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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Day 8: "My Horses Are Many"

Lyrics: "This is what it’s like to be on fire burning through the coals/what a way to release this fury and be consumed/a false prophet and a terrible liar/trading money for souls/abomination of a broad horizon/you sold them for a frail mansion/it’s nothing but dust/your recompense and tongue will be fed down your throat/oh you’d topple the pillars of a church to make yourself a god/when you speak it’s a dead language/forfeit the grace you never preach/limb for a limb/you’ll be torn to shreds/eye for an eye/you’ll be torn to shreds/throw it down like you never want to see it again/if this is a slippery slope you’re at the bottom of the ditch/take advantage of the children yet you call yourself a man/if this is a slippery slope you’re at the bottom of the ditch/headlong"

Explanation: “My Horses Are Many” is about my experience as a kid when my family moved to Texas and was looking for a church to attend. I have had a lot of awful experiences at church, and this song is about just a handful of them. I remember distinctly going to a huge church when I was 6. In the Sunday school class, I remember seeing every kid at the end of the lesson get up and move in a single file line towards the altar. Kid after kid handed the preschool-pastor money, change, or even a check that their parents had obviously given them. As a little kid, I didn’t really understand what I was seeing until years later, but I remember feeling embarrassed because I had nothing to give and I was getting closer and closer to the end of the line. When it was my turn in front of the preschool pastor, I said “I’m sorry, but you can have my grapes” out of embarrassment, handed him the last of couple of grapes that I had been eating during the lesson, and then started crying when I saw the pastor’s look of disapproval. The line in the song, “take advantage of the children yet you call yourself a man” is NOT about those grapes that I regret giving up (haha), but the embarrassment, the brainwashing, and the peer pressure that churches use. I have nothing against tithing, but making the children in your Sunday school class get in a single file line and make it a habit of giving money at an early age is a bit of a disturbing tactic to me.  This same thing happened at a different church I attended years later, only the entire congregation was in a single file line dropping money into a golden altar in front of the stage. That was after the pastor preached “tithe or you aren’t right with God” for an entire year. Bible belt America’s leaders will have some serious explaining to do on judgment day. Every shepherd will be held accountable for his flock. This song is me reacting honestly to these experiences.

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