Deitrick Haddon is back with his first album on his very own label DH Visions. ‘Masterpiece‘ was released this past Friday November 6, 2015. The album is incredible. This is his eighth album and I can tell you this may be his best album to date. It is crisp,modern, creative and relevant. The music does not take the listener for granted.
Deitrick comes out the gate with a musical sound that only he can carry off on the first track and has claimed you as a friend by the last track The entire album takes you behind the ‘persona’ to the man who has traveled a real life trial and tribulation life. You can hear the truth in his voice.
Here is a Track by Track guide to an album that has every right to be on mainstream radio as much as any other album.
Masterpiece– It is the opening track of the album and has a real R&B feeling. The rap is fresh and not ‘sing songy’ filler either. He does not throw hip hop on the track to make it modern, but to engage you on a journey. There is even a little nod to Drake. Back to Back anyone…
Sinners– The single from the album is bass heavy and showcase Deitrick’s songwriter chops. This is the song you use for teenagers and retreats to make people think. This is what one could call a club track. It has the floor bounce that one hears from cars on Saturday night.
Running– This is the movie track. You can see the visuals and feel the song going through you on a great stereo system. I couldn’t help but think about the Whispers ‘The Beat Goes On’ while I was listening to his track. This track could be a songwriters favorite. At one point in the song, you wonder where he is breathing he literally spits the lyrics so fast. When he takes the song to the crescendo in the lyric ‘Lift Your hands and tell God yes’ you are grabbed by the hand and pulled up the mountain.
Be Like Jesus- Funk is alive and well on this track! Lionel Richie and the Commodores would be proud doing this one on stage with him. Clean crisp vocals and delivery are the hallmark of this track. You will walk away humming the chorus. It’s the gospel ‘Lady You Bring Me Up’. You will chuckle when he sings ‘You’re attitude is worse than mine. You Can be a little bit more kind’.
Do It For Love -Hands down this track is one of the best tracks gospel or secular I have heard in a long time. It is strong musically and lyrically. The infectious beat reminds you of the theme song from 1960’s Dragnet television show. The song starts off in an awkward talk box place. After the intro it kicks into a bass driven song with challenging conversation. ‘I do it for love’ syncopates itself into your spirit. ‘Don’t do it for people because they change. Do it for Jesus, because he is a friend that remains the same.’ When he delivers that line you are taken by to Michael McDonald delivering stand alone lyrics in The Doobie Brothers ‘Takin’ It To The Streets’. This song invokes that same grab your tambourine feeling. The track was my absolute favorite on the album! The remix should feature Tina Campbell!
Perfect Storm – This track is the introspective conversation with Deitrick. It’s as if he invites you in to have a seat and talk with him. This is the dark track on the album. It has a serious message in its lyrics and will make you think about your own journey.
Lay It Down -‘Lay your troubles down and leave it there. You’ve got to leave your past behind.’ The song is is a Southern Gospel anthem. If you have ever seen Preachers Of L.A., you would most definitely be reminded of Deitrick’s recently passed mother-in-law Faye. You know she is smiling down on him when he sings this one! There is one line there we should all take note of . Deitrick sings: ‘If folks want to play in the dirt that you washed off years ago, let them do it.’ Good advice!
Walls Are Coming Down– This is the international track that will make the bilingual community happy. Deitrick’s vocal skill is truly showcased on this track. You can hear the range clearly. It is a poem that makes you think of Michael Jackson’s message songs. The lyric, “you’re looking at a man that ain’t got nothing to prove now’ affirms a change that is carried through the chorus that ‘These Walls are Coming Down’. This could be a pop single ready for service.
Jesus Anthem – Paging Lenny Kravitz.. Paging Lenny Kravitz. This a guitar scorcher! It could be played at any arena and fans will get pumped just listening!
Work Of Art – This song is just a sweet ode to his children. Listening to his children will definitely lighten your heart and it comes at the right point of the album. The music is simply uncomplicated and sweet.
Restore Me Again– Traditional R&B in all its truths. You are reminded of Marvin Gaye, Bill Withers and Harold Melvin. Like them, Deitrick reaches down and grabs you by the shoulders and pulls you in. He completely delivers on what good music is.
Under Control– Try listening to this song and not praise and pray. The guitars pull you in and you want to sing along. This is the song that reminds you that Deitrick knows how to minister with music. There is a distinction to music ministry that many artists lose. Deitrick shows yiu how to reach your audience without alienating them or making them self conscious. He controls the discussion and points you to a place of music. When he does this song live you will be affected! This is ‘Take Me To The King’ Part II. All he had to do is end the song with a bit of Amazing Grace and you will be finished!
On the Way -This is a song that should be called Footloose Part II. You will dance in your seat, so, you might want to hold on to your car wheel if you are in the car when this song comes on. This is a dance track if ever I heard one.It proves that gospel music can continue to grow!
Testify – This track is what I like to call Jackson-worthy. It’s bouncy and can be the song that will encourage people to share with non believers! You can see yourself doing a cross step. ‘Tomorrow is Not Promised To No Man!’
Got A Feeling– It is a car song! Just good old fashioned music. It is a fun track that fades and returns the way old tracks did once. The fun part is hearing the thank yous at the end.
Should you get it? Yes, this album is proof that there is still great music to listen to. It is creative, fun and easy to relate too. It is great music with a solid positive message. Once again Deitrick Haddon delivers music that is ahead of its time. Do It For Love, Walls Are Coming Down and On the Way deserve to be played on secular radio. They are just good tracks!