For over a quarter century, urban gospel has been shaped and framed by Fred Hammond. From his start as bass player with The Winans, to his launching of the group Commissioned, to Radical for Christ and beyond, Hammond has become a staple in the gospel music industry, influencing artists from Marvin Sapp to Boyz II Men.
Known as the “Architect of Urban Worship”, Hammond’s distinctive tenor voice has been the soundtrack for many worship teams while defining a generation. After a three-year recording hiatus, Hammond returns with his latest effort titled, Love Unstoppable. The fifteen-track is another certifiable hit for the gospel legend who takes a simplistic approach with an infectious musical result.
Not surprisingly, Hammond, an accomplished producer, handles production efforts for this album whose focus is both vertical and horizontal. Hammond’s career has been marked by his ability to express his heart for worship, authentically leading the people towards the worship of God.
From start to finish, uptempo to ballad, Hammond masterfully and creatively shares the unchanging nature and character of God. From the energetic “Awesome God” to the mid-tempo groove of “Find No Fault”, Hammond presents characteristics of God in a musically accessible manner that will appeal to musical scholars and novices alike.
Fred Hammond grooves have always been the most organic and infectious in the business and this album continues that trademark.
“I Know What He’s Done” is reminiscent of 70s funk, with Hammond showcasing his ability to remember and reflect on God’s goodness. “Nobody Like You” is yet another groove heralding the matchless nature of God.
Perhaps the most serious case of groove-filled singing comes with the radio hit “They That Wait”. On this track, Hammond teams with label mate and fellow vocal legend John P. Kee, with an extended version of this wildly infectious song where both Hammond and Kee sing like there’s no tomorrow!! Of all of their duets, this could easily be THE most memorable of all.
Hammond’s lyrical prowess has been well documented and he continues to amaze with his worship set. “Lost In You Again” contains lyrics like “…my search will not end til I find myself lost in you again…” The R&B/soul nature of “Take My Hand” is the perfect backdrop for the impassioned cry of the believer to be led by the Savior.
Other amazing tracks include “Best Thing That Ever Happened” and the heart-tugging “Lord How I Love You”.
For the first time, Hammond includes his children on the album, as BreeAnn Michelle and Darius Sean appear on the album’s opening “Thank You (Prelude)”.
Hammond’s return to a simplistic approach simply works. Each song is contagious and is guaranteed to showcase the unstoppable love of the Father. Without question, the Grammy-award winning vocalist and Detroit transplant has carved out another notch on his lofty musical belt. Hammond continues creating his long line of timeless music that is sure to continue to define a generation of worshippers and fantastic music.
This album is a must-have in your musical catalogue and is easily one of 2009’s most outstanding releases.
Album Release Date: September 29, 2009
Verity Gospel Music Group
— review by Gerard Bonner —