Artist Of The Week - Anchor & Braille

It's been about three years since we've gotten an album from Anchor & Braille, the indie side project of Anberlin's Stephen Christian, but this week, on July 31st, the band's sophomore album will be released. The Quiet Life is a collection of haunting melodies and catchy percussion, certainly a maturation of sound since 2009's Felt. The Quiet Life is available now in stores and online through Tooth & Nail Records.


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Opposition - EP

Artist: Altars
Album: Opposition
Release Date: July 19, 2011
Label: Strike First Records

Altars (formerly known as Monuments) is a metallic hardcore band hailing from Colorado Springs, CO, and are one of the newest members to the Strike First Records family. Altars are a band that really take you by surprise, since they have only been together for a short while, but the music they create make them sound like metal/hardcore veterans. Simply put, Altars knows what they are doing, and they do not disappoint.

The Opposition EP starts off with the instrumental title track. From the get go, you already find yourself banging your head, tapping your feet, and chanting along "We are the opposition!" over and over. The track then fades into a brutal breakdown to start off "Advocate" (featuring Chad Ruhlig of Legend). You quickly learn that vocalist Mike Searle has some pipes. He has great depth and control, and a good variation in vocal style to keep things interesting. The next track is "Severance," which has some of my favorite lyrics. Throughout the album, you start to notice the overall theme of staying positive, and looking to the hope that lies ahead for all of us.

"The Struggler" has a great part in it where the instrumentals change to a more melodic sound, and the vocals go from screaming to more of a yell. The first time I heard it, it gave me chills. "Heresy" is another great track that really focuses on finding and seeking out hope, and has one of the biggest breakdowns on Oppositions. I also think this song really showcases the guitar work of Canaan Smith and Seth Munson. Finally, the closing track, "Volition," is a great example of how to properly close out an album, and I feel as the lyrics "He gave His life, so give Him yours" really wrap up what this album is all about.

Overall: Altars have released a great first album, and I only see them getting better from here on out. I loved the production on Opposition, and thought that it really made a difference on the overall sound. My only complaint is that it ended too soon, but I guess that is what you get with an EP. I think anybody who is a fan of metallic hardcore filled with positivity, hope, and faith will be a fan of this band. I'm looking forward to hearing more from these guys, and I would be surprised if this EP doesn't make it on my end of the year list.

Rating: 9/10

Recommended Tracks: "Advocate," "Heresy," and "Volition"

Reviewed by Tabor Brown

  1. Opposition
  2. Advocate
  3. Severance
  4. The Struggler
  5. Heresy
  6. Volition
(Buy Here)

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1 comment:

  1. good work Tabor! i agree about the production, the bottom-end is very thick sounding, giving those guitars some real heaviness.