Highly Rated Music From An Underrated Band | Posted April 09, 2012 Staff Reviewer
Hillsong, Gateway, and Lakewood... What do these three churches have in common? Other than a popular social status, all three bodies have been critically acclaimed for the continually solid efforts their respected worship teams have brought forth. Having introduced us to singer/songwriters such as Martha Munizzi, Israel Houghton, Kari Jobe, Joel Houston and Darlene Zschech, these several bands have written songs that have forever changed the face worship in churches all around the globe.
Among many of the worship teams who are following their lead, a group known as Desperation Band might be one of the most overlooked.
The worship team hailing from New Life Church in Colorado Springs, Colo., is fronted by musician Jon Egan. While his name might not sound familiar, his songs certainly will, having penned hits such as "Overcome" (Jeremy Camp) and "I Am Free" (Newsboys).
Although the group has released a handful of projects since their conception back in 2001, their biggest break came with 2007‘s Everyone Overcome, featuring the previously mentioned "Overcome." The song became New Life Church's battle-cry after a tragic shooting on the campus back in December of 2007.The song gained widespread attention in the church with it's almost prophetic declaration of hope and catapulted the band to notoriety within the CCM industry.
It's been a number of years since, but as far as the group's mission goes, nothing has changed.
"Desperation Band has always been and always will be about the presence of God. We exist to bring Him glory and reveal His truth to a broken world. If we know who His is, we know who we are" says Egan of the group, "it's not a youth movement. It's not a church movement. It's a people movement."
Continually desiring to make a big God known to a broken world, the band's latest studio effort, Center Of It All, comes as a wake-up call to believers, reminding them to make God their everything.
"All To Him" begins the album as an epic anthem of dedication to the God we serve. "Wonderful" is an upbeat worshipful tune that I can see many youth groups adopting with its fun and passionate presence.
The chilling "Strong God" paints beautiful portrait of the Savior and meshes it against the backdrop of a haunting backline. "Magnified" is a powerful song of praise, although feels a little musically simplistic.
"God You Are My God" meets the listeners with yet another does of heavy strings that'll sure to leave them wanting more, while "My God" serves as the lyrically strongest song on the record, talking about the fallacy of humanity, and the beauty of our Savior: "This is my God, holy and pure, sovereign and sure, only my God bled for my soul, now I surrender all."
"Our God Is Coming" continues the album's powerful yet mellow track of unhindered worship and leads directly into the namesake, "Center Of It All." Picking up the pace a bit, this is yet another song the church will immediately gravitate too for Sunday morning set lists.
"This I Know" and "You Are The Glory" both serve as abandoned tracks of surrender. The most memorable track on the record however, comes next the form of "We Will Not Forget." Coming from a personal place of brokenness, it becomes a believers cry unto God that they will serve Him and not forget all He has done for them, even when life is at it's hardest. It's a beautiful song.
The final two tracks on the record come as partners of sorts with "Take Me To The River" and "River Flow." The first song being about our need to for living water, and the second being a follow-up, talking about the life we will find when we finally drink deep the living water of Jesus. The latter of the two being my personal favorite.
Jon Egan, as well as the joint members of Desperation Band, are one of Christian music's more low-key worship acts. And while fame isn't what the band is reaching for, with their captivating songwriting and beautiful melodies, I hope to see them gain more exposure in the coming years, seeing as they have quite a bit to offer the worship music genre.
Even though Center Of It All isn't Desperation Band's strongest effort to date, it paints a solid picture of their current vision and ushers in a powerful time of praise to our Creator. It's not the most upbeat worship project of the year, and does it does tend to stay on the mellow side, but for intimate times of soaking in the presence of God, this will be your turn to album.