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Atlanta, GA
Married to the best woman on the planet. Father of three lovely daughters. Worship leader, song writer and marriage blogger by calling. Passionate about exalting the name of Jesus through worship and strong marriages. Electrical Engineer by education and experience, currently a global product manager.
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    1 year ago

Saturday, January 15, 2011

PostHeaderIcon "Found" by United Pursuit Band

So, yeah, I’m back. Here’s why: We had snow here in Atlanta this week.

Did you make the connection? Let me explain.

Unprecedented snow and ice around here this week had me home from work four out of five days this week. In between dealing remotely with various work-related disasters, I decided it was time to spend the Itunes gift cards I received for Christmas. But on what?

I used to think of myself as slightly ahead of the curve when it came to new music, especially new worship music. I spent hours every week perusing the web, listening to new music, reading reviews, looking at webisodes and learning new songs.

Then I just got burned out on it all.

So much of what I was hearing sounded like regurgitation of countless songs that had come before. The worship music explosion, which I had heralded as an awesome trend ten years ago, suddenly seemed to become industrial. Copy the last "hot" project and put it out. Again and again. There was so little in the way of fresh sounds that I became discouraged.

I turned my attention wholeheartedly to marriage. Specifically to writing a book, a small group curriculum and a blog on marriage. That endeavor became pretty all-consuming for me. So I more or less left new worship music behind. Except for a few projects from my favorite artists, which truthfully I bought more out of support for the artists than for the music itself, I stopped buying music altogether.

So, back to my Itunes endeavor. Via Twitter, I saw a new project had been released by one of the few bands that I felt wasn’t falling into the status quo, United Pursuit. I also noticed that 100% of the sales (not profit) from “Found” was going to support Heidi Baker’s orphan ministry, Iris Ministries. Good cause to boot. I decided to give it a try and bought it on Itunes.


Here’s a tiny teaser.

These guys have really expanded their soundscape with this project. I fell in love with it from the very first track. And it just kept getting better as I listened.

The band’s MySpace artist page explains, “United Pursuit defies today’s worship genre norms, always reaching for more.” Bingo. This project had exactly what I felt had been missing from so much of the new worship music in the past few years. It is a fresh sound, a different approach, yet it isn’t a new sound for the sake of the sound. It is totally worshipful and engaging.

Now if you are looking for a bunch of huge praise anthems to rock the house on Sunday morning this project will disappoint. Chris Tomlin this is NOT (nothing against Chris, mind you). Each track unwinds slowly, with tons of gorgeous pads punctuated by echo-laden electric guitar arpeggios. The lyrics are scant but so rich that every phrase grabs your heart. Then they leave lots of musical space for them to sink in. Very effective for a true worship experience.

A good example is the song “Call me,” one of my favorite tracks. (This is the song in the YouTube clip) In the first two minutes of the song, the only lyric is “Call me, call me out of where I been. Call me out of where I been,” sung twice. Then you are left to reflect on what that means. Not until two minutes in is another line added, ‘Take me, take me near to your heart. Take me near to your heart,” and then adds “Wake me to the river that flows, flows down from your throne. Flows down from your throne.” That’s it. Simple. Magnificent. Engaging. Worship.

So I tweeted my reaction to this project, "Get it now!"  Lisa, my daughter tweeted back, “You need to get their new live album too.” So I did.

Wow again.

Put that’s another post.


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On Earth As in Heaven

Worship and Prayer are two sides of the same coin.

"The four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints."
(Revelation 5:8 )

The Harp represents the songs of worship that go on in heaven around the throne of God; day and night it never stops.

The Bowls are full of the prayers of the saints, rising as incense before the throne of God.

It is the harp and the bowl together that give us a picture of the ongoing encounter with God that goes on in heaven.

Let it be on earth as it is in heaven.