Will Reagan & United Pursuit - Live at the Banks House

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Artist: Will Reagan & United Pursuit

Album: Live at the Banks House

Label: None (released independently)

Release Date: November 11, 2010

Reviewer: Eric Pettersson

Tracklisting

  1. We Have Come
  2. Bless the Lord (Come Continued)
  3. Praise Is Befitting
  4. Help Me Find My Own Flame
  5. No Better Time (Flame Continued)
  6. Nothing I Hold Onto
  7. Climb
  8. If I Give It All
  9. In the Quiet
  10. Yeshua
  11. Set a Fire

Worship artists are sort of like the jam bands of Christian music. Both seem to have a love of acoustic guitars, choral singing, and bongo drums. Both take simple, three minute pop-rock songs and stretch them to at least five or six minutes, if not more. Both are more about the experience than the music itself. Thus, both are better live than on record. And thus, both have a bad reputation with music snobs everywhere. This puts Live at the Banks House, the latest from worship artist Will Reagan & United Pursuit, in an interesting place. It’s genuine worship music, and it’s a live recording from a house show rather than a studio reproduction. It’s the real experience, caught on tape, which can be weird or powerful depending on how one approaches it. My first listen was on the way home from church, and I was almost in tears by the time I reached my driveway. Musically, it is incredibly relaxing, though the volume rises and falls throughout each song, akin to the work of folk singer Damien Rice. There is power and feeling, and one can sing along right away, as phrases are repeated over and over on bridges and choruses. Strings and a piano gently compliment the voices, acoustic guitars, and djembe drumming. Will’s soft tenor leads, sometimes with female back-up, sometimes with the entire room joining in praise of God. As a result, it is not casual listening. It is a worship experience, and the listener is invited to enter into that experience. My second listen was in the background as I did some devotional reading, which worked well, but I would not play this album while doing work or socializing with friends. It is the sort of music that really does sound good, but you still only listen to it for the purpose of connecting with God. And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.

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