Building on Success
Posted August 14, 2007
Cities. Calcutta. Johannesburg. New York. Chicago. Seattle. Barcelona. Paris. Dublin. All major cities. All distinctly unique. All sharing traits that make them similar. Anberlin's latest, Cities, can be described by both of the previous statements.
Cities' soundscape shares enough in common with Blueprints for the Black Market and Never Take Friendship Personal (Anberlin's previous two releases) that fans and listeners will detect the comfort in the familiar. Stephen Christian's vocals continue to charge between passionate, emotion-drenched intonation and ragged, sonorous cries. Nathan Young's crisp and pulsating drum-work welded to Deon Rexroat's deliberate and solid bass lines provide the underpinnings that drive Cities from (Début) to (*Fin). Joseph Milligan's massive and distortion drenched guitars are incredible, without being overpowering.
Cities has a distinctively different rhythm from their prior, unrelentingly paced projects that justifiably earned Anberlin their emo/screamo tag. Make no mistake though, there is no lack of intensity on this CD. Tracks two though four and six through nine chew up ground at an unrelenting pace. It's when Stephen and Co. become more reflective that the band's maturity becomes evident. "The Unwinding Cable Car," "Inevitable" and "(*Fin)" demonstrate the band's willingness to experiment with their songwriting and delivery, as well as illustrate their musical growth and spiritual boldness.
With Cities, Anberlin continues to cement their reputation as a (musical) force to be reckoned with. They continue to successfully build on what's come before and are becoming a recognizable, permanent fixture on the modern-rock skyline. This album has the potential to be one of the best modern rock releases of 2007... at least from this fan's perspective.
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