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Anathema - We're Here Because We're Here CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

4.05 | 893 ratings

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3 stars In reviews of previous Anathema albums, I have talked of them having something of a transitional feeling, moving away from doom metal beginnings towards something as yet to be defined. With this, Anathema's 2010 release, one is left with the impression that this is the sound that everything was leading towards. Unfortunately for the band, I'm not altogether sure it entirely does them justice.

Before you panic too much, it still sounds like Anathema, and one still does not feel too awkward praising the band for the consistent quality of their output. It isn't a bad album (I'm not sure the Cavanagh brothers are capable of such a thing!) but it is disappointing compared to the quality of their previous handful of albums.

I think the problem is that, though the lyrical content does remain as bleak as ever, at least for a decent portion of the album, there is something oddly light and airy about their current sound. It's just a little too sunny.

Ironically, my favourite track on here is the beautifully romantic 'dreaming light', a delightfully atypical (for the band) exploration of the positive side of love and relationships. Not all human interaction, it seems, must be laced with a sense of isolation and loneliness. Perhaps, though, this track has the advantage of coming after the two more typically gloomy openers, and so has the sense of being a contrast. That this lighter mood continues for the next several tracks gives the album overall a slightly sickly-sweet feel, at least in contrast to the expectation of the emotions an Anathema album should produce.

That said, it is a grower. Given enough listens, I think the musicianship will shine enough in one's mind to make this a well-appreciated album. Similarly, the band deserves praise for showing that they're not an emotional one-trick pony.


stranded_starfish | 3/5 |


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