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Ultimate Collection Volume II

  • reviewed by Andree Farias Copyright Christianity Today International
  • 2008 1 Dec
Ultimate Collection Volume II
Sounds like … a sampling of some of the most recent worship choruses that have made their mark on the church through Hillsong, ranging from lively praise rockers to anthemic ballads.At a glance … some notable omissions aside, this second volume in Hillsong's Ultimate Collection series is serviceable in chronicling the worship team's recent history. Track ListingSalvation Is HereThe Freedom We KnowFrom the Inside OutTo the Ends of the EarthLord of AllLet Creation SingHallelujahLet Us AdoreCame to My RescueTake It AllThe StandFor All You've DoneFor Who You AreAt the CrossNone but JesusGod He ReignsMighty to Save

As the foremost exponent in live congregational worship, Hillsong has produced its share of anthologies, compilations, and other special projects, in part fueled by an insatiable public interest in their hefty repertoire. Now that the church's youth team United has grown even more popular, the need to anthologize the catalog has become more pressing, if not somewhat gratuitous.

Such is the case with Ultimate Collection Volume II, the second chapter of a new saga begun with 2005's Ultimate Worship, a generous yet otherwise incomplete collection of some of the most beloved Hillsong choruses. However middling, that first collection chronicled the worship team's early history and hits, with attention going to favorites and deep album cuts.

Ultimate Collection Volume II is not too dissimilar, zeroing in on songs both classic and nonessential from Hillsong's latter-day history, which includes the albums Look to You, God He Reigns, United We Stand, and Mighty to Save—2007's Saviour King and 2008's This Is Our God are mysteriously not represented, perhaps because they're considered too new for this compilation. Whatever the reason, key songs are missing like "Saviour King," "Break Free," and "Hosanna"—all anthems that came out of the United phenomenon.

Indeed, most of the highlights here come from the United catalog. "Salvation Is Here," "From the Inside Out," "Came to My Rescue," "Take It All," "The Stand," and "None but Jesus" all qualify as some of the very best Hillsong has ever produced. When compared to the more staid selections by the adult team ("Lord of All, "Let Creation Sing," "Let Us Adore"), it's clear who's at the vanguard of the congregation these days.

Which is perhaps the reason why the compilers broke the rules a bit and dipped back into songs from 2003's Hope and 2004's For All You've Done (such as "Hallelujah," "For All You've Done," and "To the Ends of the Earth")—both discs have already had a chance to be featured in the first edition of the Ultimate series. When all is said and done, Ultimate Collection Volume II is completely unnecessary if you're already a Hillsong completist. But for everyone else, it's a good retrospective, particularly when accompanied by its 3-year-old predecessor.

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