Each summer, Clarks Summit University in Northeastern PA hosts a leadership conference for teenagers, and part of that event is a worship band. You could say that this is where the band now called Evergreen began. However, immediately get the "summer camp worship band" thought out of your head, because this band is exceptionally different from what you're probably imagining. After years of serving at this conference together, the band struggled with the idea that they were coming to an end. However, after receiving much encouragement and prompting from people to continue to create music for the church, Evergreen was officially born. This EP is their first release.
"Encounter The Glorious" opens the EP and is a well-paced intro worship track that serves as a song of full surrender and is worthy to be played during any worship service. Up next is "Faithful," which slows the pace a bit to reflect on God's steadfast love and faithfulness despite our weaknesses. The song was written as an outflow of wonderment that God would save us while we are lost in our sin. "Take The World" is an amazing, updated and altered version of an old hymn, certain to draw listeners closer to Jesus as the words cry out, "Til with clearer, brighter vision, face to face my Lord I see." The next track, titled "Mercy Ran," is simply the most powerful worship song I have ever heard. The building of sounds from soft and slow to loud and strong form a stellar backdrop to powerful and stirring words like "when justice called for payment, mercy ran to die for me." You can't help but be moved by what the Savior has done for a lost and undeserving world. "Light Of the World" ends this short EP as a light and upbeat conclusion to this introduction of Evergreen.
If you buy the physical CD online, you will also catch the bonus track "All Creatures of Our God and King" where the band again nicely modernizes a classic hymn. If "Mercy Ran" or "Encounter the Glorious" were released by someone known, like Hillsong or Rend Collective, they would be overtaking your worship radio airwaves everywhere. This is a great little worship album that not only sounds good, but is theologically deep. The lyrics are biblically driven, full of truth, and seek to move listeners toward the Savior by reflecting on Him and what He has done for us. I am excited for the future of this band, and if you're into worship albums, this may be the best sampling (albeit small) of worship songs you'll hear all year.
- Review date: 9/25/17, written by Kevin Hoskins of Jesusfreakhideout.com