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2 stars Reasonably good?

It was quite a surprise for me when I stumbled a few days ago into Anacrusis on PA. Anacrusis is a band whose music I have known for years now, but I didn't expect them to turn up at PA. Anacrusis started of as a band much in the vein of Slayer on their debut "Show No Mercy". In a span of 5 years they recorded 4 studio albums and their musical style developed from thrash into a unique kind of industrial prog metal. What I always liked about Anacrusis (besides their music) was their endearing attitude towards their fans. A good example of this is their official home page. Here you can still find and legally download all of their studio albums, 3 demo's and 3 live concert registrations. With this first PA-review of their album "Reason" I like to pay them the respect they surely deserve.
Reason is Anacrusis' second album on which they took quite a step forward from stereotyped thrash to a more adventurous kind of thrash. However their best was yet to come!

1) Stop Me [7/10]
2) Terrified [5/10]
3) Not Forgotten [6/10]
4) Wrong [6/10]
5) Silent Crime [5/10]
6) Misshapen Intent [5/10]
7) Afraid To Feel [6/10]
8) Child Inside [6/10]
9) Vital [7/10]
10) Quick To Doubt [5/10]
11) Killing My Mind [6/10]
12) Injustice [5/10]

What I like about this album is the way heavy thrash parts are blended with dreamy interludes. However the vocals are not Anacrusis' greatest asset here. Kenn Nardi (the singer) puts a lot of variety in the changing moods he tries to express. Unfortunately his vocal range is a bit limited and is not equal to the musicianship displayed here. I can understand that some listeners might find the "screaming" parts quite annoying.
IMO "Reason" is a decent, but fans-only album. I would recommend it to fans of prog metal with a thrashy edge. If you're looking for the best introduction to Anacrusis' music, than I would recommend first listening to their third album. As this album - Manic Impressions - is even more catchy, has a much better production and it seems that Anacrusis finally "found" the sound they were striving for.

Album rating: 53% = 2 stars

Report this review (#115350)
Posted Friday, March 16, 2007 | Review Permalink
Easy Livin
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars Stop me (please!)

Two years after releasing their self financed debut, Anacrusis returned to the studio to record this follow up. In the band's own words, "Reason" represents the band "finding their identity". Unlike the first album, which was made up of old and new material, "Reason" started with a blank sheet, and was built up from there.

Once again in the band's own words, the last two songs written for the album "Stop Me" and "Afraid To Feel" formed the "blueprint" for what was to follow on subsequent releases. That said, they themselves admit that these tracks are flawed, and did not turn out as intended. The other tracks here tend to be more in line with what went before on the debut.

The album opens with the aforementioned "Stop me", a pounding, heavy 6 minute riff driven number with sudden soft passages and mood changes. It is certainly the band's most adventurous arrangement to date, but unfortunately the overall impression is rather muddled. "Afraid to feel" follows a similar style, but is heavier and more intense.

While, as mentioned, the majority of the tracks fall into line with the style adopted on the band's debut, there is a slight degree of refinement here. We still have the heavy lead guitar riffs and solos, but the songs themselves do not tend to have the same dark tones (especially in the titles!).

Overall, I must admit I found this release rather disappointing after the raw excitement of the band's debut. The recording quality has certainly improved, but the fact that this was another rushed effort is rather apparent. Best avoided.

Report this review (#172857)
Posted Monday, June 2, 2008 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Reason is the second studio album from American progressive metal band Anacrusis. Their debut album called Suffering Hour was a raw thrash metal album with no progressive tendencies whatsoever, but with Reason the band shows us a more sophisticated side of themselves.

The music is still basically old school thrash metal ( Slayer, Metallica, Kreator, Sodom, Destruction, Testament, Xentrix, Vio-Lence and Forbidden just to mention a few) and IMO of the boring kind. What makes the music a bit out of the ordinary is the acoustic parts which appear in some songs. It kind of adds a progressive touch to the songs. The two longest songs on the album the opener Stop Me and Afraid to Feel are by far the most innovative songs here. The rest more or less sounds like most of the songs from Suffering Hour.

The musicianship is somewhat doubtful here. There is nothing wrong with the guitar and bass playing. Pretty well played thrash metal riffing, but the vocals from Kenn Nardi are not very good and his weird screams donīt fit the music very well. The terrible eighties drums are the worst part here though. Mike Owen does not know the word subtle. Everything is played loud and without much consideration for the other parts of the music. His playing really ruins the music IMO.

The production is terrible. The drums are too loud and the overall sound just comes out sounding weak and powerless. This was a common problem for many eighties thrash metal bands though.

Reason is not much better than Suffering Hour really, but we are introduced to the more innovative side of Anacrusis music and thatīs a plus in my book. Reason doesnīt deserve much more than a 1 star rating, but as I do respect the urge to make innovative music Iīll give Reason 2 stars. Iīm stretching though and I wonīt recommend this album to anyone.

Report this review (#187417)
Posted Thursday, October 30, 2008 | Review Permalink
2 stars Anacrusis is a band I did not expect to find in ProgArchives. But after listening to this album, I understand their inclusion here.

Anacrusis has returned with some horrendous bad artwork, but with some decent music. Music in the landscape between thrash metal and hard core. This type of music was called Crossover (not to be confused with the ProgArchives genre called Crossover) when I was a young man. Cryptic Slaughter and Anacrusis among the purveyors of this genre. This was back in the early 1990s. Memories, memories, memories.........

The music on this album is pretty decent. It is pretty good when the tempo is slowed down a bit. I find the more faster, chugging guitar riffs pretty uninspiring and dull. Something which there is far too much of on this album. The shrieking vocals too is pretty tiring and not good at all. Well, they wanted to make a crossover album out of it and that is what they have made. There is some good ideas here they have underdeveloped. I can understand why this band does not rate this album and why it has been re-recorded again (I believe).

This is pretty decent crossover, but nothing more. Pass me the salt and pepper please.

2 stars

Report this review (#293569)
Posted Friday, August 6, 2010 | Review Permalink
5 stars Anacrusis is a late eighties trash metal band and one of the better ones. While the early trash metal giants (Metallica, Slayer, Anthrax) kept on repeating one another, some of the later trash metal bands took the trash movement to an higher level. Voivod and Anacrusis brought some progressive elements into the trash metal area, whereby Voivod became famous because of their Captain Beefheartesque avant garde elements, Anacrusis took a different path. In the same line as Voivod, Anacrusis prevented endless repeating of riffs, what became an element of most trashers including Metallica. Anacrusis is a very dynamic band, which switches to -poplike- sangmelodies to anxiousness or agressiveness and sometimes they'll do it in one melodic line!

The bass playes an important role in Anacrusis, and plays more on the foreground than in most other trash metalbands. The effect is amore complex sound. The guitarriffs sounds sometimes a bit naieve, but I like this chaotic sound.

I'm quiet a fan of the sang of Kenn Nardi. He uses his voice in a lot of different styles. Sometimes he uses high screams, low growls, clean sanglines and the most fantastic element is that he changes his way so often. This constantly changing in singing/ shouting / growling effects in a very complex emotional musical element. Understanding it is like understanding a psychophrenic patient. This part of this music is one of the key elements why Anacrusis feels complex.

Another part of the complexity is the constantly changing of heaviness. As I allready sad, Anacrusis is a very dynamic band. It changes from slow riffs to fast riffs and from clean guitars to distortion in very small time periods. This completes the changing of vocalstyls.

Reason is a very entertaining record wich has in my opinions no real weak points, except it's cover. This record is one of the few trash metal record (if not the only) I can listen seven days a weak without getting bored about it. By having sad that I conclude that this is without doubt a masterpiece of trash metal. Because of it's technical highstanding qualities it wouldn't suit ill in a progressive metal collection.

Report this review (#477397)
Posted Wednesday, July 6, 2011 | Review Permalink

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