Artist: delirious? aka Cutting Edge Band
Label: Furious?/ US Distributed by Sparrow Records
Time: 25 tracks/120:24
Before there was a delirious?, there was a youth worship event called Cutting Edge (not too far from where I sit and write). Cutting Edge had a house band called, creatively enough, The Cutting Edge Band. Before changing their name to delirious?, the Cutting Edge Band made four recordings called the Cutting Edge tapes. What happened afterwards is British CCM history, but these recordings have been re-mastered and re-packaged and appear now as a double album to introduce the American Christian audience to delirious?.
The first CD supplied here contains volumes one and two of these releases. Compared with the delirious? sounds of today they sound much more like a good, if a little typical, worship band, but put it in the context of a few years ago and this was new stuff. Songs like "Lord You Have My Heart," "Thank You for Saving Me," and "I Could Sing of Your Love Forever" have lost none of their timeless intimacy.
your river runs with love for me,
and I will open up my heart and let the healer set me free.
I'm happy to be in the truth,
and I will daily lift my hands:
for I will always sing of when your love came down
(from "I Could Sing of Your Love Forever")
Of how you saved my soul
And I could dance a thousand miles
Because of your great love
It is interesting to hear some of the songs that haven't stood the test of time, or are played very differently now. For example, "The Crucible for Silver" is here given a faster arrangement than when played now (I prefer the current version). Tracks 10 and 12 point the most to the modern delirious? sound, but the vibey guitar sounds haven't fully developed. Already there is the nod of the head to U2, and Martin Smith's distinctive vocals, but the sound is still closer to a more exuberant Matt Redman than the modern delirious?
Disc two shows the real development of delirious?, kicking off with "Did You Feel the Mountains Tremble," the most popular pre-King of Fools track (according to a poll on a website, and general observations). This recording of the song has a big sound, with a good bit of reverb on the drums and spacious keyboard backing to the rhythmic guitars. "I've Found Jesus" is another song which is still a mainstay of many youth worship events. In some ways the lyrics are simplistic, but they are aided by passion and the beginnings of the characteristic guitar vibes.
Jesus is alive,
And all creation shouts aloud that
Jesus is alive
Now surely we can all be changed 'cos
Jesus is alive
And everybody here can know that
Jesus is alive
"Find Me in the River" is a gorgeous mellow number, with our introduction to Stu G's e-bow, which sounds at times almost Iona-esque. The song is far from Iona, though, with a more intimate sound backing confessional lyrics of commitment.
Find me on my knees
I've walked against the water
Now I'm waiting if you please
We've longed to see the roses
Find me in the river
"Obsession" continues the musical ideas first picked up in "Find Me in the River," with loads of e-bow and some guitar work that does sound very, very Iona-esque. Jon Thatcher's bass comes through loud and deep, and this is one to play loud with the lights off.
The second disc in this set is definitely the stronger, and a good primer for the delirious? of today. There are some excellent worship songs, the guitars are turned up a little louder, and the passion is clearer. Overall I would recommend listening to this disc if you want a taste of the newer worship music in the UK, as the earlier one isn't nearly as strong (but they both have some good songs). delirious? hadn't quite come of age with these recordings, and I'm not sure that King of Fools reached that either, but it is an interesting process watching their development.
By James Stewart
Since 1992 Delirious? has been revolutionizing the Christian music scene in England with their unique brand of worship and praise. What started out in 1992 as a small group of people gathering to worship Christ, known as Cutting Edge, has now grown into a movement that is on it's way to changing the way "church music" is played. The band has finally arrived in the U.S. with their debut release Cutting Edge This is a two CD package containing many of their songs made popular from 1992-95. For a time of praise to the Creator, you could not ask for more inspiring music. From the anthemic "Did You Hear the Mountains Tremble" to the soul-baring "Find Me in the River," the driving "Louder Than the Radio" to the sheer joy in Christ of "The Happy Song," it is obvious from the start that Delirious? is a group of guys who love the Lord and find joy in making music unto Him.
From the very beginning, the band is up front and honest about its
purpose. "The Message of the Cross" reminds us of what Jesus has done for
us by His work on the cross.
By Janet Friesen