10 Songs, 35 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Wrapping up their career after 12 productive years, Anberlin turn Lowborn into a compelling final statement of artistic ambition and unshakable belief. Nearly all aspects of this Florida Christian pop/rock quintet’s protean sound can be heard in these tracks, engineered by longtime studio partners Aaron Sprinkle, Matt Goldman, and Aaron Marsh. The band’s sonic complexity—ranging from quietly introspective pieces to furious punk outbursts and sleek new wave excursions—are unified by thoughtfully fervent lyrics that don’t flinch at posing hard spiritual questions. Lead singer Stephen Christian tailors his vocal approach to the content of the tunes, raging with prophetic anger on “We Are Destroyer,” capturing an awe-struck reverence on “Atonement,” and embracing a higher love on “Losing It All.” Lowborn's music is even more diverse, surging with ‘80s-style pop elegance (“Stranger Ways”) before exploding with hardcore violence (“Dissenter”) and finally resting in contemplative glory (“Harbinger”). There’s an ultimate faith in redemption that shines through, giving Anberlin’s valedictory offering a healing, deeply humane glow.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Wrapping up their career after 12 productive years, Anberlin turn Lowborn into a compelling final statement of artistic ambition and unshakable belief. Nearly all aspects of this Florida Christian pop/rock quintet’s protean sound can be heard in these tracks, engineered by longtime studio partners Aaron Sprinkle, Matt Goldman, and Aaron Marsh. The band’s sonic complexity—ranging from quietly introspective pieces to furious punk outbursts and sleek new wave excursions—are unified by thoughtfully fervent lyrics that don’t flinch at posing hard spiritual questions. Lead singer Stephen Christian tailors his vocal approach to the content of the tunes, raging with prophetic anger on “We Are Destroyer,” capturing an awe-struck reverence on “Atonement,” and embracing a higher love on “Losing It All.” Lowborn's music is even more diverse, surging with ‘80s-style pop elegance (“Stranger Ways”) before exploding with hardcore violence (“Dissenter”) and finally resting in contemplative glory (“Harbinger”). There’s an ultimate faith in redemption that shines through, giving Anberlin’s valedictory offering a healing, deeply humane glow.

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About Anberlin

Hailing from Orlando, Florida, Anberlin formed from the ashes of various other area projects. Led by the soaring vocals of Stephen Christian, the positive-thinking Anberlin also included Joseph Milligan (guitar), Nathan Young (drums), Joey Bruce (guitar), and Deon Rexroat (bass), and presented an alternative pop/rock sound that, while inflected with the earnestness of emo, was closer to the mature stylings of Third Eye Blind. A five-song demo garnered Anberlin the attention of Seattle-based indie label Tooth & Nail, which signed the group in 2002. Blueprints for the Black Market marked the band's debut in May 2003, and Anberlin supported the album with shows alongside groups like Fall Out Boy and Story of the Year. Second guitarist Nathan Strayer later joined the lineup, and Anberlin returned in February 2005 with Never Take Friendship Personal. Their third record, Cities, appeared two years later and debuted at number 19 on the Billboard charts; soon after its release, however, Strayer made his exit and was replaced by former Acceptance guitarist Christian McAlhaney.

Released in 2008, New Surrender saw the retooled band joining the roster of Universal Republic Records and enlisting the help of Neal Avron, who had formerly produced records for Fall Out Boy, Yellowcard, and New Found Glory. In early 2010, Anberlin went into the studio with Grammy-winning producer Brendan O'Brien, and later that year released their fifth studio album, Dark Is the Way, Light Is a Place. The compilation Dancing Between the Fibers of Time: The Best of Anberlin's Tooth & Nail Years appeared two years later. Anberlin then released their sixth studio album, 2012's Vital, which featured a heavier rock and metal sound colored by some electronic flourishes. In 2014, Anberlin announced they were disbanding and released their seventh and final studio album, Lowborn. Released to coincide with the tenth anniversary of their second studio album, Never Take Friendship Personal, a live recording of a 2014 performance of the album in full, Never Take Friendship Personal: Live in New York City, was issued in 2015. ~ Johnny Loftus

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