Album review: Live From New York – Jesus Culture with Martin Smith
“Live From New York” by Jesus Culture with Martin Smith is by far one of the most anticipated recordings of the year, and according to some it is the worship album of the decade.
Jesus Culture to worshipers like myself is more than a Christian band; it’s more than music but instead a movement…a movement to make Jesus more famous. Jesus Culture’s front man and woman Chris Quilala and Kim Walker-Smith are a musical match made in heaven, and together they have made this movement everything it is up to this day. Jesus Culture is a movement with sets of songs that will be here even after we leave this earth, sets of songs that ultimately bring glory to God, sets of song cries that draw people closer to the Creator.
“Live From New York” would have been great with just Jesus Culture but with Martin Smith it is beyond incredible.
Martin Smith the former lead singer from the Christian group Delirious?. Delirious? is one of my all-time favorite Christian bands. They have spawned ranges of hit songs that are being re-sang, remixed, re-recorded every day. Delirious? is credited for some of the church anthems today like “I Could Sing Of Your Love Forever,” “Rain Down,” “Lord You Have My Heart,” and “Did You Feel The Mountains Tremble?“.
Martin Smith joined forces on stage with Jesus Culture on June 28 – 30, 2012 at Nassau Veteran’s Coliseum in New York to record the album. Only the Lord knows how much I would have loved to be a part of the recording which took place during the Hope Is Alive conference, fellow-shipping with thousands of newly saved Christians and the old ones. After one of the songs Martin asked the crowd to scream in praise to God and the energy felt at that point is incredible so one can only imagine how it was live.
“Live From New York” is a double CD 16 songs in total. Track by track the album goes smooth- uplifting and magnifying the glory of God at the same time shinning light to how much we are really nothing with God, who is our all.
Martin Smith ignites the CD and atmosphere with “Fire Never Sleeps” proclaiming that God’s fire never sleeps at the same time petitioning that God allows us to tap into that fire.
Chris Quilala takes over to rock with the crowd in “Forevermore.” The guitar, rhythm, drums and vibes certainly rock.
Kim Walker performs “Pursuit” one of the wonderful sounds of Daniel Bashta. Martin eventually joins making the song an incredible duet as they sing and encourage us to seek God’s presence.
Kim continues to seek and hanker for God’s presence in “Walk With Me.” Initially I felt she was singing “rock with me” instead of “walk with me.” How hip would that be? Right?. “Walk With Me” is a passionate cry for God’s presence in our lives and circumstances. Kim sings from the depth of her heart in this melodic tune filled with pronounced guitar moments.
“Waiting Here For You” is one of my favorite worship songs of the year (Christy Nockels‘ version); however. we get to hear Martin and Jesus Culture croon the song. The audience was really interactive in singing in unison, what blew me away was the Spanish rendition of the chorus at the end. I went into a frenzy so did the audience indicated by the screams heard. Beautiful moment.
“Our God Reigns” is originally from Delirious? It is one of those constant song on my iPod that doesn’t get removed while my routine syncing. Martin and Jesus Culture adore God on top of their lungs in this Delirious? classic.
The second CD of “Live From New York” starts with the pop/soft rock “I’m In Love With You,” an impeccable display of a skilled instrumentalist, not forgetting the bold vocals of Chris Quilala.
Jesus Culture reminds us of how spectacular they are as both songwriters and singers in “How, I love You“. Chris Quilala shines as he sings about love – how much he loves God. This kind of love and passion for Christ should be communicated. Guitar riffs so intense, drums so tender & bold, piano so subtle one can easily get lost in worship to the King of kings. Definitely one of the best on the Live From New York.
“Holy Spirit” had chills run down my spine, who is to say it wasn’t the Holy Spirit in action?
“Holy Spirit” is written by the band and Kim did a fantastic job singing it. Her voice will send chills down one’s spine. The effect of the song is intense, the song can simply be describes as “8 minutes of greatness”. Holy Spirit is among some of the highlights of Live From New York. Martin is joined by Kim in some of the other Delirious? signature tunes “God Is Coming,” “Show Me Your Glory,” “Majesty,” “Do You Feel The Mountains Tremble?“.