Braid - Frame & Canvas (Cover Artwork)


Frame & Canvas (1998)


Ah, Braid. One of those bands that played during the glory days of "emo," also known as the mid-`90s. So many bands put out amazing albums during this time: Texas Is the Reason, Sunny Day Real Estate, Mineral, caP'n Jazz, the Promise Ring, just to name a few.

Frame & Canvas opens up with "The New Nathan Detroits," which is an excellent song to showcase Braid to new fans, and is a contender for their best song. Chris and Robert's vocals are separated during this song for the most part, really showing off each member's voice. Each song after is almost as good, all in different ways, and become instant classics. "Collect from Clark Kent" is a really fun song lyrically, as Robert sings about Superman being scared to fight crime. "A Dozen Roses" is another contender for Braid's best song, and is Robert's best ballad. "Urbana's Too Dark" is a personal favorite. "I Keep A Diary" is a lovely and solemn song, and an excellent way to close Braid's final album.

The album isn't perfect, however. Chris is limited to leading only two songs, and they are not his best either. The Age of Octeen, while also only having two Chris leads, has his best. I also think Frame & Canvas lacks the youthful energy that was so charming on The Age of Octeen. The version of "First Day Back" that appears on this album, while good, is not as good as the version found on Movie Music Vol. 1 as well.

Nonetheless, Frame & Canvas is a fantastic closing chapter for Braid, and they should be proud of it. It is a perfect starting point for new listeners, and will please fans of their earlier work. If you've been hesitating, hesitate no longer.