With song titles such as Our God Reigns and Miracle Maker, Delirious? are not a band who are about to start hiding their Christian faith under a bushel in order to sell more records. Mind you, with them having sold more albums in America than Robbie Williams, perhaps they don’t need to.
Having said that, many of the tracks on The Mission Bell are so uncompromisingly “worship” from a lyrical perspective that they may well not appeal to non-Christians. This would be a shame since much of the album is full of passionate singing and tight and unselfish musicianship.
A few of the tracks are pure worship, where the band seem completely caught up in what they’re singing and playing and almost unaware of anything else. Miracle Maker, Our God Reigns and Take Off My Shoes all fall into this category, and perhaps it’s not a coincidence that they are amongst the longest tracks on the album.
Solid Rock is a different kettle of fish altogether and the best song on the album by a mile. This real stomper of a track deserves to be massive, with its haunting, insistent verses and sing-along, stadium-rocking chorus complete with backing singers’ refrain of “whoo-oo-oooo, yeah”.
On the downside, to these ears Stronger is a weak opening song – a bland and ponderous ballad of the type Coldplay‘s Chris Martin wrote for Embrace. Also, Love Is A Miracle, although it starts well with deep bluesy verses, becomes limited once it veers into a cheesy, very American chorus that tries to rhyme “fall” with “miracle”. Hmmm.
Nevertheless, The Mission Bell shows that Delirious? are a band of undoubted calibre and passion, who still have a lot to say. It will be enjoyed by those who like guitar-driven pop-rock, and should consolidate Delirious’ succesful forays Stateside. Unfortunately, however, the in-your-face lyrics mean that the album is unlikely to gather many new fans in the UK.