For diesel-powered, raise-the-rafters gospel-driven praise music, it's impossible to beat Israel & New Breed's Live from Another Level. Thanks to regular touring all over the States and Africa, Israel Houghton's name has become synonymous with the cutting edge. With books of his charts in almost every next-generation church across the country, and his melodies running through the minds of a great many gospel devotees, Houghton has established himself as the Christian voice of his day. Defying categorization, New Breed is popular with black, white, and Latino congregations alike. This is no surprise, considering their daring instrumental and vocal performances, top-shelf, edgy arrangements, and constant musical invention. In a genre where artists lean toward an increasingly homogeneous, safe, no-risks sound, Israel proves that audiences hunger for something more. With two discs full of R&B, Afro-pop, salsa, languid balladry, and funk abounding, Live from Another Level will certainly satiate that appetite. The opportunity to hear on disc the free-flowing interaction between stage and congregation is a precious one indeed, and certainly the finest context in which to appreciate this musical giant. With a pleasant mix of both original material and crowd favorites, Israel & New Breed will be impossible to beat for years to come.
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AllMusic Review by Evan C. Gutierrez
Track Listing - Disc 1
Track Listing - Disc 2