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Sound Off A Cappella

Walk On Water - Single (2018)

4.0

Review By Catherine Lewis

December 31, 2018

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We've heard a few singles and full-length recordings from Boston-based CAL group Sound Off. The group is back with Walk On Water, a female-led cover of the Thirty Seconds to Mars song. It's a bright, energetic rendition with a few arrangement choices that separate it from the original; kudos to arranger Kevin Guest for those details. The layered, shadowing "walk on water" in the song's final choruses makes it sound like two different subgroups are performing the song as a call-and-response or as a round. It's just enough of a subtle addition to stay true to the original but not subject listeners to its repetitive and boring ending.

It's the beginning of the song that doesn't quite work for my ears. With a female singer, the beginning verse is not quite as bombastic as the original, which is pleasant, but the group doesn't push that difference enough. I wish that the singers had really emphasized this as a stylistic choice and adjusted the arrangement to accommodate that interpretation. As a result, it sounds like soloist Megan Kettmann doesn't have the brashness to keep up with the song, when instead, I think the group was actively choosing to dial the verses back a bit but didn't re-arrange the song accordingly.

Overall, Walk On Water is what we've heard from Sound Off: a solid lead and great group singing on a well-known rock song. But much like some of the other Sound Off material I've heard, I wish the group pushed the arrangement even further than this.


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