North Carolina's Elevation Worship is preparing to release another exceptional live album this spring. There Is A Cloud, recorded live at Elevation Ballantyne, is set for a March 17th release and can be pre-ordered on iTunes now. Elevation Worship has become an influential voice in churches around the world with CCLI charting songs such as “Only King Forever,” “Give Me Faith,” and “Unstoppable God.” This new record follows the chart-topping 2016 release Here As In Heaven, and is the tenth full-length release from the church. In addition to the release of a new record, Elevation Worship is also gearing up for the Outcry 2017 Spring Tour. They will be joining Lauren Daigle, Jesus Culture and others on an 18 city tour that kicks off on April 20th. Elevation Worship founding members and featured vocalists Chris Brown and Mack Brock recently took some time to talk with us about the new record and spring tour plans.
First off, congratulations on the upcoming release of There Is A Cloud! To begin, can you give us some insight into the album's title track and why you chose it to represent the collection?
Thank you! In 1 Kings there's a story about Elijah telling his servant to go look for a raincloud when the country had been in a drought for 3 years. And his servant comes back 6 times saying there’s no sign of rain. But finally on the 7th time, he reports that he sees a small cloud rising out over the sea. And it felt like a great message to center our album around – that when we find ourselves in a season of drought, a season of waiting or of wondering when we'll see the harvest from what we've been sowing, we can trust that God is faithful, throughout it all! When God gives us a promise, it’s no longer a matter of if, but when. A season of drought doesn’t mean the death of a promise, only a delay. Cause what God promises, He'll always do. So this title track for the album is centered around the faithfulness of God.
How long has the team been working on writing and recording this new album?
We have been playing these songs in our church for over a year, but we recorded the album in the fall of 2016 at our 12 day Code Orange Revival.
Who/what were some of your biggest inspirations in constructing this new project?
We pull from a lot of sources for inspiration in sounds and song structures - but our biggest influence has just been the style of our musicians and church over the past several years playing music together. Figuring out our sound and tone for these songs that is along the lines of what we do every weekend at church. Some outside influences range from Killers, Coldplay, Kygo, Hillsong, Chance, kind of all over the place.
Was the process of making this record more similar or different compared to recording previous projects?
It was very similar to recording other projects. The way we work with our team, we've got set timelines of working these songs out on the front end, leading into the recording - going through several layers of pre-production before the actual event. This project was, however, different because we recorded it at our revival and had multiple times to go through each song during the 12 night revival and hone in the sound and structure of each song.
Were there any songs that were particularly challenging to write or record?
I'd say the song "Do It Again" took shape over the longest period of time. It actually started with Matt Redman hearing a sermon from Pastor Steven in July 2014. The line that started the song was from that sermon - "the promise still stands." After spending some weeks on it without much progress, the song idea got buried. Then in the fall of 2015, a year and a half later, we circled back on it and wrote the bridge and verses. In a lot of ways I guess the actual process of writing this particular song resonates with its message.
Is there one particular song that has a very personal meaning for you?
I believe my favorite is the song called "Yours (Glory and Praise)." It's a very vertical song centered around God's glory and grand nature of the worship that is taking place around his throne day and night. But there's one line in the verse that really touches me every time. It contrasts his power and majesty with his heart for us in one very personal line: "So high above, yet slain for us."
What do you hope listeners take away from There Is A Cloud?
We hope this album reminds people that God is always working on their behalf. That even in times of silence, or pain, or doubt, His purpose and love for us still remain. And our highest hope is that each song would lead people to an atmosphere of worship, wherever they find themselves listening to it.
In addition to preparing for the release of this new record, you guys are also gearing up for the Outcry Spring Tour. What can fans expect from your set?
We're very excited to be coming to a lot of amazing cities with Outcry again! I think people can expect to hear some songs from the last few albums, as well as a handful of these new songs from There Is A Cloud. Hope to see you there!