Hillsong United's brand new album Empires has literally soared to great heights, having just been launched into space.
"We thought if ever there was a place to launch our new album, it should be somewhere that we've never been before," shared lead singer Joel Houston in a blog. "And in a world that strives desperately to reach new heights, in search of new highs, we thought we would send this thing as far and as high as we could go naturally, knowing full well that where this thing will land, and ultimately what this project and our lives are all about, begins and ends where our knees hit the ground."
Houston explained that their brand new album tells the story of two worlds - the world we live in now and God's glorious kingdom.
"Our prayer and desire has been to simply create the most honest project we could. Songs that seek to listen first, and then with God's breath speak the good news reality of Jesus and His grace into the dichotomy, tension and hopeful-collision of this broken and fragile world we see here and now, and the unshakeable and mysterious reality of the Kingdom we can't see, but no-less know is here - and NOW," shared Houston.
The singer also teased about the album art in their Facebook page, saying that "with everything we do, there is a desire to be intentional, even if it is random."
The album art features an inverted "UNITED" with several horizontal and vertical white lines over a black font. Houston said that he originally did not want to say too much about the art, as he likes having people come to their own conclusions about it.
But he only confused fans more with his questions: "Obviously it's black and white. But which one holds the negative space? Is it black on white, or is it white on black? Are the lines and the grid vertical or horizontal or are they both in fact both?"
In the end, he admitted that the whole album art is a "paradox" and told fans that faith comes by hearing.