The Message - The Message In A Bottle: Jesus, The One Who Saves
STYLE: Pop RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 158605-23820 LABEL: Elevation ELE2168D FORMAT: CD Album RELEASE DATE: 2015-11-30 RRP: £9.99
Reviewed by Tim Maiden
'The Message In A Bottle' is a live worship album released through The Message Trust who for decades now have been a pivotal organization for evangelism and mission in Manchester schools and beyond. Recorded at a gathering in 2015, 'The Message In A Bottle' features vocals from Jamie Hill, Jonathan Ogden, Christina Otoo-Anakwa and Al Metcalfe, as well as spoken word tracks from Nick Shalavi, Emily Lawson and Andy Hawthorne. The Message exists to take the Gospel to young people in the hardest to reach areas of the country, but as a result, the album isn't completely sure who its target audience is. This is what an album sounds like when it is uncertain whether it wants to be an innovative album that connects with inner-city youths or a worship album to appeal to the UK church going population. The worship tracks aren't bad - it's just we have heard, in recent years, amazing aggregations like Bethel Music, Jesus Culture and Hillsong so our expectations of live worship recordings have gone up greatly. The edgier spoken word tracks seem to be inserted to appeal to younger people but fall flat. Unfortunately, "The Message Is Jesus" featuring The Message Trust founder and chief executive Andy Hawthorne suffers from this identity crisis. The rousing and passionate words from Hawthorne are ruined by an out of place string section, which completely destroys the atmosphere. These strings are at a contrast to what Hawthorne is saying and quite frankly sound like they were added in post-production. Thankfully there are worship songs elsewhere which in part redeem the album, in particular the tracks where Jonathan Ogden (of Rivers & Robots) takes an excellent lead.
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The first live worship album recorded at The Message. Worship leaders and musicians gathered in Manchester in September 2015, together with a packed crowd, for a meaningful and inspiring worship event.
The CD is split into 3 movements – A Call To Worship / A Call To Live Deep / A Call To Go and each movement features 4 songs preceded by a spoken word. One of the spoken contributors is Andy Hawthorne, founder of The Message Trust and awarded an OBE for services to young people.
- Intro (Spoken Word)
- I Hear The Drums
- Our Light Has Gone
- How Can I Not Go? (Spoken Word)
- Not Giving Up
- Kingdom Song
- So Much More
- The Message Is Jesus (Spoken Word)
- Jesus, The One Who Saves
- How Sweet The Sound
- You Place Your Hand Over Me
- To The Highest Place