Generally, when one thinks of worship artists from Australia, there's really one name that comes to mind. That's reasonable, as Hillsong is basically a household name among those knowledgeable of the world of Christian music. But alongside Hillsong, another Sydney-based worship outfit is rising up and actively getting its music out there for any worshipers of Jesus to hear. The duo known as Hope Resounds
gave us a Christmas EP this past holiday season, but before that, they introduced themselves through a six-song EP called Let Hope Resound
. While Hillsong is known for long songs and loud, catchy anthems, Hope Resounds takes a softer approach to songwriting, with light instrumentation and mostly slower rhythms. Other than the slightly poppy vibe of "Almighty You," Let Hope Resound
keeps the pace pretty low. It's musically minimalistic, with basic chord progressions on the piano or guitar, and not much else, and can even be a little monotonous at times. The monotony is perhaps mostly attributed to the vocal melodies; Rachel Lowden is a good singer, for sure, but, unfortunately, the melodies can be rather uninteresting. In spite of this, the band's message still shines, as they sing their original songs of faith and praise. The title track speaks of the greatness of God ("The darkest of times, You are there, calming my restless heart, the storms of life do not frighten You, for You are greater
") while "Almighty You" recalls God's faithfulness to clear a path for us when we can't do it ourselves ("You go right before me, I'll give You all the glory, I will walk by faith, down a road paved by grace, I know in everything You do, I can always count on You, I'm laying down my pride, You've changed my whole life
"). With this first offering, it's clear that Hope Resounds is a very fitting name, as the band clearly believes in the hope of Jesus Christ. I'd love to see a little more diversity in sound - maybe some more complexity in songwriting - in future releases, but Let Hope Resounds
is a good start.
- Review date: 2/9/18, written by Scott Fryberger