Disclaimer: All views presented in this Album Review are those of the reviewer and not of DJ Wade-O
For a few years it seems, the high energy of one single has been the power source propelling the career of one brother’s ministry. The song has led to multiple features, tours, award shows and interviews. The song even made its way into the Gospel music arena, and is STILL gaining popularity today. I’m talking about none other than Uncle Reece and his breakthrough song “Until I pass Out”.
I could also say “breakout song” as well, because the intensity of that one song has carved him a unique reputation amongst singers/rappers, as his uninhibited form of worship brings a type of freedom that true worshippers know very well. With “Until I Pass Out” being his only single for so long, there has been much anticipation as to what was going to be next for Uncle Reece. We now have our answer in his new album: Bold. Many wondered what could we really try to expect to hear in an album from an artist who goes so hard in every song that he “passes out”? Well, come along with me, as I unpack the essence of what makes this new album Bold.
Musically, there have not been many artists who were almost UN-categorizeable from a genre standpoint. These artists would sing, rap, and shout from song to song, and sometimes all three within one song. Years ago, Canton Jones was a pioneer of this area of Gospel music, unashamed of his urban music background, love for Christ, and love for rap/hip hop style tracks. While Reece is not a replica of CaJo, he is certainly now running in a lane that Canton created.
Let me explain, If Cajo hadn’t carved this lane of being able to alternate between rapping and singing, and making it somewhat acceptable, there may have never been a place for Uncle Reece to take it to the level that he has taken it to. In some regards its reminiscent of the story in II Kings 2 featuring the prophets Elijah and Elisha. Listening to Bold, one can’t help but observe that the spirit that rests on Canton’s music also rests on Reece’s music (II Kings 2:15).
In content and in concept, Bold is turned up to another level. This album is far from being just one note as it contains multiple styles of Gospel music. Of course, you’ve got your urban gospel songs like the previously mentioned “Until I Pass Out” and the very catchy second single “I Can’t Help Myself” featuring Jor’dan Armstrong.
Uncle Reece also shows the depth of his song writing skills on Bold. Reece breaks down how the glory of The Lord is displayed through all that we see in the head-nodder “Creation”. His beautiful chorus writing flows so well with the music of this track. Another song in this vein worth noting is “Joseph, Job, & David”, a song with verses from the viewpoint of each legendary biblical character. If you’re trying to figure what this song could be like, imagine if these biblical figures wrote rap verses to God thankful for what He has done in their lives.
Then of course, you’ve got your worship ballads. Now, I have to warn you, Uncle Reece’s passion and writing has the huge potential to leave you face down on your floor in worship. Anticipate singing along to songs like ‘He found me in “My Mess”’ as every believer can relate to Reece’s testimony on the song. The album’s third single, “He Died and He Rose”, was released with a video around Resurrection Sunday of this year. This song is a passionate description of Jesus’ account as he was being led to Calvary. It is worth noting that the album version has a few added production elements that differ from the video version of this song. While the video version is a different mix of the track, both versions help you see Jesus’ trip to calvary in new light.
To tie it all together, on “Have Your Heart”, Uncle Reece teams up with Canton Jones to sing about how God wants nothing in this world but our hearts as He desires us to be open vessels, usable for His desire to touch the lost and broken-hearted.
To be Bold you must be unashamed of your stance and unafraid of whatever backlash could come from your stance. We learned that Uncle Reece doesn’t care what any one thinks of his actions from “Until I pass Out”. That same driving force echos through all the songs in a positive manner.
“Revolution Music” is full of bars that explain Reece’s mindset for even doing music like this. However, Its not in that song alone that Uncle Reece talks about his music life and the struggles he has faced along the way. “Where I belong” is his attempt to inspire others who may be trying to make it happen in their own lives. Reece encourages us to continue pressing on, despite the odds or what others have told us about our future. There is even a social commentary song called “LeVar”, based off LeVar Burton the former host of “Reading Rainbow,” in which he admonishes our generation for being apathetic. You have to be a Bold person in your ministry to challenge your listeners in this manner.
This album is a complete serving for those desiring more than just a slice from Uncle Reece. If you love singing, then you’re going to like this album because almost every song makes you want to sing along with them. Musically, the flow from song to song does a great job of keeping your attention and rides a groove perfect for playing in your car or playing around the house while you’re doing work or entertaining guests. Its just an excellent album. The only gripe, if you could even call it that, was adjusting to the new version of “He Died And Rose.”
Uncle Reece is a unique artist, and in a day and age where more and more artists are beginning to stray away from staying true to their form of art , I loved seeing Uncle Reece be himself and thrive while doing so. I highly recommend that you pick up Bold and add it to your music collection ASAP.