The new album from Northern Irish band Bluetree has been a long time coming for those who have been fans from the start. And there are still a couple of months to wait til you can get a copy (releases on May 8th). But I have had a listen to it and the good news is it is worth the wait!
A lot has changed since they launched the first album, which gradually became a huge hit in the USA, and there have been significant changes to the line-up of the band. Plus Rend Collective have emerged as a new name on the NI modern worship scene. However lead singer Aaron Boyd is still here, and the characteristic Bluetree blend of light-rock worship with some techno loops and beats is intact – this is more techno worship while Rend is more folk-rock.
The album is saturated in Biblical phrases, and is very unashamed in proclaiming Christ as our king in a bold way. The cross is central, God’s love is declared and it is clear that the heart of this album is to make much of His name, not to extend the fame of Bluetree.
Kingdom starts off with some fast-paced songs, Glorious Victorious and You Were You Are, and fans of God of this City will enjoy these songs. Later in the album things are more slow paced, reflective songs that while not as likely to get you jumping will still draw you in with profound lyrics.
One of the great things about Kingdom is that they succeed in producing worship songs that express a heart of love to God without them being “love songs to a boyfriend Jesus” as so many worship songs can be these days. Inevitably given how many worship albums get released these days the themes (exalting Christ, nothing can stop us if God is for us, God is our rock, Jesus is a healing Lord) are not new, but they are well expressed. And they are themes that are worth being reminded of regularly. And given how good the songs sound, you will want to listen to them often and get reminded.
Towards the end of the album the pace picks up again, and there is even a sneaky snippet of dubstep that finds its way in to the mix. The album ends with the song Under my feet, a song to get you jumping about how the devil is under our feet for he has been defeated, and it features some crowd chanting and pumping beats and wouldn’t sound out of place in a club (but for the fact that the lyrics are holy rather than about sex and drinking…).
Kingdom is an album full of deep, biblically solid lyrics. There are some great choruses that you will find yourself singing along with on the first listen. The Greater Things album had some standout tracks (God of this City anyone?) and some standard tracks – Kingdom may not have the standouts to rival Greater things, but as a whole it is an album of great tracks. The only downside? You will have to wait til May 8th to get a copy.
Standout Track: Shine – one of the slower songs, but a great reflective song about how our God is amazing
Full disclosure so I don’t get hauled into jail for breaking internet laws – I got a free promotional copy of the album. I was under no pressure to post a positive review. I will enjoy listening to it for the next 2 months while you can’t…