Posted October 14, 2015
By MikaylaShriver_NRT, Staff Reviewer
Austin Stone Worship's website says "Worship is communal. Worship is collective. Worship is eternal. We exist to exalt the name of Jesus Christ here and now, always and forever." Truer words could not be spoken to describe this group of Austin, TX natives. The group is a worship collective based out of Austin Stone Community Church. Their latest release, This Glorious Grace, is a live worship album which perfectly reflects the heart of the church's worship ministry.
The group hits the ground running in this album with the opening song "Center My Life." The song is an upbeat cry to God, asking that He turn our eyes from the things of this world and teach our hearts to follow Him. The following track, titled "Trust," continues with a similar theme: trust in Jesus for all circumstances.
The third song on the album, "You Never Change," is a powerful change in pace for the album as the atmosphere shifts from excitement to passionate worship. This song is a declaration of the unchanging goodness of God: "You are my life, may You be lifted high / There is no other like Jesus Christ / You are my story, You're my everything / You are my glory, my God, and my King / You are my Rock, and You never change." The slowed-down style and consideration of God's goodness carries over into "You Are God And You Are Good." The song that follows, "Jesus True and Only," begins with a reminder of what Jesus suffered to rescue us from destruction, and is a shout of worship to Jesus for who He is.
"This Glorious Grace" is perfect as the title track of the album. It is easy to follow along with, but strong as a worship song praising God for His grace: "God, pour out Your grace, glorious grace / That I would be held by Your perfect embrace / I am undeserving, You are high and worthy / All of my praise for this glorious grace." In the following song, "Gracious Redeemer," we are met with a story all can relate to-- being lost in sin, only to be rescued by a Redeemer who made a way for our freedom and will return soon.
The final four songs on the album are Austin Stone Worship's masterful renditions of well-known worship songs. "How Deep The Father's Love For Us" is atmospheric in sound, and the slightly heightened tempo makes for a memorable version of this favorite. "Everything And Nothing Less" is an offering of one's entire self to God. The group's version of "Cornerstone" is familiar yet unique, and also a favorite in worship. The final song on the album, "It Is Well," closes out with the authoritative declaration from the well-known hymn: "And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight / The clouds be rolled back as a scroll / The drums shall resound, and the Lord shall descend / Even so, it is well with my soul."
The transition from leading worship in a home church as the worship ministry to being known as a worship group can be daunting, and Austin Stone Worship is crossing that bridge well. This Glorious Grace is a fantastic live worship album, and this is definitely not the last anyone will hear of Austin Stone Worship.
Song to Download Now:
"You Never Change" (Get it on iTunes here.)
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