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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Artist: Haste the Day
Album: Haste the Day vs. Haste the Day
Release Date: September 13, 2011
Label: Solid State Records

June 29, 2010 was a special day in Haste the Day history. Not only was it the release of their fifth (and what would become last) album Attack of the Wolf King, but it was also the day of their CD release show for said album at Rhino's in Bloomington, Indiana. However, this wasn't just any CD release show, this concert was Haste the Day vs Haste the Day, it would mark the first time that that original line-up played a show together since December 30, 2005. The show was recorded for a live DVD/CD combo.

There are some differences between the DVD and the CD portion of the album, one example is that the CD features a pre-recorded introduction whereas the DVD goes straight into the adrenalin pumping opening track "68". The place goes crazy as Stephen and the boys then follow it up with the crowd favorite "Pressure the Hinges". Stephen then asks the crowd if they want to hear Jimmy scream some stuff, and the crowd goes crazy. When the opening guitar riff of "Blue 42" starts and Jimmy walks out onto the stage the intensity is instantly cranked to 11. Fans were stage diving all over the place, and hanging from the rafters, the band actually had to stop so they could warn people not to hang from the rafters. The band and Jimmy sounded like they never stopped playing together, I was surprised at how tight they sounded. Stephen came out and helped finish off "Fallen" because Jimmy was lost amongst the fans. Stephen keeps the intensity going with "The Minor Prophets" before a hauntingly beautiful acoustic rendition of "Autumn". Jimmy comes back and sings "The Closest Thing to Closure" and "Walk On", and then Stephen takes over. Stephen settles into his role and shreds through the songs "White Collar", and "Needles".

One of the biggest differences between the DVD and CD is about 46 minutes into the DVD new drummer, Giuseppe Capolupo has a killer 90 second drum solo, which is not heard on the CD. Following this the new line-up plays two new songs from Attack of the Wolf King called "Travesty" and "Dogs like Vultures". Jimmy comes back out and talks about the history of Haste the Day and their love of our Lord. The original line-up plays "American Love" before Mike Murphy, the only original member left in the band, screams "Substance". The final track is "When Everything Falls" which Jimmy and Stephen scream the entire song together, it's a fitting end to such a special show and still gives me goosebumps.

Overall: The show was more-or-less a greatest hits showcase featuring four songs each from Burning Bridges and Pressure the Hinges, three songs from When Everything Falls, and two songs each from Dreamer and Attack of the Wolf King. The DVD quality was hit-or-miss, the three or four main camera views were pretty good, but the handheld views were blurry, out of focus, and kind of annoying, The sound quality of the DVD was very good for a low budget live album, except my constant complaint of too much fan interference, and providing of their own vocals. Also, the CD quality seems to be a touch lower than the DVD. With the hindsight that Haste the Day will never play a show together again this is a good way to relive it. Having been at the show, the combo pack doesn't do it justice, but do they ever? This was also my first time ever seeing the band with Stephen and he blew me away. His stage presence and interaction with the fans was phenomenal. This will get a higher rating just because the original songs are so awesome, and the live performances raised their intensity another notch.

Rating: 8/10

Reviewed by: Michael Small

1. 68
2. Pressure the Hinges
3. Blue 42
4. Fallen
5. The Minor Prophets
6. Autumn
7. The Closest Thing to Closure
8. Walk On
9. White Collar
10. Needles
11. Travesty
12. Dogs like Vultures
13. American Love
14. Substance
15. When Everything Falls

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