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MUSIC REVIEWS and NEWS

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Christ Our Hope in Life and Death – Keith and Kristyn Getty
****

Keith and Kristyn Getty follow-up their 2021 album Confessio – Irish American Roots with Christ Our Hope in Life and Death, their first major collection of new hymns since 2016’s Facing A Task Unfinished. The new album, one of my favorites of 2022, features guest artists such as Michael W. Smith, Skye Peterson, Matt Boswell and Matt Papa, and Rend Collective.
Below are a few comments about each of the songs:
Christ Our Hope in Life and Death (Radio Mix) – This song was written by Keith Getty, Matt Boswell, Jordan Kauflin, Matt Merker and Matt Papa. It was produced by Bryan Fowler and features Michael W. Smith on vocals. Inspired by the first question of the Heidelberg Catechism, this is one of our best modern hymns. The song features backing vocals, drums, bass, piano, guitar, and strings.
Key lyrics:
O sing hallelujah!
Our hope springs eternal;
O sing hallelujah!
Now and ever we confess
Christ our hope in life and death 

Click on ‘Continue reading’ for:

  • More of this review and reviews of Together for the Gospel Live V – Matt Merker and New Creation (Deluxe Version) – Mac Powell
  • Music News
  • Song of the Week Lyrics ~In the Valley by CityAlight, featuring Sandra McCracken

Rejoice – This joyful song was written by Keith Getty, Kristyn Getty, Ben Shive, Skye Peterson and Bryan Fowler. It was produced by Shive and Fowler and features Rend Collective on vocals. The song was written out of a desire to answer the question, “How do we find opening songs that are energetic, full of joy, but rich in the Bible?” The song puts Paul’s encouragement in Philippians 4:4 into song: “Rejoice in the Lord now and always, sing it again we rejoice.” The song features drums, backing vocals, guitar, bass, and guitar.
Key lyrics:
With each breath He’s given, praise the Lord
In these times we live in, we will praise the Lord
Throughout every season, I am sure
We have every reason to praise the Lord 

The Lord Almighty Reigns – This song was written by Keith Getty, Kristyn Getty, Matt Boswell and Matt Papa. It was produced by Ben Shive and Bryan Fowler. The song features piano, bass, drums, guitar and backing vocals.
Key lyrics:
Certain of that day
Christ we will proclaim
Oh, that more would share the prize
Salvation in His name

Take Shelter – This song was written by Skye Peterson, Kristyn Getty and Ben Shive and produced by Shive. The song features Skye Peterson on vocals, piano, keys, guitar, bass, and backing vocals.
Key lyrics:
And I’ll take shelter
Take shelter
In the loving arms of God 

On Jordan’s Stormy Banks – This hymn was written by 18th century London pastor Samuel Stennett and Christopher Miner, and produced by Ben Shive. The song features guitar, drums, bass, backing vocals, and a nice guitar solo.
Key lyrics:
When shall I reach that happy place
And be forever blessed?
When shall I see my Father’s face
And in His bosom rest?

Beautiful and Greatly Loved – This lullaby was written by Kristyn Getty and Jordyn Shellhart and introduced at the 2022 Sing! Conference. The song was produced by Ben Shive, and features guitar, strings, piano, drums, organ, bass, and backing vocals.
Key lyrics:
You are beautiful and greatly loved
Though the flower may fade
Your worth will never age
The breath of heaven from above
Flows through the both of us
Singing over us
You are greatly loved 

Press On – This song was written by Kristyn Getty and Ben Shive and produced by Shive. The song features piano, drums, bass, organ, vocals by the Getty Girls, and a nice organ solo.
Key lyrics:
Press on all you saints
Press on till the end
Christ with us, ever with us
Until He comes again 

Christ is All in All – This gospel flavored song, which debuted at the 2021 Sing! Conference, and was included on the live conference album, was written by Kristyn Getty, Ben Shive and Dwan Hill and produced by Shive. The song features guitar, organ, drums, backing vocals, bass and a nice organ solo.
Key lyrics:
Sons and daughters of the King
Rise up and sing
That Christ is all in all

Christ The True and Better – This song was written by Keith Getty, Matt Boswell and Matt Papa. It was produced by Ben Shive. The song initially appeared on Almost Home: The Hymns of Matt Boswell and Matt Papa Vol. 2, and is one that we have recently been singing in our church. The song features guitar, piano, bass, strings, backing vocals and some excellent drums.
Key lyrics:
He who makes the many righteous
Brings us back to life again
Dying, He reversed the curse, then
Rising, crushed the serpent’s head

If It Had Not Been for the Lord – This song was written by Kristyn Getty, Matt Boswell and Matt Papa, and produced by Ben Shive. The song features piano, bass, guitar, drums, and vocals from Matt Boswell and Matt Papa.
Key lyrics:
Our hope our help from age to age the same
Our God our rock most worthy to be praised
From this mount of grace our grateful hearts will say evermore

If it had not been for the Lord

Christ Our Hope in Life and Death – This is an alternate version of the title track, produced by Keith Getty, Kristyn Getty and Nathan Nockels.

Favorite Songs
Christ Our Hope in Life and Death (Radio Mix)
Rejoice
The Lord Almighty Reigns
On Jordan’s Stormy Banks
Christ is All in All
Christ the True and Better
If It Had Not Been for the Lord


Together for the Gospel Live V – Matt Merker
****

This album features 19 classic and modern hymns sung at the final Together for the Gospel Conference at the Kentucky International Convention Center in Louisville in April, 2022. The hymns are led by modern hymn writer Matt Merker. It is a wonderful worship experience listening to Merker, on piano, lead ten thousand voices. The songs range from newer hymns such as “Christ Our Hope in Life and Death”, “Yet Not I But Christ in Me”, and “His Mercy is More” to older hymns such as “The King of Love (Psalm 23)”, “Crown Him With Many Crowns”, and “Rejoice the Lord is King”.


New Creation (Deluxe Version) – Mac Powell
****

Mac Powell (former lead singer of Third Day) has long been a favorite of mine. His 2021 album was one of my favorites last year. Here is my review of the album. Powell has now released a Deluxe Version of the album, which features two new songs and live versions of “Be Praised”, “River of Life”, “Love is the Reason” and “New Creation”, which were previously available on an EP.
Here is information on the two new songs:

You Are – This upbeat worship song was written by Hank Bentley, Jeff Pardo and Powell. The song features acoustic and electric guitar, drums, bass and hand claps, and backing vocals.
Key lyrics:
You are the way that I wanna be going
You are the truth I wanna know
You are the life that I wanna be living
Everywhere that I go
Jesus, You’re the answer

Savior and Friend – This song about the love of Jesus was written by Ethan Hulse, Jonathan Smith and Powell. The song features acoustic guitar, piano, backing vocals and drums.
Key lyrics:
Oh, how sweet it is
To be given a love without end
Just to know and live in your goodness
Jesus my savior and friend 


  • Son of Suffering. Watch the video for Matt Redman’s new song “Son of Suffering”.
  • Crowder Christmas Album. Crowder will release Milk & Cookies: A Merry Crowder Christmas on October 21. Listen to the first song released from the album “I’ve Heard About You” here.

In the Valley by CityAlight, featuring Sandra McCracken

This week’s song of the week is “In the Valley” by CityAlight, featuring Sandra McCracken. The song was inspired by Tim Challies’ new book Seasons of Sorrow, and was written by Challies, Jonny Robinson and Rich Thompson. The song was debuted at the recent Sing! Getty Worship Conference in Nashville. Listen to the song here.

Verse 1
When the path that I feared
Is the way He has set
And I long to give in and retreat
Still to Jesus I hold
As I face every step
For the Lord he will give me His peace

Chorus 1
Bless the Lord, He will give me His peace
Bless the Lord, He will give me His peace
And if I should remain in the valley today
Bless the Lord, He will give me His peace

Verse 2
When the road that I tread
Fills my heart with despair
And it seems like my grief has no end
Still to Jesus I hold
Who will walk with me there
And the Lord he will give me His strength

Chorus 2
Bless the Lord, He will give me His strength
Bless the Lord, He will give me His strength
And if I should remain in the valley today
Bless the Lord, He will give me His strength

Verse 3
On the road that You walked
With the weight of the cross
All my pain and my sorrow You held
So to You I shall hold
You redeem every loss
For my Lord You have given Yourself

Chorus 3
Bless the Lord, for He gives me Himself
Bless the Lord, for He gives me Himself
And if I should remain in the valley today
Bless the Lord, for He gives me Himself 

Author: Bill Pence

I’m Bill Pence – married to my best friend Tammy, a graduate of Covenant Seminary, St. Louis Cardinals fan, formerly a manager at a Fortune 50 organization, and in leadership at my local church. I am a life-long learner and have a passion to help people develop, and to use their strengths to their fullest potential. I am an INTJ on Myers-Briggs, 3 on the Enneagram, my top five Strengthsfinder themes are: Belief, Responsibility, Learner, Harmony, and Achiever, and my two StandOut strength roles are Creator and Equalizer. My favorite book is the Bible, with Romans my favorite book of the Bible, and Colossians 3:23 and 2 Corinthians 5:21 being my favorite verses. Some of my other favorite books are The Holiness of God and Chosen by God by R.C. Sproul, and Don’t Waste Your Life by John Piper. I enjoy music in a variety of genres, including modern hymns, Christian hip-hop and classic rock. My book Called to Lead: Living and Leading for Jesus in the Workplace and Tammy’s book Study, Savor and Share Scripture: Becoming What We Behold are available in paperback and Kindle editions on Amazon. amazon.com/author/billpence amazon.com/author/tammypence

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