By Michael Miller
You probably won’t hear Loud Harp’s music in the mix of the praise-and-worship part of your service this Sunday. It’s not really meant for that.
“The songs that we write, we never think about other people singing them in churches,” says Dave Wilton, one half of the group.
That’s because of how most of Loud Harp’s songs were conceived spontaneously by Dave and bandmate Asher Seevinck, also of Seafinch.
“We really want to make sure (the songs come) from our hearts to our Savior,” Dave says. “Most of the worship music used is written by a team of writers, like 10 writers, and that feels a little disingenuous to me.”
That doesn’t mean Loud Harp’s songs aren’t performed in churches occasionally.
“We get emails weekly about worship pastors playing, sharing our songs with their community,” he says. “More than that, we hear about people who are in the midst of life, people who are struggling. There is a need for lamentation in worship. Eighty percent of our songs are lamentation, and most churches’ services are just wonderful celebrations and praise music, and I really love that. However, there is something beautiful about giving God our honest thoughts and prayers like the psalmists did.
“People who have never been able to connect with God through normal worship music, our songs are a little bit more geared toward how the psalmists wrote. People go through rough times. Using our songs is a way of worshipping God through the questioning, through the mourning, through the difficulty.”
Such songs include “Hold Me Together” (“I cry out to the one/The one that holds me/Holds me together”) and “Hide Me Away” (“Hide me away, Father/In You I have no fear/I’m safe in Your arms”).
Dan Wilton describes his brother’s music as “speaking to the Lord’s beauty.”
“There’s a lot of melody and countermelody and rhythm that lifts the soul,” he says. “I think Dave’s heart was always to make music that would cause theological reflection. It doesn’t have to be a tried-and-true praise-and-worship song to do that.”
He called Dave’s music “a big, sonic landscape filled with beautiful reverb and echoes and delay.”
“I’m a fan.”