STYLE: Pop RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 166108-25839 LABEL: Hillsong Music 9320428325792 FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1 RELEASE DATE: 2017-06-09 RRP: £13.00
Reviewed by Tony Cummings
Cross Rhythms has taken its time in reviewing Hillsong United's latest - it is been number one in the UK's Christian gospel charts since its release in June. It unquestionably deserves its huge sales and is surely one of the finest modern worship albums ever. Gone are the oversimplistic lyrics and predictable stadium rock arrangements of old. The lyrics are in fact both powerful and poetic. Take "Shadow Step": "You met me at the sinners' table/I found you waiting by the well, unexpected/You are always there/Tracing all my steps." Or consider the powerful "So Will I (100 Billion X)" which doesn't just express our reverence at the magnificence of God's creation but reminds us that everything from the divine hand is an act of worship ("And as you speak 100 billion galaxies are born/In the vapour of your breath the planets form/If the stars are made to worship so will I/I can see your heart in everything you made/Every burning star signal fire and grace/If creation sings your praises so will I." Such poetic and profound lyrics need epic productions and Michael Guy Chislett and Joel Houston deliver these, drawing from the Hillsong musicians epic soundscapes which deftly avoid the clichés of congregational worship and sci-fi movies. Vocals too are gripping, Joel Houston and Matt Crocker deftly deliver the haunting title track while the voice of Taya "Oceans" Smith brings tenderness, passion and reverence to several of these gripping songs. All in all, a classic of modern worship.
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There’s a certain humility and attitude of reverence that has long been giving birth to the undeniable excellence of Hillsong UNITED’s music, and this has never been more evident than it is in the band’s brand new album Wonder. Filled with pulsing tempo, bright tones and colourful melodies, Wonder is a departure sonically from the band’s contemplative 2015 release, Empires. Following a theme of awe and “wonder,” the new album finds Hillsong UNITED more amazed by the awesomeness of grace than by their storied career and on-going list of accolades.
Teeming with the lyrical imagery and vocal prowess that fans have come to expect from Hillsong UNITED, Wonder is sure to be an instant classic. Featuring songs “Future Marches In,” “So Will I” and the energetic title track “Wonder” fans are sure to be listening to this album for years to come.
“Life with God is fun, its an adventure, it is grace, freedom, peace and everything in between”.
The multi award winning, platinum selling sensation Hillsong UNITED has been topping charts, dominating airwaves and filling venues across the globe for the past decade.
Hillsong United is committed to creating a musical expression that is almost uncomfortable in its uniqueness, their mission is to write songs that awaken churches and individuals to the fact that we are redeemed and called into the story of God.
2. Shadow Step
3. Future Marches In
4. So Will I (100 Billion X)
5. Splinters and Stones
6. Glimmer In The Dust
7. Greatest Of These
8. Shape Of You Heart
9. Not Today
11. Rain / Reign
12. Water To Wine