Can you tell me when you say that the dial on anchor text just got cranked up, do you mean that keywords should be used in the anchor text or shouldn't be used a lot?
It appears to be working well is what I mean... whether you want to head down that road yourself is entirely up to you. I see a site a site sat at the top of page 2 with just over 100 links and over 50% of those are the target phrase.
These words aren't anywhere else within the site; url, text, filenames etc and the site has no pages what so ever. I doubt it will be there long but it's obviously the reason why it's there.
I seem to be seeing an increase across other verticals as well. This is not an isolated result.