The Worship EP, Ben Woodward - Album Review
Ben Woodward’s newest offering, The Worship EP is a wonderful 6 song worship set. Ben was on staff at the International House of Prayer in Kansas City but recently took a position with Rock of Roseville Church in Roseville, CA. This is his third offering, and a solid follow up to his 2010 album Maranatha.
The opening track, ‘Running Into Your Name’ is a great song about taking refuge in The Lord. As with most of this album, this song relies on a stripped down feel that makes it perfect for most churches to add into their Sunday morning lineup. The chorus really tugs at the heart of this song: “I keep running into Your name, You are my hiding place. I keep running into Your name, You are my safe refuge. Let the mountains and the valleys all resound with one song; Jesus Saves.” One of the things that makes this EP special is that even though it was recorded in the studio, it was recorded as a worship set, and so the songs run into each other. This makes it easier to listen and get lost in the place of worship.
‘I Love You So’, is a great song that begins with soft piano and Ben’s soothing voice crying out to the Lord. The verse builds this atmosphere of love. It is truly an offering to the Lord more than it is a song for us to sing. The chorus is amazingly simple: “I Love You so, I want to sing till the whole world knows”. The song feels bigger as Ben introduces cello into the chorus, which makes it more majestic without making it busier.
Ben gives us something more akin to modern worship with ‘Great is Your Mercy’, with electronic drums and an electric guitar riff that relies on delay, reverb and tremolo. However this song has a slowed down tempo and a very passionate feel. This song about mercy really hits deep into your heart as you listen. It has one verse, a chorus, and a simple tag. It doesn’t try to be eloquent, or fancy, it just rejoices in the mercy God has extended on fallen men.
This is followed up with an instrumental track he calls ‘Selah’. I think this is a perfect name for it, because its comes at the end of the last song when there are no words left to say and simply uses the instruments to express the emotions that are overflowing from the heart. It’s a brilliant moment of genuine worship.
This is a solid EP that should be in the hands of every worship leader. With 6 songs it sits about the perfect length for an average church worship service. I could see this exact EP being someone’s Sunday morning worship. I applaud Ben for another great offering - 4 Stars, and that missing star is because this EP left me wanting more. I ended the EP thinking, I wish it wasn’t over. Which is a great feeling. Buy this EP on Ben’s BandCamp page.
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