The Flame of Glory and Wonder
Posted September 28, 2016
By PhillFeltham_NRT, Staff Reviewer
Best-seller Erwin McManus (author of The Artisan Soul) founded Mosaic MSC, a worship band based out of his Mosaic Church in Los Angeles, in an attempt to create music that is "like kerosene igniting a fire in the hearts of millions across the world." Mosaic MSC recorded their second album, Glory & Wonder, at their home church in the heart of Hollywood in an attempt to accomplish this goal.
The album opener "Across the Universe" sets the pace by establishing the sound and voice of the Mosaic church. The appropriate opener serves as the worship band's theme song, describing how God's love and power is limitless. There is a smooth transition between "Across the Universe" and the album's second song, "Heartbeats."
"Heartbeats" is an upbeat hand-clapping love song that praises the Master of the Universe with a catchy hook: "I wanna know your heart, heart / Show me Your heart." The album's tempo slows with "Speak to Us," a worshipful anthem that speaks to God in reverence: "You are the voice that brings us hope / Speak to us."
The angelic voice and piano in "How Beautiful" flawlessly creates an atmosphere of overwhelming intimacy between singer and Savior. Despite the length and chorus repetition, the song's intimacy lasts until the very end. "Now and Forever" has a catchy hook, however, the verses drag and the sound is predictable--similar to songs on other live worship albums.
Like "Heartbeats," "Not Afraid" is a finger-snapping duet with a clever arrangement that gives the listener an opportunity to praise God while busting a groove. The sound unfortunately lacks diversity and spontaneity--the band uses the same arrangement of instruments in "Not Afraid," as well as other songs on the album.
Glory & Wonder's title track, also the album closer, creates closeness between listener and savior--the completely vulnerable listener can freely worship God in reverence. The singer interrupts this closeness with some unnecessary dialogue, but the right time the worship leader rallies the audience to sing along as the song reaches its climax. The studio version of "Glory and Wonder" is clean and polished and well worth the $1.29 on iTunes.
The Bottom Line: Mosaic MSC gave a solid effort on Glory & Wonder. Without a doubt, the band can easily establish a sound--fast-paced songs and beautiful, sincere ballads--that entices the listener to worship God in a safe place. I would have liked to see the band use a more diverse set of sounds. Similar to other worship bands, Mosaic MSC falls into the trap of creating predictable songs with cliché lyrics, chorus repetition and unnecessary dialogue. If Mosaic MSC can avoid these common traps, their subsequent efforts will be great.
Song to Download Now:
"Glory and Wonder" (Get it on iTunes here.)
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