Delirious? “Ultimate Collection” Album Review
Prime Cuts: Majesty, Lord You Have My Heart, Did You Feel the Mountains Tremble
Many Christian artists envisaged that the only to ever have a crossover pop hit is when they lowered the religious quotient in their songs. As a result, many of these acts have produced songs that are neither really secular love songs nor Christian songs, resulting in songs that are too nebulous for any good. This is not the case for Delirious? This British band has had 11 UK Top 40 hits but yet they are also staunchly upfront about their love for Jesus and His Gospel. They are not only verbal about their faith, but they have a deep-seated passion to make Jesus palatable through our lives in worship and social actions. Many of their songs are not only God-centered worship pieces but they also challenge us to translate the Gospel into actions.
Following in the footsteps of Tim Hughes, Paul Baloche and Paul Wilbur, Delirious? gets the ultimate treatment courtesy of Integrity Music "Ultimate Collection" is a retrospective collection that selectively garners 16 tracks from only a handful of Delirious? albums. Perhaps due to copyright reasons, only tracks from albums such as "Deeper," "World Service," "Cutting Edge Vol. 1 & 2," "King of Fools," "Glo" and "Farewell Show" are represented here. For the majority of their career, the line-up featured Martin Smith on vocals and guitar, Stu G (full name Stuart Garrard) on guitar and backing vocals, Jon Thatcher on bass guitar, Tim Jupp on keys and piano, and Stew Smith on drums and percussion. During their final two years, drumming duties were assumed by Paul Evans.
Even if you have never heard of Delirious? before, you would have heard many of their songs in church before. Already canonized as a modern worship classic, "I Could Sing of Your Love Forever" is simple yet it gorgeously expresses what true worship is all about. "Lord You Have My Heart" literally reaches down into our hearts and gives articulation to what we have been longing to say: "Lord you have my heart/And I will search for yours/Let me be to you a sacrifice." Setting the platform of bombastic anthemic worship for later acts like Passion, Chris Tomlin and Jesus Culture is "Shout to the North." And who can forget one of those earth shattering moments when the team thunders with holy awe in the classic worship shout-out "Did You Feel the Mountains Tremble?"
Paving the way for Matt Redman and Kari Jobe with those big pounding Jesus-focused worship ballads is "Majesty." Even though the song is already 13 years-old, "Majesty" still sounds so fresh, captivating, and worshipful. With its muffled percussion, its zinging guitar blasts, and its Bono-esque vocals, "History Makers" gives definition to Delirious?' career sound. "What a Friend I've Found" and "Jesus' Blood" show the band's versatility in handling a folk-ish cum country slowie as well as an ethereal synth-based ballad respectively.
Nevertheless, after 17 years of making so many worship classics, members of the band have decided to take a long hiatus. Though various members of the team have had various degrees of success pursuing their own individual careers, they could not replicate the magic, the passion, and the God-inspired worship as witnessed in these earlier songs. "Ultimate Collection" is such a snapshot of the band's greatest moments.
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