The heart of Hillsong UNITED is to create music that reveals the truth of who Jesus is. In studio and out of the studio, on tour or at home, Hillsong UNITED is committed to writing songs that speak truth, create a unique sound, connects with churches, individuals and ultimately connects people everywhere with God.
Fronted by worship leaders Taya Smith, Joel Houston, Jad Gillies, JD and Matt Crocker, the team is an evolving collaboration of pastors, worship leaders, musicians and songwriters -- all intentional about giving voice to a generation passionate about God. Everything UNITED does, whether it be from recording or writing songs, to playing them in front of people and all that goes with that, it’s an expression of a really extraordinary God doing what only He can do through really ordinary people who love Him, want to serve Him and to build His Church. To simply serve God and allow Him to do what only He can do has always been the team’s desire.
Hillsong United began as the youth ministry band of Sydney, Australia's Hillsong Church. Originally dubbed United Live, the group was first led by singers/songwriters Reuben Morgan and Marty Sampson. Their 1999 debut, Everyday, established their creative template: each album was recorded live at the annual October youth conference Encounterfest -- enabling contributions from a variety of church members, friends, and supporters, including the popular Christian folk chanteuse Brooke Fraser -- and released on CD and DVD early the following year. When Morgan left United Live in 2002 to mount a solo career, Joel Houston took his place, prompting the name change to Hillsong United.
In the years to follow, their popularity snowballed on both sides of the equator, with 2006's United We Stand emerging as the year's best-selling Christian LP at Canadian retail. All of the Above found similar success in 2007, as did 2009's a_CROSS//the_EARTH: Tear Down the Walls and its accompanying live album, Faith + Hope + Love. The CD/DVD set We're All in This Together showed up in 2011, with the double-disc Live in Miami: Welcome to the Aftermath arriving a year later.
In 2013, the group released Zion, their third studio album proper. It became their first Australian number one, and also hit the Top Five of the Billboard 200 in the U.S. Organic versions of the album's songs landed on the EP Zion Acoustic Sessions later that year, while 2014 saw the group offer something more dancefloor-oriented with The White Album: Remix Project. The year 2015 brought the full-length Empires, which returned them to the number one spot at home. The live LP Of Dirt and Grace: Live from the Land followed in 2016. The group later headed to Los Angeles to record their fifth studio record. Wonder was released in 2017, and featured worship leaders Joel Houston and Matt Crocker delivering a collection of uplifting and inspirational pop- and rock-infused tracks.
For their lastest album ‘PEOPLE’, UNITED have kept things simple; returning to where it all began. The record is truly all about the people we engage with everyday - those believers are called to reach with the Gospel and to whom we witness God’s unfailing love.
“The hope for the project is simply understanding the power of music as a means of bringing people together, and letting it serve as a reminder that in our culture––the call to love our neighbour is a revolutionary act that perhaps rings louder now than ever,” says Joel Houston. ”If there's one thing that music can do better than anything else on earth, is its innate ability to unify people. It’s the essence at the heart of what UNITED has always been about––and what we want this project to represent more than anything––bringing people together, from every different walk of life, with all our differing experiences, circumstances, and perspectives––and finding songs that give us reason to sing as individuals with a common voice.”
Heart for ministry| Posted September 30, 2016
Hillsong united are a great band who are committed to writing and recording songs for the church. Their songs are very relatable and are meant to bring your focus back to God. They are a great band with a great heart for ministry.
fan of 8 years!!| Posted February 10, 2014
It's been eight years since I started listening to Hillsong United, and they are still my favorite worship band. They have a lot of creative and deep songs, and their live performances are an incredible experience.