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God of This City by Bluetree

Reviewed by Dale Lewis

"Bluetree is neither typical nor trendy . . . their worship leading is almost effortless."

If you’ve sung “God of This City” in a worship setting, you’re vaguely familiar with a band called Bluetree. Even though they penned this contagious, anthem-like song of worship, there is much more to Bluetree than these powerful lyrics.

With their debut album release, Irish worship band Bluetree creates a buzz that transcends time zones and international borders. The title track “God of the City” was written by the band while leading worship onstage at a squalid nightclub in Pattaya, Thailand. Since that first offering, it has been covered by Chris Tomlin’s on “Hello Love” as well as on the Passion’s World Tour.

Their lyrics are heartfelt and engaging. Most of the ten titles are prayers penned as songs. There is little to no concern with the entertainment value or the marketability of the album because the music of Bluetree is an invitation to worship. Lead vocalist and guitarist Aaron Boyd says, “We invite you to lose yourself in worship. Worship of the Almighty.” The first track has this lyrical line repeated four times: “We’ll drown out life’s noise with the praises of His name.” Their rendition of the classic hymn “When I Survey” allows the worshipper to close their eyes and personally and reflectively revisit His sacrifice.

Upon listening to the first few tracks of “God of This City,” it becomes quickly evident their offering is much deeper than a hastily thrown together collection of potential radio hits. Bluetree is neither typical nor trendy . . . their worship leading is almost effortless. Beyond the lyrics, their passion is easily heard through emotive vocals, the lushness of the keyboards, the thunderous drums and energetic wails of the guitars.

If you’re intrigued even a little about what’s behind the group’s name, it is about being unique in a world that often preaches conformity. Boyd states, “If you’re in a forest and there’s nothing but green trees – everything being as you’d normally see it – but then you see a blue tree with blue bark, blue leaves, blue branches, well, it would catch your eye. And as Christians we’re called to stand out, to be different- like blue trees.”

We are reminded, in His word, that the Lord invites us into His presence. Worship music is one of the conduits used to draw us in front of the audience of One. Bluetree’s “God of This City” will certainly be used by Christ-followers all over the world to adore and glorify the Almighty.

Dale Lewis now mans the front desk at the EFCA (The Evangelical Free Church of America) National Office in Minneapolis, MN. He was the graphic designer/pre-press production artist for over twelve years before being asked to step into this new role. Prior to that, he was the publications manager at his alma mater, Northwestern College in St. Paul, MN in the public relations office as well as the adviser to the college’s yearbook. He's a director/actor/writer for the Hope Church (Oakdale, MN) adult drama worship team and was the senior editor of the church newsletter. He's also written two collections of poetry, “Whispers of Assurance” and “On Life: Constant Communion Without Ceasing” as well as a devotional entitled “Eternal Education.” He and his family live in Oakdale, Minnesota.