Rend Collective’s Good News Leaves Listeners Joyful


Last year, a well-known Irish band called Rend Collective held a concert in the small town of Sumter, S.C. I didn’t know of this band at the time, but my friends that went later blared their anthem, “Build Your Kingdom Here” at a church event, effectively getting me hooked on the folksy songs of Rend Collective.

January 2018 brought Rend Collective’s newest album, Good News. Throughout the record, the Irish worship band explores the highs and lows of their faith through traditional and not-so-traditional sounds. The band’s music is diverse, but the overarching theme of the good news of Jesus is the same, loud and clear, throughout.

Besides Rend’s inspiring lyrics, they utilize their huge band by exploring new sounds every song. For example, the song “I Will Remain Undignified” mixes a traditional Irish fiddle sound with a more pop-like melody. On the other end, the track “Yahweh” keeps instruments simple but highlights their vocal talent and power.

My absolute favorite song on the album is the first track, “Life Is Beautiful.” It starts off upbeat and showcases the group’s many-piece band with its quick instrumentation. Later on, the chorus takes this upbeat feeling and puts it into a single word: Rejoice! After a few more verses of this cheery tune, the instrumentation simplifies as just a voice and guitar declare the title phrase, “Life is Beautiful.” I love how Rend matches the way the members play to the praises they sing; a call to rejoice is accompanied by a joyous flute, while the awe they proclaim at God’s creation is accentuated by a more uncomplicated guitar sound.

This album teaches the listener to recognize and declare the good news in everything. In the ups, in the downs and even in the middle. Rend’s record will remain at the top of my playlist, just as their joyful praises and thoughtful lyrics will remain at the front of my mind.