NEW WINE WORSHIP : Simple Pursuit. (Integrity : B01M5FMK4W)
Like previous recordings, this live album from New Wine 2016 has a heart firmly rooted in a love of worship, Simple Pursuit refocuses on what everything is, and always has been, about. That worship infused with a deep love of God comes into a new life, and it’s this reinvigoration that has led to this year’s release being both the most energetic and most reflective. Sam Bailey leads a lot of the worship, and you can hear those gathered joining in, either clapping of singing along. Chris Sayburn’s “The Lion and the Lamb” is a really potent song, and I liked it very much. The title track is a reflective number that centres on the wonder of an awesome God, while three short pieces entitled “Interlude” seem to be rather out of place within the track listing. I thought that “Pocketful of Faith” started quite well but, once the tempo increased, it sounded very much like plenty of other contemporary worship songs, and I was left disappointed. However, Tim Hughes’ “Hope and Glory” is the stand out song of the album. It’s marvellously anthemic, as he sings “Christ, Alone in you we stand.” That leads to “Love Song”, were Tom Eccleshall takes over lead vocals. Delivery is excellent and the song raises voices in worship of our God. Towards the end, we have a rocky “Sing It Out”, before quieter songs brings those gathered back to gently focus on their worship. It’s a bit of a mixed bag really. Hearing many of the songs for the first time, not many immediately caught my imagination. Maybe a few more plays will help. 6/10.