God of Wonders: Volume 1 serves as a sort of spin-off of the City On a Hill worship project series. From the makers of the City... projects, God... can almost be considered an add-on or partial b-side of a City album. God of Wonders mixes recent original worship hits with brand new renditions of popular songs.
God of Wonders: Volume 1 opens with Third Day's "Your Love Oh Lord," a melodic pop tune from their 1999 album Time. While the previous two City projects featured all new songs and collaborations recorded almost exclusively for those records, God... doesn't mind to borrow from older albums. "He Is Exalted" is wonderfully performed by husband/wife duo of Marc Byrd (Common Children) and Christine (Glass) Byrd, Adore. Adore puts beautiful spins on the worship favorites like this one and "As The Deer." They're liable to make the listener yearn for a full release from these guys. Their tunes alone make this album a special treat.
Jars of Clay's song "Needful Hands" from the 1998 Rocketown Records worship project Exodus preceeds the debut of Paul Colman Trio and their nontraditional version of "I Love You, Lord." Being a big fan of this classic song, I was rather disappointed in their take on the song, as they've sped it up and altered its normal rhythm. "We Delight" was featured on Caedmon's Call's 2001 release In the Company of Angels. Newcomer Sarah Sadler offers a pretty good, soft rendition of Keith Green's famous "Oh Lord, You're Beautiful." Michael W. Smith's live version of his song "Agnus Dei" just doesn't seem to fit like it should among the other eleven studio-recorded tracks. FFH's "We Sing Alleluia," from their 2001 release Have I Ever Told You is followed by a successful collaboration of Jason Ingram and Sonicflood for "All In All." Sonicflood's "Lord Over All," from their 2001 record Resonate, leads into "God Of Wonders," the same recording by Mac Powell (of Third Day) and Cliff and Danielle Young (of Caedmon's Call) that was featured on the original 2000 City On a Hill release.
While it doesn't appear to be its initial intent, God of Wonders would have fared better with a full track list of original songs rather than just five. Regardless, the collection of songs is a good one, and the new tracks included are ones not to miss.- Review date: 4/21/02, written by John DiBiase
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