Voices of Fire season 1 review – finding the next world-beating gospel choir Hearing those harmonies.

3.5

Summary

Regardless if gospel singing is your thing, Voices of Fire will entertain audiences with a familiar format but in a new environment.

Netflix’s Voices of Fire season 1 will be released on the streaming service on November 20, 2020.


Voices of Fire season 1 follows Pharrell Williams’s hometown community leaders’ attempt to create the world’s most inspiring gospel choirs. And as you can imagine, a show that bases itself on mixing the Church community with a choir singing competition comes with a lot of hammy scenes. However, there is a charm to this as Bishop Ezekiel Williams tries to describe what he’s trying to set out to achieve.

Pharrell is on the tin for this series; he’s the star that will undeniably draw audiences in, but I will say this; as a man who does not follow any religion, I was charmed by the sense of community and the overarching faith that shines through this series. It’s easy to envy these people — how they feel so enamored by their faith, bringing happiness and direction in their every day lives.

Putting the faith aside, Voices of Fire is like any reality competition; participants turn up to auditions, the judges listen, and then they scour through the lists and pick and choose who should be in the choir. What’s absent, because it’s not a live series, is audience participation. So there’s no X-Factor or American Idol-style heckling from the public for a crowned winner. And I think, in a way, that offers more authenticity to the singing reality series; the judges use their expertise and their skills to determine whether a contestant is up to the task; analyzing vocals and standing in harmony or solo.

The whole concept of Netflix’s Voices of Fire is to find a group of people who can tour the world and show off their vocals. There’s a genuine belief that shines through this project and Pharrell Williams buys into the concept. This is not about a one-off Sunday Service; this is about large congregations; there’s this determination to “wow” people with harmonies and solo performances. While the first episode looks to drive by like a breeze for the contestants and judges, the reality is different when it comes to the final product; expect disappointments, tears, but also joy.

Regardless if gospel singing is your thing, Voices of Fire will entertain audiences with a familiar format but in a new environment.


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Daniel Hart

Daniel Hart is the Co-Founder of Ready Steady Cut and has operated as Editor-in-Chief since 2017.

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