Gateway Worship's God Be Praised - CD Review & Giveaway
Gateway Worship has finally released its third live worship album, and it was well worth the wait! With such great songs as “Revelation Song”, “The Lord Reigns”, “You Are Good”, “Save Me” and “You, You Are God”, and wonderful worship leaders such as Thomas Miller and best-selling Kari Jobe, coming from their previous worship albums, I was really looking forward to what this project had in store. This team of musicians is from Gateway Church near Dallas, Texas.
“God Be Praised” features 15 new high energy songs of praise and intimate moments of worship. The album opens with the energetic duo of “God is With Us Now” and “Praise Him”, followed by a song that really is at the heart of the theme of this album, called “Victory”. This song declares “Satan has no power/there’s freedom in the blood of Jesus/ there’s victory in the cross/I’m breaking free/all my chains are gone”. That’s really the overarching theme of this album, says Associate Pastor and Worship Leader Thomas Miller. “I am praying that the music from this album will be songs for people and churches everywhere to declare the absolute, complete, overwhelming victory that we all have in Jesus,” says Miller.
The album takes a more intimate turn with “Stay Amazed”, which is a powerful worship song, perfect for worship team, choir and soloist – “Oh holy God, I pour out my praise/on the One who never ceases to amaze.” A familiar hymn takes on a new chorus in “Oh For a Thousand (Hallelujah)”. Kari Jobe then makes her first solo appearance on this album with the powerful song “O the Blood”. This song is going to the top of my list for songs to do as we approach communion or a cross-focused service (“what a sacrifice, that saved my life/yes, the blood/ it is my victory”). “One Single Drop”, written by Walker Beach, starts with a nice acoustic guitar/vocal combo that almost has a very nice acoustic vibe to it, which then develops into a beautiful duet with a full string section. You can hear Walker tell the story behind this song here.
Another highlight was Kari Jobe’s “You Are For Me”. Kari made this song popular on her solo debut album, but I was so glad to see that this great song was included on this project. In this context of a live worship album with the theme of victory in Christ, this song gives worshippers a chance to sing with full assurance that “I know that You are for me!” The closing song, and title song, “God Be Praised” is a great way to end the album! This is a song that starts quietly, but builds into a driving, strong statement of praise that lifts your voice and heart to heaven.
Overall, I would say this album has a lot of very usable songs for congregations of any size. Even though on the recording you hear a choir of hundreds and a full team of musicians, these songs are rich in lyrics, and accessible enough that a team of any size can use them to lead their congregation to the throne. I’d highly recommend it! You can watch some of the songwriters and worship leaders give you their thoughts by watching this video below. You can also listen to/download the album on iTunes (releases November 9th).
(Review by Barry Westman)
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