With harmonies that reach high towards the heavens and a sense of excitement powering its every percussive strike, it can be said that One House Worship’s new single “Victory” is a phenomenally good look for modern gospel. Sporting plenty of features that could be deemed CCM, there’s something definitively old school about the majestic tone of “Victory” that makes the concept project that developed sound like the future of their genre. Hybridity is becoming commonplace in pop music of every strain, thus it was only a matter of time before this trend fell upon gospel, and I think that One House Worship is the right collective to introduce loyal fans to the future of their favorite style of music.
The lyrics in “Victory” don’t feel exclusive in the way that a lot of other gospel songs tend to, but instead infectiously inspiring and truer to the spirit of their source material. We’re getting so many layers of instrumentation and vocals in the mix that it would have been a little overwhelming to pile on anything beyond the straightforward verses comprising this song, and yet the substance of the words being sung to us is immeasurably touching. It feels like we’re listening to the heartfelt emissions one might read in a diary as opposed to empty lyrics present only to facilitate a bigger, brasher hook than the competition is working with. One House Worship doesn’t exist for the benefit of anything other than the message, and that becomes undebatable when breaking down their first three singles.
There’s a warmth to every instrumental part in this mix, including the percussion. Instead of sounding hollow or plasticized in a way all too typical of the beat element in other pop tracks I review, the drums are lively and produce vitality reflective of the lyrics. This is a progressive arrangement, starting us off with something ambient and smooth eventually building up to a rock-hard crossing of the finish line, and at no point does the percussion sound like an afterthought. Nothing included in “Victory” feels minimized by the other components of the track, and in a singularity-supported genre like gospel, or CCM for that matter, the potency of a single like this one is not the norm at all. Simply put, this really is an exceptional piece for reasons other than its cosmetic appeal alone.
“Victory” is the sort of feel-good track that I was waiting for and needed to hear this summer, and if it can bring some new life to this style of music, the entire pop spectrum will reap the rewards. Quality gospel isn’t traditionally nuanced but quite cutting and to the point, but the way One House Worship has been set up could change that narrative for the better. There’s experimentation in this single that I can’t find in other tracks of a similar artistic design, and even more than there was in last year’s “Done” and “So.” One House Worship is going to get big in their scene fast and that’s easy to see here.
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