Christ Walker EP
Independent (release date: December 11, 2018)
By Bob Marovich
Although not all gospel music from Jamaica has historically been reggae-flavored, the artist known as Vessel infuses his praise songs with electronic reggae on his EP Christ Walker.
Singing in a staccato Jamaican patois, Vessel is as much a Christ Walker as the EP and title track suggest. In one way or another, the selections are about accepting the responsibility of true discipleship. For example, on “The Way I Go,” Vessel asks Jesus, “the way and the light,” to order his steps (Psalm 119:133). “Wherever He leads me, I’ll follow,” is a mantra on the title track.
Even the final song, “Granny,” contains elements of following. It is a loving tribute to Vessel’s grandmother, who he says taught him to pray, to read, to respect others, to show “kindness and love for all” and to follow Jesus and answer his call. Now that Granny’s gone, Vessel aims to continue her legacy through his own life “lenses.”
The melodies flow with that simple, easy rock steady beat while the highly personal lyrics are sufficiently repetitive to encourage listeners to sing along.
Avlon Coleman, better known as Chosenvessel or Vessel, was born in Jamaica but moved with his mother to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, in 1997. He was once a member of a gospel group called DMC that formed in 2003 but is now a solo artist. His reggae style pays homage to his native Jamaica while his Christian music pays homage to his upbringing and belief system.
Three of Five Stars
Pick: “The Way I Go”