Go Tell It On The Mountain
Real World / Virgin Records


Blind Boys Of Alabama Go Tell It Art.jpg (38183 bytes)

This is another one of those potentially wonderful albums that is irretrievably marred by special guests. The Blind Boys Of Alabama do not need special guests and they are best when left to their own specialty, good old harmony based Southern gospel. They don’t need Me’ Shell Ndegeocello narrating “O Come All Ye Faithful” over the top of the Boys’ sublime voices. There’s also a limp reading of “Away In A Manger” with George Clinton distractingly shouting or exclaiming lyrics all over lead singer George Scott. This idea smacks of a record company sacrificing a beautiful record for the sales potential of “special” guests. Luckily, a few of the guests do it right. Chrissie Hynde leads a melancholy “In The Bleak Midwinter,” Mavis Staples fits in perfectly for “Born In Bethlehem” and Tom Waits (?!?) nails “Go Tell It On The Mountain.” Truth be told, however, none of them light fires like when The Blind Boys do it alone. “Last Month Of The Year” is a glorious toe tapping, hand clapping, soul-stirring testament to the season while “Silent Night” wraps it all up like a beautiful Christmas present. Over all, this is still a tasty box of candy. Just watch out, some of the pieces are sour.


Chris McKay /