Glorious Encounter is a worship group created out of the desire to release the presence and creativity of God through discipleship and music.
Glorious Encounter released their debut album titled Your Presence in February 2018.
The album’s powerful worship songs include “Glorious,” which captures the intimacy of our relationship with God and our response of praise and exaltation. “Anchor of My Soul” has a fresh and creative sound declaring the faithfulness and stability of our Heavenly Father. “Your Presence,” the final song on the album, boldly declares: “Your presence is heavy, but Your burden is light. Come into this place as our hearts come alive.”
The project began with Devon Glenn, former songwriter and drummer for Grammy-nominated, platinum-selling hard rock band Buckcherry. At the height of his music career, Devon left the industry when he realized that the message in his music was not what he wanted his life to represent.
Devon is the drummer and album producer. After his radical salvation in 2014, he and his wife Mie began doing missions work and speaking on Kingdom business, worship, and discipleship. Devon and his family reside in Niigata, Japan as evangelists in full-time ministry. They work church planting, equipping others, promoting Kingdom business, and fighting the problem of suicide in Japan.
God has now renewed his passion for music. In 2017, Devon began writing songs with singer and songwriter Johnny Zirkel and worship leader Chris Deming. This team felt an instant connection, and it was evident that God’s hand was bringing them together.
Chris is a solo artist and worship leader who spent six years in Central America as a missionary focusing on Kingdom business and worship leading. He then served as Worship and Outreach Pastor for Convergence School of Supernatural Ministry in Forth Worth, Texas. He has led worship in settings as diverse as Brazilian slums, Costa Rican safe houses, and Thai human trafficking centers. He and his wife, Megan, now reside in California. Megan is also a singer on the album.
Johnny Zirkel is the lead singer and songwriter from the band Reverse Order. He formed the band The Wildfires Projekt to focus on reaching and helping those suffering from mental illness. Johnny co-founded the internationally recognized nonprofit Reverse The Trend. Over the past four years, he has brought anti-bullying and suicide-prevention programs to over 400 schools nationwide. Johnny has a passion to reach those suffering from mental illness and those who need to experience God’s presence in their lives.
Other members of the group include Laura Wineland, who sang on the album, including lead vocals on the song Amazed By You. Uriel Soto, the recording engineer, plays bass and keyboards. The album was mixed and mastered by Tanner Sparks, who has worked with artists such as Switchfoot, Weezer and Jon Forman.
Glorious Encounter shares a passion for global revival and the transformation of nations. The group continues to write music and lead worship at their local churches, worship conferences, and gatherings around the world.
NEW ALBUM - Your Presence NOW AVAILABLE!
The Holy Spirit is certainly still working in today's world. While conversion stories like those of Brian "Head" Welch are widely publicized, others are just as radical, but not as well-known. One of these lesser heard, but similarly powerful, stories is that of Devon Glenn. Glenn was the drummer, and a founding member, of the rock band Buckcherry. In the 90s, Glenn played massive shows jamming to the band's number one hit "Lit Up" -- a staple of the late 90's alt/rock scene. The song glorifies cocaine usage as the chorus simply goes, "I love the cocaine; I love the cocaine. Mama can't you wait?" Buckcherry broke up in 2002, but later reformed in 2005. Glenn didn't rejoin the band, but instead set off on another path. In 2014, Devon Glenn accepted Jesus Christ as his Savior and began doing missions work. He is currently living in Japan with his family continuing missions, planting churches, and helping to fight the massive suicide problem. However, in 2017, God began to renew Glenn's passion for music and he started writing music with John Russo and Chris Deming. The trio felt an instant connection and, along with a few other members, Glorious Encounter was born with a vision and goal to "release the presence and creativity of God through discipleship and music." The group's debut, Your Presence, released in February of 2018.
Glorious Encounter's musical style is acoustic worship, but it's also very melodic. "Glorious" fittingly opens the album as a worship song that is both familiar and new. While the sound is certainly not foreign to listeners of modern worship music, Glorious Encounter's approach is a little more fresh and organic. While the album opener is strong, "Anchor of My Soul" raises the bar. It's an album-best track that even won the CMUnited Christian Songwriting Contest. "Kingdom Comes" keeps the strong songwriting coming, but "Amazed By You" really perks your ears as Laura Wineland is featured on lead vocals. Wineland's voice is gorgeous and fits the music perfectly in what is definitely another stand-out track. The album goes into another two solid numbers -- "All Our Praise" and "Honor" -- before going into a prayer track. While it's super simple, the bridge of "Honor" may just be the pinnacle of the entire experience. Demings sings, "We bring You, all of the honor, all of the glory, all of our worship, Lord you are worthy." The music begins to build and then Demings continues by repeating the line, "You deserve it all," before going back into the bridge line again. It's an extremely powerful and worshipful moment. The album comes to a close with the song "Your Presence." The lyrics ask for God's presence to enter and Demings sings, "Your presence is heavy, but Your burden is light, so come and fill this place as our hearts come alive in You." It's another fairly simple worship song, but it carries so much weight.
While Devon Glenn became famous because of a song about cocaine, the true star in his story is the redeeming power and nature of our God; He can change and use any of us to carry His word to the nations. His story is an impressive testimony to this very thing. While the Glorious Encounter's debut is just barely over 30 minutes in length, what is presented is much more substantial. The band Lifehouse comes to mind on several occasions, both vocally and musically, while listening. At times, Deming's voice is reminiscent [in style] of Jason Wade's ("Glorious') and at times, the melodies even sound like Lifehouse ("Amazed By You"). Fans of acoustic music and modern worship music alike should find a lot to love about this album. Listeners who find today's worship music to be boring and repetitive should also pay attention to this record -- it's not your everyday CCM radio kind of outing. Your Presence gets better and better with each listen and I cannot recommend listening to this album enough; it's a phenomenal record.
- Review date: 3/12/18, written by Michael Weaver of Jesusfreakhideout.com