Published Dec 10, 2018The legacy of a revered figure such as South African icon Nelson Mandela, by way of Mandela 100 celebrations, highlight the continued power and legacy of the late freedom fighter. The collective known as Soweto Gospel Choir uphold his name with this collection of 12 tracks sung in a range of 11 official language of the African nation.
Passion would be the word that best represents the Grammy-winning group and new album Freedom — a track such as "Umbombela" highlights hardship and the faith it takes to overcome. While it's yet another rendition of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah," this crisp take offers up multiple vocalists and a distinct African soul perspective.
The "Spiritual Medley" featuring "Jesus on the Mainline," "This Joy That I Have," and "When the Saints Go Marching In" deliver a mainstream gospel take; the mighty "Umbombela" speaks its glory; the chants of "Hamba Nahi Thixo somandla" goes minimal in arrangement with a maxed-out intent. The joyful excellence on display make Freedom something that feels timeless, inspirational and meditative. (Shanachie)