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Still Standing

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The Advocate



Still Standing by The Classic Imperials

Reviewed by Dale Lewis

"Whether you were, are, or are not yet an Imperials fan, don’t hesitate to pick up a copy of Still Standing today!"

Performing the back-up vocals for Elvis Presley in the late 60s/early 70s, legendary vocal group “The Imperials” have been a force in the music industry for five decades. Shortly after leaving Elvis, The Imperials embraced the beginning of the contemporary Christian music movement (CCM) with open arms.

For as long as I remember, I’ve been a fan of the Imperials style whether you call it classic, vintage, or old school. Known for their tight, powerful vocals and harmonies and their on-the-edge arrangements, the Imperials delivered time and time again. With a continual string of contemporary hits like, “The Trumpet of Jesus,” “Praise The Lord,” “Stand by The Power,” and “The Old Gospel Ship,” the Imperials performances are simply iconic.

After a decade of silence, they’ve returned with their newest offering, Still Standing. Original patriarch Armond Morales and long standing member David Will, welcome former lead vocalist Paul Smith after a 30-year break from the group, and newcomer Rick K. Evans. The four are now The Classic Imperials.

“Live My Life” kicks-off the CD with an anthem of praise featuring acoustic guitar, electric piano and Paul belting out the lead. In “No More Looking Over My Shoulder,” Rick takes on the lead vocal with sweet clarity in this guitar laden undercurrent, sounding a little like Rascal Flatts. Sweet salvation is proclaimed through honky tonk piano and steel guitar riffs in a genuine revival rocker titled “Ebenezer.”
“Love Speaks for Itself” is the only title that includes saxophone and a classic gospel quartet arrangement with sweet harmonies. Armond’s rich, silky voice supplies the narration within “Something’s Wrong with the World.” This title is similar to a Carman storytelling arrangement which include key phrases “runs in the blood, sick to the soul and a deadly disease.”

The musicians assembled for this project provide solid support in this diverse collection of instrumental renderings. Reviewer’s favourites include: “No More Looking Over My Shoulder,” “Been Through The Water,” and “Brighter Day.”
Whether you were, are, or are not yet an Imperials fan, don’t hesitate to pick up a copy today!


Dale Lewis now mans the front desk at the EFCA (The Evangelical Free Church of America) National Office in Minneapolis, MN. He was the graphic designer/pre-press production artist for over twelve years before being asked to step into this new role. Prior to that, he was the publications manager at his alma mater, Northwestern College in St. Paul, MN in the public relations office as well as the adviser to the college’s yearbook. He's a director/actor/writer for the Hope Church (Oakdale, MN) adult drama worship team and was the senior editor of the church newsletter. He's also written two collections of poetry, “Whispers of Assurance” and “On Life: Constant Communion Without Ceasing” as well as a devotional entitled “Eternal Education.” He and his family live in Oakdale, Minnesota.