In a world and time filled with abrupt and disconcerting changes all over the world across all nations, positive music is that flicker of hope we need most. An artist that takes pride in his devotion to God is an artist that leads with said hope. In his latest release, Hold On To Your Faith, Rusty Saunders provides the audience with enough optimism to cause jubilation for the soul and mind. While most substantial, the message is delivered in a breezy manner as to appeal not just spiritually but also commercially. We foresee a great year for Rusty Saunders.
You gotta love how Rusty kicks things off with a most normal speech: “With all of the tragedy and chaos going on in the world today, really all we have to hold on to is our faith in God. And we can’t let that go. Listen to this song.” From the get-go, the Gospel singer’s voice is clearly expansive, thick, and filled with tranquility. “No matter how hard it seems right now/ Don’t let your problems get you down/ Just know that God is with you/ And hold on to your faith,” Rusty Saunders robustly emphasizes the subject while being aided by very much an ’80s production style. The electric guitar, the organ-like synth, the very light drums, the airy bells, all carry that unmistakable note of joy and triumph specific to the times before the internet. And as the song progresses, those rich supporting voices harmonized with Rusty’s own leading vocals, vibe together with great precision complementing each other and never collapsing. Simply put: beautiful.
“It’s your faith that is the substance/ Of everything that you’re hoping for/ And it’s the evidence of the things you can’t see” – continues to speak directly in the second person the grandiose voice of Rusty Saunders. By now it is clear that Rusty has an affinity for back voices as he has every verse doubled by the additional vocalists. A most peculiar quality that will make old-school aficionados revere for the entire length of Hold On To Your Faith.
At 2:42 Rusty Saunders goes Super Saiyan mode (those unfamiliar with online lingo, explanation HERE) and boy does he put on a show! That much artistry and voice control is worthy of stadium performances not just church gatherings. His vocal performance is of serious planetary scale and you and us have been given for free a premium presentation.
Seems Rusty Saunders likes to end with just as much flare as he introduced himself with. He delves into speak-singing amongst the choir voices in the 3rd and last part of the record, “His grace is efficient for you/ Just hold on/ And don’t you worry/ Listen, I got great news right here,” consistently and faithfully abiding the song’s key. The message enhanced by Rusty’s powerful, soulful voice projects images of endurance, hopefulness, and spiritual security. This much confidence might also be explained by the fact that the singer has been doing music for over 30 years.
When is all said and done, Hold On To Your Faith is almost painfully beautiful for it gifts the listener a resounding message veiled in gorgeous vocals, harmonies, and old-school music production.
Song Credits: L. Rusty Saunders – Singer, Songwriter, Producer; Ernie L. McNair – Co-producer, Keyboard Instrumentist, Background Vocalist, Recording Engineer; Demitri Richardson – Drum Player; James Harris (Drummaboy) – Drum Programmer; Dazmond Kelly (Daz) – Guitar Player; Mike Saunders – Bass Player; Tai Bell, Corren McEAchern, Ronika Sumlin – Back Vocalists; Donte Speaks – Sound Engineer.
Written by Mariana Berdianu
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