Reviewed by Peter Dilley
How (not) to write worship songs - Method A (1970s): (1) Think of a suitably devotional first line (eg, "Holy is the Lord"). (2) Repeat line and melody a few times, then chop it around a bit for the end of the verse, and/or add another line if you can think of something appropriate ("who was and is and is to come"). (3) For more verses, change a word or two ("Holy" to "Worthy" to "Jesus"). Worship songbooks used to be packed with songs of that ilk, but most songwriters these days try to be more imaginative. So why do two tracks here (the other being "Praise The Name Of Jesus") appear to be the praise and worship equivalent of the "Life On Mars" time warp TV series? I almost began to wonder whether this was a deliberate spoof, as the aforementioned "Holy Is The Lord" also features an over-the-top percussion track, resembling something dubbed across from a Weapons Of Sound CD. Lyric writing Method B (buzzword lotto). (1) Write down as many over-worn worship phrases and expressions as you can ("the name of the Lord", "lift his name up", "magnify", "banner", "at his name the demons flee"...). (2) Pick out a line, and repeat it a few times for the chorus ("I will dance for the Lord" fits the bill), (3) Put together the other lines from what's left. As with Method A, creativity is definitely optional. Maybe that's harsh, but I'm completely baffled as to how an EP of songs like this could have originated from worship leaders within the Ichthus Fellowship, who put on events with Graham Kendrick. Have Chris and Jennie Orange never sought his advice or opinions as a critical friend? The only redeeming features that I can see are that they don't expect you to pay for the CD (donations welcome though), and they offer free sheet music downloads. I'd rather pay for quality material from elsewhere.
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