One of the most influential global ministry communities to emerge in recent years hails from Australia. Founded in 1983 in Sydney, Australia, Hillsong Church has been impacting culture with powerful worship albums and songs for many years. Today, more than 30,000 people attend worship services in Sydney, and there are Hillsong campuses in 15 different world areas.
Such a tremendous collective of ministry centers has birthed yet another incredible worship album called OPEN HEAVEN/River Wild. Hillsong Pastor, Brian Houston, eloquently and concisely captures the heart of this new release in this way:
“Since the day we planted Hillsong Church, writing and singing songs that powerfully declare the truth of the Gospel and praise of our magnificent God has been a mantelpiece and mandate on this House. What God has done, raising up songwriters – men and women who seek after God personally and share their creative conversations corporately – has left me continuously grateful for the opportunity that we have to bless other local churches with music that resounds His fame.
This album, OPEN HEAVEN/River Wild is no different, and in fact, is ushering in a new sound that only the Holy Spirit himself could orchestrate. It is filled with music and lyrics that will take your personal moments of devotion and corporate adoration to new heights as you declare that indeed his unfailing hope, grace, kindness, and furious love will finish the good works He began in you.
As we set out to record this album at our annual Hillsong Conference, the Spirit of God moved powerfully in a way none of us could have expected, planned for, or tried to contain within an album of songs. What we captured was indeed distinctive – a new sound rising in the House of God. The Holy Spirit is our distinctive, His voice needs to be loudest in our lives– and the personal revelations from Him in our worship times are what will set us apart and draw a world in need to a waiting King.”*
As has been a part of the Hillsong legacy to date, there are some BIG songs on this album! There are 16 songs and some great teaching from Brian Houston on the project, making this a uniquely invaluable album to own. In particular, I am blown away by O Praise the Name, Open Heaven (River Wild), What A Saviour, and This Is Living.
Fans of Hillsong will be as captivated as ever by the definitive sound of this live album. Lush keyboards, booming drums, ornate and driving guitars, passionate lead vocals, and the compelling landscape of several thousand voices in the conference crowd… all of this and more provides for a heartfelt album that worshippers and worship leaders around the world will draw from for years to come!
* Quote is from a Hillsong blog titled Open Heaven originally published by Brian Houston on Oct. 2,, 2015.
Craig Adams, a recipient of multiple Dove Awards, has produced and/or participated in more than 3,500 recordings for artists, record labels, music publishers, tv/film, and radio over the past 35 years. In addition, his vast experience in music production, local church worship ministry, and musical direction for live events, along with his work at LifeWay Worship, gives him the talent, experience, and credibility to not only listen, but really hear, what each album delivers to the listeners.