Reviewed by Tempestas Ink
It has been often commented that some of the best-known Christian contemporary songs – from ‘O Holy Night’ to ‘I Surrender’ – tend to leave an indelible mark merely because they are written in odd time signatures; in this case, it is 12/8. There may be a point to that. Eventually, though, a good song becomes a great song by virtue of its lyrics and the conviction within them, and, of course, the relatability factor to the listener as he/she prepares for a soul-cleanse apart from the uniqueness in musicality. And, JuiceThaBlackBeethoven, a.k.a. “Juice”, has managed to tick those boxes and churn out a masterful rendition in the form of his song, titled “Called”.
The melodic structure itself sets apart ‘Called’ from many of the rest in the sense that semi-periodic oscillations between the major and minor of the F key (in which the song is written) have been incorporated. These key oscillations are done, also bearing in mind the lyric – where the major form of F expresses conviction, joy, and hope; while the minor represents sentiments of doubt, solemnity, and, at times, uncertainty – an approach that Juice has put to effective use, no doubt. And given that the lyrics incorporate the theme of being called by God to fulfill one’s purpose – read Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Moses – it works very well. The first line of the song itself is bound to capture the listener’s attention – it is part story and part monologue. And Juice’s spirited vocals – I was irresistibly reminded of John Legend – greatly uplift the quality of the song on its own. Expressive, with a dynamically powerful timbre right from the anthemic highs of “I am called” to the soft, resolved mids of “I’ve really made this choice, so I go” at the bridge, Juice pours his heart into every word of the song.
And the piano serves as the backbone of this piece, with some very impressively cool seventh-chord, and suspended, voicings written right at the intro, before getting back into familiar territory, with the rest of the elements including the bass, drums, and electric guitar making their presence at all the right moments.
Overall, ‘Called’ is a runaway winner in its own right. Juice can be proud of what he has accomplished by striking a balance between being creative to inducing a sense of relatability for the listener.
About JuiceThaBlackBeethoven Born in the birthplace of Jazz (New Orleans, Louisiana), and raised in the Rock And Roll Capital of the World (Cleveland, OHIO), Julius "JUICE" Davis, Jr., (aka
JuicethaBlackBeethoven) is a 3rd generation Pianist, Choir Director, and Music Teacher..."JUICE" ( as he LOVES to be called) is a classically-trained pianist (Juice absolutely LOVES the piano music of Beethoven and Chopin..., but JUICE can also ROCK IT OUT on some Elton John, Little Richard, Billy Joel, Journey and Jerry Lee Lewis (and "JUICE" can out-do ALL OF THEM)....but his true passion is to write and compose songs in ALL GENRES...so, YES, he can ROCK, but he can also sincerely praise GOD, as you will hear from his latest Contemporary Christian Pop song, "CALLED," sung by Ricky Reinoso....enjoy, and be BLESSED....