This album has been a long time coming for many many Anberlin and Copeland fans. August 4th will set the release for this long anticipated album by Anberlin front man Stephen Christian with some help from friend Aaron March (Copeland). The project is called Anchor and Braille and the debut album "Felt" will be released on Woodwater Records on August 4th. Woodwater was kind enough to send me the stream of the album weeks ago so i can get a full fledged introduction to this project. There is more to Christian than meets the eye.
Anchor & Braille was conceived when Christian realized that he had written many songs that he knew Anberlin could never use. The songs were said to have a different feel from Anberlin´s material and the lyrics were topics that he felt more personal, which he was not ready at that time to share on a mass platform. The album finds Christian relying on toned-down instruments such as keyboards, pianos, and acoustic guitars, however, the album utilizes a full band, with all songs written by Christian but produced and augmented with additional instrumentation by Marsh afterward.
This is a great album which basically reminds me of Copeland with Stephen singing. Christian definitely utilizes his Morrissey vocal influences more on this record than any Anberlin. The soft elegance from his voice is a perfect fit for these ambient angelic piano driven songs. the electronic instrumentation is felt upfront from Marsh who you can tell had a lot of input on the musical side reminiscent of the more recent Copeland work. There are a few tunes that could be Anberlin acoustic songs but the rest of the album is a deep departure from the pop/rock band. These songs do have many hooks to fill but are replaced by emotion and deep thought. "Blur" is one of favorite tracks on the record and will be an instant fan favorite. The piano and great vocal performance on this song is a sure delight. Other favorites include the Queen-like "Calm, Calm, Calm Yourself" and the eerie "Sleep. When We Die."
I believe this album will do great as fans from Anberlin will be intrigued as well as Copeland fans and the in between, Hopefully non Anberlin fans will check this out and realize Christian has more to offer. This album will open doors and i doubt this will be the only release. I find this album to be a lot bigger than anyone expects it to be. Great work Christian. A perfect album to put on and relax to. A+!