One Day In The Past is the latest project by The Down East Boys that releases on August 24th on Sonlite Records. Long time members lead singer/manager Ricky Carden and baritone Daryl Paschal are joined by two new members tenor Doug Pittman, formerly of the Dixie Melody Boys, and bass Zac Barham.
The project kicks off with a nice mid tempo number, “That Would Be Amazing”, that is a perfect opening number to start out the project and I’m sure would be a great to start a concert too. The pace picks up a bit “Somebody Is Me“, which features lead singer Ricky Carden. I first became familiar with this song when it was recorded by Master’s Voice and it was not my favorite. However, I really enjoyed the DEB’s arrangement and performance. Next up is another mid tempo tune,”I’d Like To Tell It Again“, featuring Pittman. This song was not my favorite, I just could not get into it due to a repetitive chorus and some over-singing on the second verse by Pittman.
Things slow down a bit with “Beat Up Bible“, which features Carden and is the first radio single from the project. Originally recorded by Country artists Little Big Town, the arrangement and performance of the song both translate very well. “Lord I Need You To Show Up” features Paschal and is one of my favorite songs on the project. It’s a great lyric, with the first verses recalling the account of Elijah and the Prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel and our present day need for God to show up in our lives in a mighty way. Another uptempo tune “Testimony Time” keeps things moving along. Written by the great Sandy Knight, the song features Barham, Paschal, and Carden on the verses respectively and is another one of my favorites on the project.
Zac gets his feature on “Jesus Have Mercy On Me“. This great Joel Hemphill song (not Roger Horne as the liner notes mistakenly list) has long been a favorite of mine. The most well known cut of it was by George Younce and The Cathedrals on their Land Of Living project in 1987. Thankfully, unlike most bass singers in SG, Barham does not try to emulate Younce in his performance, but sings the song with his own style and interpretation, which I appreciated tremendously. I also enjoyed how the group changed up the harmonies on the second chorus opposed to the original. Every SG group needs to take notes, originality and infusing your own style on cover songs like this is very refreshing to the listener.
Next up is “Beautiful Shining Happy Golden Shore“, another song that I’ve heard several groups do, yet the DEB do a good job on this. Pittman steps forward to sing a ballad “The Blood Remains“. “Just What I Needed” is another up tempo and gives us the title of the project from a line in the second verse “he took care of my future one day in the past”. The project comes to a close with a cover of the group’s signature song “Beautiful Valley” which also features Pittman”
The Down East Boys have consistently been releasing great projects throughout the last decade and the trend continues on “One Day In The Past“. I’ve seen a couple 5 star reviews for this project and although it’s a good recording, I was not as impressed with a few songs on this project as opposed to their last cd, Ransomed, which was exceptional. However, its a solid project that both long time listeners or new fans will enjoy.
My Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
Favorite Cuts: That Would Be Amazing, Somebody Is Me, Lord I Need You To Show Up, Jesus Have Mercy On Me,
Review copy provided by Crossroads Music.