Song of the Week: “Losing It All” by Anberlin

Something that I always love is getting some insight into the artistic process behind the music I enjoy, whether that’s piecing together the lyrics, the music itself, or the thought process behind it all.  That’s one of the reasons I find the Anberlin Lyrics blog, set up by Anberlin lead singer Stephen Christian, to be particularly interesting.  As the name suggests, it provides a transcription of lyrics from every Anberlin song from their LPs (meaning their B-sides are not included), but what it also provides is some background on each song.  Recently, I was looking again at the post on “Losing It All,” the eighth track from their final album, Lowborn, and found an interesting notation by Christian, which was that he knew the song would be the most underrated song on the album, if not their entire catalogue.

Given that Christian clarifies that some of the other band members didn’t even want it on the record, it’s understandable that he might have that impression; however, it strikes me as ironic, because “Losing It All” has always been one of my favorites from the album.  A melodic but energetic piece with hopeful lyrics about pushing through hard times, it’s driven by piano in the verses and guitar accompanies the piano in the choruses to fill out the energy and emotion.  Taken with the strong, consistent rhythm, the music comes together with the lyrics to express a sense of determination and a lack of willingness to give up; as Christian sings, “Hard work and harder times / as long as you say you are mine / we’ll see the other side together.”  In addition to a well-executed guitar solo, what really pulls the song together is Christian’s vocals, which are powerful and poignant as always, particularly his haunting execution in the final chorus as he questions, “Who are we without each other?”  It all truly expresses a sense of struggle, but simultaneously makes it clear that there is no end in sight, conveying a powerful message while being an enjoyable listening experience.

Without doing a thorough interviewing of Anberlin fans (or on a wider scale, everyone who’s listened to Lowborn), it can’t be stated whether or not Christian’s concern of it being underrated is accurate.  But from my perspective, it’s one of the strongest tracks on Lowborn, and I highly recommend that you give it a listen if you haven’t yet.

 

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