Thursday, January 13, 2011

The Letter Black: Hanging On By A Thread Review

The Letter Black is "breaking the silence" with their latest album Hanging On By A Thread. Having released the Breaking the Silence EP in 2009, the group gives us their first full-length project on Tooth&Nail records, featuring three of the popular songs from the original EP. Fronted by female rocker, Sarah Anthony, The Letter Black has much to say on Hanging on By A Thread, and their debut full-length project was a great way to do just that.

Hanging On By A Thread begins with the high-energy rocker "Fire With Fire," probably the best track on The Letter Black's latest release, and definitely one of the best rock songs I have heard in a while, speaking of fighting "fire with fire" with someone where "it always has to be an eye for an eye/ justice remains the one and only desire/ fighting fire with fire." Following is "Invisible," co-written with Trevor McNevan of Thousand Foot Krutch, beginning with pounding drums and a full blast of rock, invisible speaks of how we can't see God, but we know he exists: "Every day I crave the touch of Your embrace/ but now I see what You mean to me."

Just when you are expecting things to slow down a bit, again comes in another rocker, The Letter Black's first radio single, "Hanging On By A Thread," speaking of hanging on to every Word of God, asking Him to save us from losing ourself. For me, this was the radio single that won me over to the Letter Black, and I still believe that it is one of the best tracks off this album. Another radio single follows with "Believe" backed up by a strong sound of strings and full-blast guitars. I personally found the music video to accentuate my love for this track, speaking of the freedom that comes from believing in what we don't see and "putting our faith in the unknown." One highlight of this track, and certainly the rest on this album was the male vocals from Sarah's husband Mark, and the little rocking duet they perform on the chorus.

Personally, I found "There'll Come A Day" just a bit confusing, but I believe it was a song directed to someone who is in heaven now, and that the writer hopes to see again: "There'll come a day when I can hold you and say it's forever/ There'll come a day when these broken lives fade back together/ there'll come a day when we don't feel like this/ I'll find my way..." Both this track and "My Disease" do not slow things down, so far making for a totally enjoyable rock album. "My Disease" speaks to someone who was caused much hurt and pain, and rolls smoothly into "I'm Just Fine," speaking of forgetting "all the things you said/ I keep coming back to what you did/ I'm letting go/ I'm letting you know I"m just fine without you."

"Best of Me" slows things down just a touch, to a mostly string track speaking about giving your best. I couldn't easily tell if it was written to God or to Sarah's husband, but at first listen, I took it to be written to God. "All I Want" gets things rolling again, and is off to the same start musically as "My Disease" and "I'm Just Fine" speaking to someone who "accused me when I've done nothing wrong." "Moving On," from the original EP, speaks of moving on from the pain and choosing to forget about the hurt that was caused.

"More to This" highlights many horrible occurances that happen these days, such as people losing their jobs, homelessness, and highschool shootings, and offers the hope that we are the ones who bring the change. Although it slows things down a touch, it is certainly welcome on this album from The Letter Black. "Care Too Much" sounds a little too similar to "Moving On" both lyrically and musically, but I still enjoyed the track. Finally, Hanging On by A Thread opens with a totally enjoyable grunge rock track with female screaming, opening the "revolution" message about taking back your life and dreams. Interestingly, as most rock albums have a slower track at the end making it seem like a good ending to the album, the rock ending makes you want to press play all over again!

The Letter Black's Hanging on by a Thread was completely enjoyable from track one all the way to the end. Every song rocks, and many of the songs give very encouraging and inspiring messages. I highly recommend this album to any hard rock fan, especially to those that enjoy Disciple, Kutless, Skillet, and RED. This album is awesome!

Rating: 5/5

Track listing:
1. Fire With Fire
2. Invisible
3. Hanging On By A Thread
4. Believe
5. There'll Come A Day
6. My Disease
7. I'm Just Fine
8. Best of Me
9. All I Want
10. Moving On
11. More to This
12. Care too Much
13. Wounded


  1. I LOVE this album. I think my favorite song is "Believe."

  2. Great review! The Letter Black is awesome.


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