Provident Music Distribution and RCA created the project, "Elvis Presley: The Gospel Series". These CD series, only available through Christian retail and gift markets, will consist of five discs for a total of over fifty-six irreplaceable rare recordings performed by Elvis during his history-making career. The first two releases in this series, titled "Nearer My God to Thee" and "He Is My Everything" just came out.
The CD's are are done in the same manner. It looks like an image of Elvis is printed on canvas with a little decoration on it. The idea is nice, but the result looks a bit "messy" in the way that the fabric isn't clean. Both the front and back cover of the booklet are done this way. The images are the same as in the "Peace In The Valley" booklet, so is the printed decoration on the canvas. Inside we only find the tracklistings and the usual writer, producer and date information.
We expected a bit more text on Elvis' gospel work, since this CD is supposed to be "an exciting opportunity for Christian music fans and fans of Elvis to experience the important gospel works of the undisputable king of rock 'n' roll" according to Provident Music. To which Michael Omansky adds "We are excited to have the opportunity to bring the power of Elvis Presley's gospel music into the Christian market through Provident" Since there's a link with "The Complete Gospel Recordings" why not use that information for this new audience.
As said before, the project "Elvis Presley: The Gospel Series" will ultimately consist of over fifty-six irreplaceable rare recordings performed by Elvis during his history-making career. All releases in this series contain 14 tracks. These first two releases contain a nice mixture of Gospel recordings from the sixties and seventies. The sound quality is good, and that's about all we can say on the content. When you enjoy Elvis' Gospel music, both volumes give a great listening.
This series can be a good introduction of Elvis in the Christian stores, gaining a new public, and in return a nice way to introduce that public to Elvis. But we have some doubt if this goal is reached by 5 single releases when there's a 3 CD set containing the complete Elvis gospel collection. Besides the price we can find no other reason for this.
As for the Elvis CD Collector, we can only say, the same tracks in a different sequence with new cover art. And since they are only available through Christian stores ... happy hunting (e.g. at WorldWideElvis).