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: The Overseer
Album: We Search, We Dig
Release Date: June 19, 2012
Label: Solid State Records

Hardcore and metal over the past few years has fallen into either two categories: creative or just more of the same. In 2012, while we've had a handful of good, even less great, releases in terms of heavy music, I've found myself dissatisfied and underwhelmed with the majority of it, following a year that had some of the best albums the genre has heard since its inception. One good place to turn that's still putting out great music is Solid State Records, with a slew of veterans and newer artists like To Speak of Wolves making big waves, but nearly halfway through the year, the label have unveiled what they're called their New Breed, a duo of their newest bands expected to usher in a new wave of music, "post-metalcore," for years to come; made up of Wolves At The Gate and The Overseer. We Search, We Dig has now been unleashed, the debut from The Overseer, being heralded as a mix of Underoath and Thrice, and the album quite easily hits the mark and goes beyond.

We Search, We Dig is chocked full of heavy ambience, met with both screaming and clean vocals, at times sounding more like dissonant rock than hardcore, really allowing for some creative breathing room. A lot of the darker guitar work of bands like Underoath is certainly present in songs such as the opener, "Secrets," and even some of the clean vocals and drumming sound eerily similar to a lot of the band's newer material, yet maintaining a distinguishing spirit that is equally raw and passionate. More of the cleaner, even indie rock-esque vibes can be heard in "Dredge" and especially "Amend," the latter of which boldly declares "We lost our direction, but love can show us the way back home." Even still, "Mendacious" echoes the likes of bands such as Hands or A Hope for Home, while keeping a good deal of the song instrumental.  The melodies of Thrice are even brought to mind on "Vultures" and "Estrange," is such ways that Dustin Kensrue is vividly mirrored vocally. The album also hits very hard lyrically, telling a story of searching for faith and delving into the beautiful mystery of the love of God for us even through all the failures and hardships life brings with it; "God, how can you love such a beast?"

Overall: Although clocking in at only over a half hour, We Search, We Dig from The Overseer has this sense of completeness, and makes me think the band accomplished what they set out to do; make quality music that doesn't fit inside the box of the stereotypical formulas of heavy music. The music fits so cohesively with the lyrics, and really flows with the times of pain, introspection, and honest questioning. If this album is just an indication of what is to come, The Overseer certainly have done something right, something that really does have the potential to get even better through time.

Rating: 8/10

Reviewed by Brooks Ginnan


  1. Secrets
  2. Dredge
  3. Amend
  4. Dreamer
  5. Mendacious
  6. Traitor
  7. Vulture
  8. Lost
  9. Estrange
  10. Absolve
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