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UnRated Magazine Review: The Canopy Club - Champaign, IL - February 11, 2006
Band Concert Review
Anberlin No Longer Under The Canopy

Anberlin No Longer Under The Canopy

The Canopy Club - Champaign, IL - February 11, 2006

By Dan Hargesheimer

Anberlin is a band that is starting to be recognized for all they have to offer in the rock scene. They are acquiring fans all over the world, and they are emerging as a band to be reckoned with. As of a couple weeks ago, they had surpassed the 85,000 mark for copies sold of their new CD, 'Never Take Friendship Personal.' They definitely had a fair share of their loyal fans, as well as some people looking to experience their high-energy shows at the Canopy Club in Champaign on Saturday, February 11th . The Canopy is an ex-movie theater turned rock concert venue, and the acoustics are less than sufficient. But with Anberlin's amazing live shows, they used every bit of the grungy sound to their advantage. As lead singer Stephen Christian explained in a press release sent out last month, "this album is more raw, honest and hyperactive. Our goal was to come out with an album we're confident in and show our audience what they can expect live." They without a doubt, they captured the liveliness of their shows on their new CD…just ask the multitude of fans that were at the Canopy on Saturday.

During a month long winter trek after their sold-out headlining tour in Australia, they decided to help out the boys from Hawthorne Heights during the February stint of their tour. The crowd was pumped, and it was an amazing show by Anberlin from the start. While the music blared during the intermission between bands, the boys from Anberlin came out unannounced, sprinting into position, and start rockin 'Never Take Friendship Personal.' They never gave the venue the chance to shut off the recorded music, and for about the first 15 seconds of their opening song, they played right over it. The opening guitar riff over the intermission music could not have gotten the crowd more into the band right from the opening moment. They were their usual intense selves on stage, and the crowd reacted with all it had!

During their 7-song set, they managed to explore all the stage had to offer, while running around like maniacs. In the fifth song of the set, "Time and Confusion," Anberlin got the patrons of the Canopy to completely let loose. Everyone at the show was able to participate with them on the 'whoa-oh' parts of the song. The entire crowd joined in and raised their fists to the tune. Drummer Nathan Young never has a dull moment during their live shows; he's too busy head-banging to the beat while he keeps the pace for the rest of his band mates. While acknowledging the kids in the front couple rows, Christian let a few of them help sing some lyrics to a few songs. The band made sure to visit the tops of almost every speaker, and during the last song of the evening for them, "Paperthin Hymn," Christian had a group in the front of the crowd brace him up so that he could be part of the mayhem, and sing out over the venue. The overall show was a little heavy on the new CD, but that's what the crowd has been embracing lately, so I don't blame them for taking that road.

It was the second time in a couple of months that I have experienced their live shows, and it is an experience not to be missed. They are definitely on the up and up, especially now that they have announced their headlining Tooth & Nail Tour starting in March. They have sold-out shows all over the world, and if you don't see them sometime soon in a smaller venue, you may very well be going to larger arenas to see them in the near future! Go check them out for their powerful and passionate live shows…you won't be disappointed!

Set List:

  1. Never Take Friendship Persona
  2. The Feel Good Drag
  3. A Day Late
  4. Ready Fuels
  5. Time & Confusion
  6. The Runaways
  7. Paperthin Hymn


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