Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Hillsong LIVE - Cornerstone: A CD Review

About Cornerstone:

Cornerstone was recorded in Sydney, Australia last fall with tens of thousands in worship at filled-to-capacity Allphones Arena. It captures the heart and sound of Hillsong Church globally representing the coming together of the Hillsong worship teams from around the world including Reuben Morgan, Joel Houston and many more. This album offers fresh, new songs to congregations worldwide with a simple desire to place emphasis on Jesus and a prayer that people everywhere will be encouraged to find hope in Christ, the Cornerstone.

This new resource is filled iwth songs such as the title track, a new anthem "Beneath The Waters (I Will Rise), and upbeat praise song, "Running" as well as the debut radio single, "Hope of the World". Cornerstone showcases 12 brand new songs written by Reuben Morgan, Joel Houston and a great team of writers. It will be available for sale as a CD, DVD, and a Physical Deluxe version that contains both the CD and DVD in one special package.

The inspiration behind the title track "Cornerstone" was birthed out of an international tragedy last summer in Norway when more than 70 innocent victims, many children, were killed. Hillsong's worship leader Reuben Morgan shares his response to this frightening shooting as he was visiting the Scandinavian Peninsula.

"When you write songs that people sing as part of their worship to God there is a bit of your soul that shares the aches of those around you. When there is tragedy, the song of lament wakes up with you, and when there is joy, the sound of praise fills your ears. To some it might seem really odd to reach for a guitar when tears are falling on scuffed up shoes, but I really don't know any other way of being". While the title track may have been inspired at that moment, Morgan says the message is even bigger, posing a question for every citizen of the world to answer: Who or what do we turn towards for our strength? This album, like all of Hillsong's projects, is more than a group of songs, it is a profound message that builds faith, stirs the soul and asks and answers the big questions.

"We only just have the time to forget the face of the gunman when another chorus of sirens wail," explains Morgan. "We have barely cleaned up after the flood when an earthquake strikes. When the earth shakes, we look to our feet and wonder what it is that we are standing on. Christ is the cornerstone - it is Him that is the anchor."

Hillsong LIVE will be coming back to the U.S. to tour Cornerstone beginning in September. The Hillsong LIVE Cornerstone Tour will begin September 12th in Boston, MA. Tickets go on sale for the 12-city tour on July 20th. For more information visit http://www.premierproductions.com

9/12 Boston, MA Agganis Arena
9/13 Baltimore, MD 1st Mariner Arena
9/14 Cincinnati, OH Bank of Kentucky Center
9/15 Charlotte, NC Bojangles' Coliseum
9/17 Memphis TN Bellevue Baptist Church
9/18 Birmingham, AL Boutwell Municipal Auditorium
9/20 Austin, TX Cedar Park Center
9/21 San Antonio, TX Freeman Coliseum
9/22 Tulsa, OK BOK Center
9/23 Wichita, KS Intrust Bank Arena
9/24 Kansas City, MO Independence Events Center
9/25 Denver, CO Wells Fargo Theatre

About Hillsong LIVE:

Hillsong LIVE is the congregational expression of worship from Hillsong Church - a local church with global influence. Their music captures the heart and sound of Hillsong Church globally and represents the coming together of the Hillsong worship team from around the world; including Reuben Morgan, Joel Houston and many more. Since 1992, Hillsong LIVE has resourced the local church and received gold and platinum album status multiple times, writing such well known worship songs as "Shout To The Lord", "Inside Out", "Hosanna", "The Stand" and "Mighty To Save", which was awarded the 2009 Dove for Worship Song of the Year. The Hillsong brands have sold more than 11 million albums.

You can connect with Hillsong LIVE on Facebook, Twitter and on their official website.

My Review:

Hillsong has been a favorite of mine for many years now, and I own several of their CD's. Recently, thanks to Merge PR, I had the chance to review the most recent release from Hillsong Live, Cornerstone! 

Just before receiving the offer, my sister passed away, and the title track, Cornerstone was played at her celebration of life service. Hearing that song, depsite the saddness of the situation, has given me so much renewed hope in my Lord and Savior. About a week after I came home from visiting family I received the Cornerstone CD in the mail. I listened first to the title track, but seriously the entire CD is so incredible. 

It is classic Hillsong in its sound, but this time, the lyrics has really impacted me. And hearing about the background to the CD, as a response to the tragedy in Norway, was even more impacting. Whatever life brings us, good or bad, God is with us and is our Rock and Cornerstone through it all. This is by far one of my favorite CDs from Hillsong to date, and probably the best work of Hillsong in recent years. 

All the songs have blessed me, but especially, Cornerstone, Running, Beneath The Waters, Stand In Awe and Hope of the World. The songs switch from upbeat, to calmer in a nice mix and I know that many of these songs will be sung in congregations all around the world. If you have been a Hillsong fan for a long time, this is a refreshing new sound, and if you haven't really listened to Hillsong, you will become a fan after listening to Cornerstone. 

I highly recommend this CD and give it a huge thumbs up.

BUY IT: You can purchase Cornerstone from Hillsong LIVE at your favorite Christian music retailer.

***I received a complimentary copy of the above CD, courtesy of Merge PR, for the purpose of review on this blog. All opinions expressed are my own, and I have not been compensated in any other manner***

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