I’ve got a few more albums left to review, this one I’ve had for a while but never got around to reviewing it. Better late than never though right? Today I’m reviewing Anberlin’s debut album Blueprints For The Black Market. The debut album was a strong debut for the group although not quite as strong as the group’s following albums. Blueprints has more of a pop-punk feel to it, far more evident than on any of the band’s other albums.
The album starts off fast and energetic with the band’s first single, Readyfuels. A great song overall, and a good choice for their first single, although personally I think that Glass To The Arson would have been a better choice. Foreign Language, although a fun and poppy song, doesn’t add very much to the album overall. The “do-do-do’s” can get a bit annoying after a while. The bridge for the song is a great one though “Where did we go wrong? / We need medication for this miscommunication. / Where did we go wrong? / Our conversation’s weakened” so the track isn’t a total loss.
Change The World (Lost Ones) is the album’s second single. Overall a very powerful song, and a great choice for a single. Up next is the song Cold War Transmissions, which I think is one of the album’s best tracks. How Stephen takes on the role of a Russian soldier in the Cold War is very creative, and really makes this a great song.
Now we’re up to Glass To The Arson, which is a powerful and rocking song. This song really deserved the coveted first single status. This is one of the most memorable songs on the album and I’m a big fan of the guitar work done on it, especially the solo. The Undeveloped Story is the next song on the album. It starts out strong and ends on a pleasing note. I’m a big fan of the lyrics on this one, especially this part of the intro “And if this is chaos / I think that I’m in love with clamor.” Plus, there’s a cowbell! You have to love that. Definitely a song worth checking out.
Autobahn is another fun song, but one that you could easily pass up. The track starts out well, but after that things seem to just got a bit flat though. We Dreamt In Heist is a great song, one of my personal favorites on the album. The song tells the story of a couple on the run:
And I know Mexico is south of here, beautiful this time of year / So let’s jump the border when the coast is clear / Salvation waits at ocean shore, we won’t have to lie no more / Don’t you worry baby I’ll be right here.
Next up on Blueprints is Anberlin’s cover of The Cure’s hit song, Love Song. Although I’m not a huge fan of the song, I think that the group did the song justice, putting together a a very well-done cover. As we come close to and end, we have the song Cadence, one of the band’s better known songs. Most people seem to like it a good deal, although I cannot seem to get into it.
Now the album closes with what I suppose could be considered the band’s first “epic song” as the final album songs have come to be known as. Most people think that the so-called epic songs started with Dance, Dance, Christa Paffgen, but I think that it started back on blueprints with Naive Orleans. In my opinion, this is one of Anberlin’s best songs yet, and by far the best song on the album.
In the song Stephen sings “And I finally found that life goes on without you / And the world still turns when you’re not around / And I finally found that all… / Your actions write the melodies / To the songs that we sing.” A great song of getting over past relationship, realizing that it’s not the end of the world. Naive Orleans has beautifully written lyrics, and is just a very catchy and melodic song overall.
Blueprints For The Black Market was a solid debut from the band. With its catchy lyrics and stunning vocals by Stephen Christian, Anberlin developed a concrete fan base from early on. Anberlin has certainly come a long way since the seemingly juvenile Black Market era. Overall I’d give this album three and a half stars out of five.
- Also, be sure to check out our review of Anberlin’s latest album, Dark is the Way, Light is a Place here!