Junior high: a time for first dances, first crushes, first dreams. It’s a time when what you realized the future you couldn’t wait for – whether it be high school aspirations or beyond – is within your reach more than you knew. Who knew that in eighth grade, a group of friends would embark on a first dream that sees no end in sight – their first band.
Anarbor is living proof that sometimes lofty childhood aspirations work out to be not so lofty after all. Since the fateful onset of the grade-school friendship between vocalist/bassist Slade Echeverria and guitarist Mike Kitlas, the band has been an actuality that has not only survived beyond the pitfalls of high school, but is thriving more than ever. “When we were in eighth grade, calling it a ‘career’ wasn’t even in the picture. The shows we played were mainly to just our friends and classmates,” the band says. “We weren’t very good at first but we stuck with it cause we loved playing music and playing together.” Seven years after their initiation, Anarbor is releasing their first full-length, The Words You Don’t Swallow, this spring on Hopeless Records.
Armed with the familiar soulful pop-rock that defined their breakthrough EP, Free Your Mind, a year ago, the new record ups the ante with more confidence, wit and sheen. When you consider that Anarbor signed a record deal while still in high school, and recorded this LP at the ripe age of 19, it’s imperative to know these are artists who have still only begun to scratch the surface. A band who have grown up together not only in their band roles and as young adults, but have grown with their fans as well.