It’s that time in their musical career for Anatomy of Habit to change it up. If you’ve gotten to your fourth album and there’s little difference from your debut, you’re probably not doing something right. With a recently fleshed-out lineup comes a variation in sound as found through the band’s brand-new studio album, Black Openings. You can hear it today and, fortunately, it’s a quick follow-up to last year’s Even If It Takes A Lifetime, their first release in seven years.
Led by the distinguished Mark Solotroff, this album has a wholly different set of influences than any of its predecessors, thanks to these new members. Recorded again with longtime producer Sanford Parker, the addition of bassist and steel guitarist Sam Wagster (who replaced Kenny Rasmussen) was invaluable, thanks to his very different musical background. The riffs are heavier, particularly with the bass, thanks to the addition of Wagster, which really forced the band to adjust. Solotroff appreciated the new input, for it allowed him to push the guys into heavier territory, and he also relished the challenge of remoulding their approach.
With his thoughts on the new record, Solotroff shares:
“Releasing Black Openings in a timely manner, as a follow up to our previous album Even If It Takes A Lifetime, was an important milestone for us, as it demonstrates the momentum that we’re building as a band. It was critical to not just release a single album, after the long gap that trailed Ciphers + Axioms. Furthermore, knowing that we’re about 50 percent finished with our next album, we feel confident that we can maintain the forward push that we’ve been working hard to develop.
“It’s not just about releasing albums, although that feels really good. It has to do with the fact that this lineup has experienced consistency and fluidity in our ability to collaborate and to create new songs. We may still labour over them, to make sure they’re ready to perform and to record, but there are always one or two new ideas in development.
“As for Black Openings, I think it encapsulates exactly what Anatomy of Habit is all about. It contains the important balances that we strive for, between darker and brighter, heavier and lighter, slower and faster. Well, look, we’re not becoming a speed-metal band, but we can shift into a higher gear, from time to time. It’s always an exciting moment when we finally share our latest music with a broader audience. The opportunity to make new connections and to learn how people interpret our work, in their own way, is always rewarding.”
He concludes by saying:
“We hope that this album resonates with people who already listen to us, and we look forward to hearing from new listeners who discover us through Black Openings. As this album makes its way into the world, we’ll be working hard to wrap up the next one. What’s our next milestone? It’ll be an album with four songs. You heard about it here, first.”
As could be expected from Solotroff and the band at this point, Black Openings features some more elaborate themes, such as love and loss, the abstracted and vanishing self, and the various complexities within the creative process. It also considers the concept of obliteration, and the concept of the inner drive and what it does to keep pushing you forward. The lineup may have changed, but the power remains fully intact. Get ready to enjoy the experience, because this is music best enjoyed on a higher level.
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