|Victory Abounds | Posted August 07, 2012
Known as one-third of the writing and production team PAJAM, James J. Moss has certainly made his way in the modern gospel and soul music industry. After growing up and watching his father's group, Bill Moss and the Celestials, J. Moss was inspired to start his own career.
After attending college, his yearning to write and record still remained. This led him to sign with Aviday Records, during which he met Paul "PDA" Allen and Walter Kearney, thus completing the PAJAM team.
Following the release of The J. Moss Project, he released V2 in 2007, and Just James in 2009. The last time anyone heard from J. Moss was in 2010, with Remixed, Rare & Unreleased. But now, his fourth full-length studio album, The Other Side of Victory, brings 13 new songs into the mix.
The album begins with the upbeat track that proclaims, "God's Got It." It touches on the common struggles of the human world: being unable pay rent, unable to afford gas, going through hard times, etc. The focus here is putting our trust into God and turning to Him because He is ultimately in control.
J. Moss explains to listeners how he trusts God with "Imma Do It." At first listen, it really sounds like the beginning of a Kanye West song. But once you get into the heart of the song, Moss's focus stands apart as he talks more about his perseverance over worldly issues: "Even when they tell me no / Even when they say it ain't so / Even if they laugh at me / Even if they pass by me / Even if they hold me back / Even set me up for attack / Even if my eye can't see it / Imma trust God and believe it."
"Take Me" starts with repetitive piano chords and ultimately changes the pace from upbeat to slow and more intimate. This is where listeners really get to know J.Moss. During this track he poses the questions many of us ask: "Have I gone too far away from Your presence? / Oh, my God, I'm running back to You / Have I strayed away too far to hear what You say? / Oh, my God, I'm coming back to You."
With his next song, he asks God if he is "Strong Enough." This is another song where he discusses how to trust God again.
J. Moss keeps the serious and intimate theme with "Good & Bad." During this song he gives praises to God for loving him through his good and bad.
The next song is entitled, "Good Day," and features Kierra Sheard and Karen Clark Sheard. This catchy and upbeat track is one of my favorites on the album. If you're having a bad day, just play this track, and you can't help but shout: "I'm gonna have a good day / A good day / A good day."
"Caught Up In Love" is another song where J. Moss gives up the praises to God for the positive changes He has made in his life.
"Shout" is the next song on the album, and this gospel hit displays Moss's tenor voice in all the right ways. With the backing choir vocals, you really feel like you are in the gospel church shouting out to God.
The rhythm is changed yet again with this slower tempo song "You Did," which features James Fortune. My least favorite song on the album, I feel that it mostly consists of music rather than lyrics. And in turn, I think it lacks the spiritual punch the rest of the album has.
"Holy Is Your Word" is the next track and sounds like an R&B song rather than a gospel song, until the choir vocals come into play. This is another song where you feel that you have walked into a gospel church.
Another one of my favorites on the album is called "Prayers" and features Gospel heavy hitters Hezekiah Walker and LFC & Dorinda Clark Cole. Within the first few seconds of the song, you are immediately inspired to clap your hands and tap your feet.
"The Other Side of Victory" is the title track and is another song on my list of favorites. With the catchy chorus, this is where J.Moss reflects on his life and walk with God.
The album closes with "Keep Your Head Up." I think this is a great ending to the album, with J. Moss encouraging listeners to press on through Christ.
Although J.Moss has already made quite the name for himself with his previous successes, The Other Side of Victory is only going to add to that. With 13 solid tracks complete with many well known featured artists, meaningful lyrics, and captivating choruses, this album is guaranteed to appeal to many fans, old and new.
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