359. The Prize – Alwyn Wall Band

THE PRIZE (1977)

Alwyn Wall Band

One half of famed British Jesus Music duo Malcolm and Alwyn released a few rock albums after the duo split in the late 70’s. One was released by Larry Norman’s Solid Rock label called “Invisible Warfare” and will also appear on this list. This Lennon & McCartney influenced gem is filled with great British pop. The band Wall put together had a young guitar player Norman Barrett whose only albums are worthy of consideration.

The album was very well received and the band made great strides not only in their home country but in the US as well. In fact, it is said that they could have been a staple in the burgeoning US Christian Music scene had Wall been able to secure his Visa, but was unable to do so.

Wall may be one of the finest songwriters of his era that no one really knows. His writing was equal to anything Larry Norman, Randy Stonehill or terry Taylor had written at the time. He also had an uncanny knack, especially on this album, to write a melody that conveyed the message simply and memorably. The opening track, Fly Me, is directed by Barrett’s great guitar hook and reminds the listener that what is most important is to do what God wants you to do.

The tribute to “South California” is a joyful number the has a distinctly Beach Boys influenced melody and vocal arrangement. “Music Maker” recognizes the influence of God inspiring a man to write music and be creative. “That’s Life” is a favorite of mine as it really hit the funky groove style of the time and a great lyrical twist and Barrett’s finest work on the album.

One of the best aspects of the album is the refusal to be pigeon-holed into the normal Jesus Music of the day lyrically. Wall branches out thematically on this album and shows the wonderful diversity of topics a Christian is free to explore within a Biblical worldview.

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  1. Shawn McLaughlin
    October 31, 2010 at 11:17 pm

    I picked this up from a small, re-issue label in PA in about 2003, along with The Bill Mason band. It is great.

    • nicolaskev@gmail.com
      May 24, 2011 at 3:24 am

      hi there
      please tell me how i can get a copy of *the prize* i had it years back on vinyl.
      thanks
      kevin

  2. David
    November 2, 2010 at 9:07 pm

    Man I would love to have this on CD.

  3. tim
    December 22, 2010 at 2:59 am

    One of the best christian albums of all time. Should be ranked much higher

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