Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Album Review - Anata: “The Conductors Departure”

Describing the sound of Anata can be difficult, as death metal has become such a broad term. With all the variations on the genre, simply labelling something as death metal is no longer enough.

Anata contains many melodies roaming up and down the guitar neck, and sometimes in some strange time signatures. Not quite poppy enough to fit with your typical melodic death metal bands, not quite nasty enough for Suffocation to use. These roaming melodies feature lots of interplay between the two guitarists, with harmonies moving in and out, to landing on some intentionally dissonant harmonizations, to some delayed style effects. Other twin guitar attacks are used as well, but not quite to the extent of the aforementioned styles. Throw all that on top of many double bass and blast beat drums and harsh vocals, and Anata gives us a pretty unique package.

It’s these same roaming melodies also pose a problem. Many feel quickly whipped up. While the experimentation with guitar interplay on said melodies afterwards does provide a good deal of entertainment, the base melodies seem to have little substance themselves. Only a few songs feature something resembling a good hooking melody within the guitar lines. Some of the songs don’t do a very good job of building to a crescendo with the structure either, sometimes feeling like a mere collection of said roaming melodies.

All those downsides offer only a portion of detriment though. The intensity of the music and the general concept and originality lift "The Conductors Departure" out of tedium.


Earache Records


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