), Nik Holland (tenor) and Cyle Cornish (bass), have developed a new project entitled Everybody Needs Jesus Christ, a title so timely in this day we live in.  I am so privileged to have been asked to review it for you.

The project has ten cuts which range from the traditional quartet style to upbeat.  It starts with a fast-moving song, which is their first radio single, entitled “Twice on Sunday.”  This song is all about singing about Jesus everyday and as the title says, twice on Sunday. It has strong four-part harmony, a bass solo from Cyle Cornish and a little Johnny Cash number mixed in finishing it off.  It is a great song to introduce this project.

The second song is my favorite. I hope they make it a radio single, because I know it will be a popular request.  It is called “It Will Be Finished.”  The rest of the title line is “when my Lord is through.” To me, it is powerful and a song of hope and restoration.  One line in the song says it all: “There is no failure that is ever final as long as Jesus has a say.” 

The next offering gives us a glimpse of what heaven will be like.  It is titled “Everybody’s Song”. The song will be everybody’s and as the song goes: “in heaven no whether you could sing.”  It will be where we will all memorize and harmonize.                  

What I think is a very soulful song is “Is There Anybody Like Me”.  The title tells it all.   A simple question that Christians should be able to answer.  It talks about lifting up your hand and stand to your feet. Nik Holland is featured on the next cut “Triumphant Cross.” This is what I would call “a victory song.” When Jesus died, those who watched saw one thing, but we see something else.  As the lines of the song say: “this is not battlefield where heaven was defeated” and “this is not an arena where a champion was defeated.”  Those lyrics were from the perspective of those at the cross. Though they saw defeat, he saw victory—everlasting victory.

The title song, “Everybody Needs Jesus Christ,” is next and just like most of the songs on this project, the title tells it all.  Everybody needs Jesus as the song says: “from the homeless to those who are broken and beaten down and finally even Gospel singers.” We all need him. 

In 2017, Poet Voices once again became a quartet, and the next song is one of those classic-style quartet numbers.  “Goin Down this Road” is a fun song where the mention of chickens and turkeys will cause the listener to smile as they hear it.   This song will lift your spirits as once again we hear about our spiritual walk just in a little different way.

An author has to have a cover for every book they write.  It gives the reader some details of what is inside.  The song “The Cover” is a powerful song about our book and Jesus’s book.  Our book tells about our life but as the main line of the song says: “he took the cover off his and put his cover on my book, after writing the final chapter.”  That line is one of the most powerful lines I have heard in a song.  Our cover tells all about our book but Jesus knows it is unfinished until he writes the conclusion.  This will be a favorite when it is released.

Two of the lines of the next song goes “we are sinners, saved and forgiven” and “we are forever winners all because we know him.”  “This is Who We Are” is an upbeat song about those of u, Christians and what we have become because of Jesus.  

The final song is “It Was Not Easy.”  It tells how hard it was for Jesus to go the Cross for all of us.  The rest of the line that followed the title is “it was not easy baring the cross and saving my Soul.”  If you have enjoyed Phil Cross written songs and the smooth sound of Poet Voices, you will enjoy this 10-song project.  I know I did. 

Dave Angle
Staff Writer/Reviewer