Blind Boys of Alabama: I'll Find a Way (Sony Masterworks) - album review | Under the Radar - Music Magazine

Blind Boys of Alabama

I’ll Find a Way

Sony Masterworks

Oct 31, 2013 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share


Make no bones about itBlind Boys of Alabama are an American gospel institution. Coming from these longstanding delegates of the genre, even a slapdash record of tried and true gospel songs would still have shifted its fair share of units. But here we are with I'll Find a Wayessentially a collaborative album with artists who've largely only found prominence in the last half a decade or so. Needless to say, the record marks a bold move for Blind Boys.

Atop this pile of collaborators is Bon Iver mastermind Justin Vernon, recruited to handle production duties, help curate song selection, and gather guest singers and musicians. Consequently, the likes of Sam Amidon, Shara Worden of My Brightest Diamond, Merrill Garbus of tUnE-yArDs, and Patty Griffin all lend their vocal cords to the record, and I'll Find a Way is thus a record of constant reinvention. But these guest artists aren't the only youthful force on the recordage is but a number, after all, and Blind Boys of Alabama are as joyful and vibrant a vocal cohort as ever.

The decision to hand the reins of production to Vernon reinvigorates this music, making it one of Blind Boys' most unique releases in years. But it also introduces gospel music to an entirely new audience. Harvesting collaborators from a younger generation could easily have come off a desperate lunge for credibility and relevancy, but instead Blind Boys of Alabama have struck upon something quite brilliant indeed. (www.blindboys.com)

Author rating: 7/10

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Average reader rating: 9/10



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