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 7: "The Wishing Well"

Lyrics: "A thunderstorm a distant shore, i’ve witnessed this before/patience was fleeting/if a thousand coins on the ocean floor would bring back love to me/i’ll wait forever/fill the sea with dreams of a wishing well/waves bring back my coins to me/drain the deep that teems with my empty shells/slaves of sand still call for me/i once had love to give/i once had hoped to live/the rarest stones will break my bones and golden salt stops my lungs/the perfect limbs and haunting eyes begs the seas: begin to rise/man: and when these delusions come to fruition/believe you me/i will strangle myself into nothingness/and be reborn from the dream of a blasphemous fool/in my sordid pelt of mold/i’ll earn back years to me/the god of a nightmare will fall as I take back what is…/devil: mine!/worthless swine enraptured by my vanity/your soul sank under the weight of gold you offered me/man: a waste of a life, squandered my heart until it rests upon the ocean floor barren/watching the light descend deeper and deeper/a deadening feeling starts to grow in my ribs/from where I lie, the waves overflow, with my blood/devil: from where I hide, the snakes overgrown, with your blood/man: where are my years/I’ll bleed dry by myself/i wish I was someone/devil: you wish you were someone else"

Explanation: “The Wishing Well” is quite different lyrically from every other song on the album. It is the only song on thegodmachine with no redemptive qualities. I wrote the lyrics to this song after watching the movie “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind.” I remember falling asleep and waking up at the end when the credits are rolling, and there was the darkest piano piece I’ve ever heard playing. It put me in such an odd and dark state of mind. I had never heard a piece so beautiful yet dissatisfied and brooding. It’s called “Going Crazy, Coast to Coast,” and it was written by Alex Wurman. If you can find it anywhere on the internet, give it a listen.

I ended up writing the lyrics and concept of “The Wishing Well” soon after. It is the story of a man flipping coins into the ocean and wishing that he was richer, stronger, better looking, happier, etc… He is completely unsatisfied with himself and what he has been given. The idea is that he regretted being himself to the point of losing his identity. The ending of the song is a conversation between the man and the devil, going back and forth over who is truly in control of the man’s life. It’s the classic idea of “selling your soul to the devil for personal gain.” In this case, it comes with a catch that is too much for the man to handle. With all of these regrets and wishes, the man’s life is torn apart. Even the devil sees him as delusional at the end; the man wishes to be important, rich, famous, and attractive because of the inner hatred for himself after wasting his life, and the devil reminds him, “no, you just want to be someone else, anybody but yourself.”

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