Anchor Hymns is a multigenerational collective of artists creating songs of worship and reflection infused with Neo Soul, Indie Rock, and Blues accents. Formed about a year ago, Anchor Hymns started as friends with the desire to write new songs based on those they sung growing up. The second part of their initial project, an EP called ‘Give Thanks’, introduces soulful versions of beloved church classics around the theme of God’s kindness to us and His presence with so many generations of believers – before and after us. “This, in turn, leaves us in a place of humility and service,” says Andrew Osenga, who gathered the collective and plays guitar on ‘Give Thanks’. “We hope these songs can be sung again in new ways – in ways that inspire us to give our lives in honor of what Jesus has done for us, to serve our neighbors, and even love our enemies,” he adds. ‘Give Thanks’ blurs the distinctions between more anthemic “arena worship” and small-scape community songs focusing on feel and groove.
The new Anchor Hymns project honors the metropolitan melting pot of cultures that happens when God’s people gather together. The EP’s title track, ‘Give Thanks’, is a firm favorite for Osenga, “there’s something counter-cultural about it,” he says before celebrating Mission House and Jasmine Mullen (The New Respects) for how they carried the song; “I have watched them for years give of their lives in service of others with such kindness, intentionality and dignity, and so when they sing a song like this, it’s from the very core of who they are.” The song encapsulates the mellow, tight, moving, intimate, and dynamic essence of the new release.
‘Give Thanks’ carries Anchor Hymns’ heart to comfort listeners with the reminder that the Lord is with us in questions and suffering, as well as in joys and victories. “I hope there are some musicians in churches who find these versions and have a blast playing them,” Osenga concludes.