Tuesday, February 28, 2006

The Bob Kauflin Hymns Project and Passion Worship Band's Hymns Ancient and Modern

I have recently purchased the CDs Upward: The Bob Kauflin Hymns Project and Passion Worship Band’s Hymns Ancient and Modern. The Bob Kauflin Hymns Project was released in 2003, while Hymns Ancient and Modern was released in 2004.

If the name Bob Kauflin sounds familiar to you, he is the worship leader behind the worship CD Chosen Treasure, one of my favorite worship albums that was released in the early 1990s. Chosen Treasure has given us a couple of memorable worship songs, such as How Great Is Your Love (How High And How Wide), We Give Thanks, and Thank You For The Cross, which are still being sung in churches today. Bob Kauflin is also the director of worship development for Sovereign Grace Ministries, a family of Reformed Charismatic churches.

Both CDs attempt to remake the hymns using contemporary arrangements. While Passion Worship Band chose mostly familiar hymns, the hymns chosen by Bob Kauflin tends to be a little off the beaten path.

Perhaps I am getting old or something, but I thought Hymns Ancient and Modern is rather so-so, while I immensely enjoy The Bob Kauflin Hymns Project. I have heard Passion Worship Band’s typical style of worship many times, and I do feel a tinge of disappointment that the hymns are set to similar “heavy” arrangements found in their older live worship CDs such as Better Is One Day. I am not saying that Hymns Ancient and Modern is no good or I do not enjoy the CD, but I guess my expectation of Passion Worship Band is higher after hearing The Bob Kauflin Hymns Project.

The style of worship by Passion Worship Band gravitates towards heavy bass, electric guitar and synthesizers coupled with a live atmosphere, while Bob Kaulfin concentrates more on creative acoustic arrangements, in which I can appreciate the tight vocals supported by the acoustic guitar, piano and percussive instruments. My favorite song in The Bob Kauflin Hymns Project is Mercies Anew, which I thought it would be great as a special item.

If you like “quiet” and “relaxing” worship albums like Lenny LeBlanc’s Above All, John Chisum’s Firm Foundation and Martin Nystrom’s In Christ Alone, you would probably love The Bob Kauflin Hymns Project.

You can preview the music from The Bob Kauflin Hymns Project, as well as download free lead sheets and chord charts at the Sovereign Grace Ministries website.

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