On Friday night, students and community members gathered at the United Supermarkets Arena for Hillsong UNITED’s “The People Tour.”
Hillsong UNITED is a worship band from Hillsong Church in Sydney, Australia, according to its website. The group was formed in 1998 and was named Top Christian Artist at the 2016 Billboard Music Awards.
Having a band this big come to Lubbock is a big deal, Kody Vann, a Lubbock resident said.
“Lubbock doesn’t have a lot of things like this so I thought it’d be really cool (to attend) and their music is so uplifting and reaches a lot of people,” she said.
Before Hillsong UNITED performed, special guests Amanda Lindsey Cook + Mack Brock took the stage. Though she didn’t know the opening artists prior to the concert, Cook’s performance was one of her favorite parts of the night, Vann said.
“She was amazing and I loved her energy and I loved how that you could definitely feel her love for what she’s doing,” she said.
Vann has become a fan of Hillsong UNITED in the last one to two years, she said, with the release of their most recent albums.
The concert in the USA was her first time hearing them perform live, and they lived up to her expectations.
“I’ve heard things and so far it’s been really good,” she said.
The atmosphere at the concert was unique relative to concerts from other musicians because of the nature of the band, Mallory Bennett, junior human sciences major from Plainview, said.
“They feel the same but different in the sense it’s more obviously Christ-centered and the goal is just to worship God,” she said.
Being in a room with so many people worshipping Christ, including her mom and sister, was her favorite part of the event, she said.
The message promoted by the band at the concert and in their music in general is important, Diana Garza, a fan from Littlefield, said. Garza attended the event with her husband and kids.
“I love the message that they portray in every song, for the family as well,” she said.
Her whole heart is in praise and worship, she said. It is her favorite thing and those values are reflected in Hillsong UNITED.
The songs have a message that bring listeners back to the gospel, Paige Hester, a campus minister with Chi Alpha campus ministry, said.
“I love anytime that a song has a message that brings us back to the heart of the gospel which is that we are not enough of in and of ourselves but with Jesus, he’s enough and our lives can be something better than it was enough,” Hester said.
The message of Hillsong UNITED’s music extends past typical worship music and the focus on religion, Vann said.
“They add a lot more into it," she said. "It’s about the love for God and that kind of stuff.”
The band is a great place for those who are not familiar with worship music to start, she said.
“Honestly the worship music world has a bad kind of rap and a bad look to it just because of the religion aspect of it, but for them you can genuinely tell that’s it’s not just about that, it’s their love for people and their love for anybody and everybody, Christian or not,” she said.
The concert and Hillsong UNITED’s message allows listeners like her to both worship and enjoy time with friends, Hester said.
“God loves entertainment and he is an entertainer himself, otherwise how could he have made such a crazy awesome, exciting world and so it’s fun that stuff like this can be exciting and fun and church can be fun,” she said.