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Sounds like … the vocal command of Tonéx and Micah Stampley, plus some of the multi-styled praise-and-worship stamp of Israel Houghton.At a glance … sermonizing and stream-of-consciousness improvisation weigh down on what otherwise could've been a strong praise-and-worship album.Track ListingGood Hear My Prayer Be Strong Be Strong (reprise) Created To Worship I Know Why I Am Here Healing Worship Praise Is What I Do Awesome Let It Rise One Pure & Holy Passion One Pure & Holy Passion (Reprise) Ignite My Fire I Don't Know Why All Day
If you're a gospel music enthusiast, chances are you've either heard, sung along, or broken down to—perhaps all three—the rousing "Praise Is What I Do," Shekinah Glory Ministries' stirring title track from their 2002 gold-certified album. Despite the song's impact—it is said to have brought the house down at the 2003 Stellar Awards—few know its writer, William Murphy III. His major-label debut, All Day…The William Murphy Project, proves he's a capable worship leader, effortlessly multi-tasking as vocalist, master of ceremonies, band principal and choir director.?
Though All Day is being billed as a praise-and-worship offering, this focus gets blurred when a good portion of the proceedings consist of Murphy's utter reliance on sermonizing, charismatic sentiment and improvisation. "I Know Why I'm Here," for example, is a revealing testimony about his childhood, but its didacticism is not necessarily conducive to adoration. For a live worship recording, the power and euphoria of this and other moments are certainly palpable on tape, but the antics become tedious upon repeated spins. The listener is the one who ultimately gets the short end of the stick, as the lengthy epics and reprises are cut short through the use of abrupt fade-ins and fade-outs.
A shame, really, because there are some truly inspired moments on the disc, particularly Murphy's now-classic "Praise Is What I Do," which is presented here in a much more abbreviated fashion than the drawn-out original. The song serves as the turning point for All Day, as the concert becomes much more contained and congregational from that song forward. Things also get decidedly less "gospel," with "Awesome" and "Let It Rise" sounding more like standard-issue praise-and-worship anthems than Murphy's choice blend of traditional and contemporary gospel. It's an irregular debut—there's even some breezy R&B tacked on at the very end—but it's likeable if you're not one to listen to just one brand of gospel all day.