This Monday I am revisiting an album I reviewed a while ago because it's been THAT kind of month and I really needed something (If you know what I mean). I needed a refreshing and for God to just wipe the slate clean (as He does) and for me to start this new month with new thoughts and a fresh inspiration. Maybe you felt the same? Maybe you're also going through the mid year slump? Join the team :) Laurene Bonsink released her debut album in January 2015 and let me tell you, this CD is really something else! This is the review I wrote for Gateway News:
Bonsink recorded the album in the Netherlands, where she currently resides, leading worship in one of its biggest churches, Doorbrekers. She shares that her longing for more “free worship” and the prophetic in the local church is what led the worship leader on a journey to singing spontaneous God-instructed songs during services and eventually recording an album that has the depth to “take you to the heart of God the Father,” as described on her website. This sound is evident in her album and I thoroughly enjoyed the unobtrusive, delicate way in which she ministers in the prophetic. It was easy for me to rest in God’s presence, whilst listening to Bonsink’s serene vocals and honest, unfussy songwriting.
Bonsink’s heart is evident in her song recordings. Each song leaves room for you to encounter your own Holy Spirit movement whilst listening to it because of the uncomplicated arrangements and her moving so easily into spontaneous worship that it gives the listener unconscious permission to do the same.
An example is Track 2, Beautiful Saviour. With simple lyrics that say: “You’re beautiful God/You’re beautiful Saviour/You’re beautiful King,” I immediately got caught up in the attributes of God while listening to her minister so effortlessly.
Other songs that include a time for free worship are I want to beand Safe with you. Both tracks have easy, likeable melodies and straightforward, heartfelt lyrics that make it easy for you to enter into a personal time of worship. In my opinion, it would’ve been nice to hear even more spontaneous worship from the singer.
The electro intro of Safe in your arms immediately grabbed my attention. The song has a more contemporary sound and is so different from the first four tracks. It was quite unexpected.
You will never leave us is a wordy song that speaks about the power of Christ’s work on the cross. It’s a typical Easter song but with a unique sound – almost ethereal instrumentation and beautiful vocals by Bonsink and David van den Heuvel. Another Easter song, It is done, has almost the same sound but with lyrics that paint a picture of the Crucifixion of Christ.
I found Father God to be a beautiful, easy-to-listen-to heart song. In fact, if my guitar skills were up to par, I would probably download the chord charts and lyrics to this one from herwebsite. Another guitar-based track that grabbed me was bonus track, Your love. Unlike the original (which is actually Track 3 on the album), the bonus track only features an acoustic guitar accompanying Bonsink’s vocals. In the song’s bridge, she croons “How deep you touch me Lord/how deep you do/I’m falling more and more in love with you.” Stunning!
Album closer, He is King, is a declarative song with a chorus that simply says: “He is King/we raise our voices/we sing/He is King”. It has the potential to be a congregational anthem and has really powerful moments, which I quite enjoyed.
If you enjoy worship that is easy to listen to, but has depth, then I would recommend this album to you. If I could describe it in one word, I’d say “airy” – It gave me the feeling of having room to relax, breathe and let go. There isn’t a lot to focus on except the beauty of the presence of God and who He is, and as much as I love big productions and big vocals with 5-part harmonies, there is a beauty in worshipping with music that is simplistic and focused on having the Holy Spirit move.
If you would like to purchase a copy of this album, you can visit Laurene Bonsinks website or contact Harry Chesling at 082 320 2853 for more information.
This review was originally written for and published in Gateway News