Album Review: “Vital” by Anberlin

bill bodkin reviews the band’s latest effort…

They say ignorance is bliss, but sometimes ignorance is just plain silly.

And this perfectly captures my feelings after listening to Anberlin’s new record Vital.

For some reason and don’t ask me why, but I always lumped Anberlin into that whiny, sleeved tattooed emo rock that flooded the airwaves of the early 00s. You know, the ones that always sang about getting dumped by their girlfriend, who’s hair was spikier than a porcupine and were usually very immature but then get really intense and serious later in life.

So it was with a little trepidation that I went into my listening experience of Vital. Luckily, by the as the track finished playing, the veil of ignorance had been lifted from my eyes and I was finally introduced to who Anberlin really was — a super tight rock outfit that knows how to bring the heavy yet keep the melody.

Stephen Christian, the band’s lead singer, really is the driving force of this record. His vocals are magnificent as they can soar to the highest of heights yet never straying into the lands of 80s hair metal. He has a passion in his voice that really jumps off the album and grabs you.

However what really got me about this record was just how much these guys can really rock. I mean we’re talking sweaty, throw a punch at a dude type of rock. Not that these guys would do that, I hear they’re actually really nice. But you get my meaning. They really have this hard, heavy, driving sound that wouldn’t be lost on those who have their ears glued to hard rock radio formats around the country.

Vital by Anberlin is probably one of the more solid records you’re going to hear in 2012. It’s got sublime melodies, great hooks and it will leave you with a feeling that only some rock ‘n’ roll power chords can leave you with. And that my friends, is something sorely missed in today’s scene.

Bill Bodkin is the owner, editor-in-chief and co-founder of Pop Break. Most importantly, however, he is the proud father of a beautiful daughter, Sophie. He can be seen regularly on the site reviewing The Walking Dead, Doctor Who, and is the host of the site's podcast, The BreakCast. He is a graduate of Rutgers University with a degree in Journalism & English. Follow him on Twitter: @BodkinWrites