To celebrate Easter 2005, the Gaithers and their extended clan of Homecoming Friends journeyed to the Holy Land for a spate of inspired performances. JERUSALEM, one of two records (along with ISRAEL HOMECOMING) documenting these outings, opens with a flourish on the exotic title track by the Hoppers. While Guy Penrod returns the affair to a more reserved note on "Resurrection," the dominant spirit of the record is one of playful jubilation. Accordions dance about on Bekki Smith's joyful "The Mighty One of Israel," while Mark Lowry and the Isaacs goof on the mixture of Hebrew and American Southern cultures on the novelty "Shalom Y'all."
"Can't Stop Talkin' About Him" reveals that the Gaithers have more of an affinity for R&B than one might imagine, as does the Dixie Hummingbirds-esque "Moses, Take Your Shoes Off." The latter comes a few tracks after "The River Keeps A-Rollin'," reminding listeners how surprisingly narrow the gap is between bluegrass and soul. The celebration gets back to a simple feel with the moving "The Blood Will Never Lose Its Power." JERUSALEM maintains a balanced spirit of merriment and devotion, honoring the most cherished of lands.