Felt is the debut album from Anchor & Braille, which is more or less the solo project of Anberlin front-man Stephen Christian. Christian takes this opportunity to step away from Anberlin’s soaring, fast-paced anthems and tone things down a little, exploring a handful of more delicate lyrical subjects that aren’t expressed through Anberlin.
The acoustic-turned-electric opener Rust sets the mood perfectly with some fantastic drum work and some conservative strings and horns to compliment Christian’s plea – “Take me anywhere/wherever you’re going/take me anywhere/‘cause nobody wants me here.” Songs like Summer Tongues and Wedding/Funeral find him slipping effortlessly in and out of his pitch-perfect falsetto and delivering some of the most poignant, emotional lyrics he’s ever written.
Much of the album’s instrumentation comes courtesy of producer Aaron Marsh, whose day job is fronting the soft-rock band Copeland. Although this album isn’t quite as easy to digest as Christian’s work in Anberlin and begs for repeated listens and close attention to detail, the devoted listener will be rewarded greatly.
It takes talent to write a song called Forget Love, I Just Want You to Make Sense to Me Tonight without coming off as super-cheesy, but Stephen Christian knows what he’s doing, and he proves it with Felt.