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Anathema - Eternity CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

3.59 | 367 ratings

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3 stars Eternity ? 1996 (2.6/5 almost 2 stars) 9 ? Best Song: Angelica

Artistic growth used to mean so much more, I think, and this isn't me complaining about the 1990's, because if you take a quick stroll at my other review pages, some bands (like Ween) receive glowing praise from me. But back with a band like the Beatles, artistic growth from them was going from I Wanna Hold Your Hand, a cutesy pop song, to Happiness is a Warm Gun, which nearly defies explanation. Today, though, it seems like artistic growth implies beginning as an awful lot of noise, then whipping into gothic rock. Sure as hell I'd take good gothic rock over the best obnoxious trite noise, but I'd much rather the groups just take a crash course in songcraft. Eternity is akin to that latter form of artistic growth. I'd certainly take a relatively interesting, sharply psychedelic melancholy track in the flow of 'Angelica' over anything from the first two albums. I'll go ahead and say that I hate black metal more than hardcore gangster rap, and call it a night for many a young reader. And I still wonder. Yes, Eternity is an improvement, and I hesitate to overrate it. But that opening instrumental is pointless. They're still relying on style and aesthetic sound values over the actual direct notes they play.

The singing retains the quite-abrasive coldness on 'The Beloved', and it makes for a disconcerting experience. The riffs become thicker, more well-oiled and fitting of the big flair, and the bucket whacking has gone down to a minimum. These are not positives so much as loss of negatives. For no reason I can discern they cover a Roy Harper song. I like it for what it is, but gosh it's out of left field. Almost like a classic metal band covering a folk love ballad to Bob Dylan. It's all pessimistic and depressing in the silliest manner, but at least I can listen to it without going back to the medicine cabinet for another handful of ibuprofen.

Alitare | 3/5 |


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