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ANEKDOTEN

Heavy Prog • Sweden


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Anekdoten biography
In the early 90s a wave of King Crimson inspired new progrock bands emerged in Scandinavia. One of the first was four piece formation Anekdoten from Sweden and they are still alive and progging, unlike their promising contemporaries Anglagard and Landberk.

Anekdoten their roots are in 1990 when Nicklas Berg (guitar and Mellotron) and Jan Erik Liljestrom (bass and vocals) decide to found a band to make progressive rock music. They name the band King Edward and the musicians start to rehearse, soon accompanied by percussionist Peter Nordin. Their repertoire consists of songs from King Crimson. In 1990 Anna Sofi Dahlberg joins King Edward, this inspires them to intensify their rehearsals, to write own compositions, to rename the band into Anekdoten and to release two demo-tapes under their new name in 1991 and 1992. With the second demo things start to roll for Anekdoten because several Skandinavian progressive rock labels show their attention and invite the band to make a CD on their label. But the band prefers to release their debut album entitled Vemod on their own label in the Spring of 1993. The press hails the obviously KING CRIMSON inspired and Mellotron drenched compositions. A strong point in the music from Anekdoten is the hugh tension between the mellow, often melancholical climates and the dynamic parts delivering ROBERT FRIPP-inspired howling electric guitar, an aggressive and propulsive bass and splendid drumwork.

In 1994 Anekdoten starts a worldwide tour (including Sweden, Norway, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, USA and Canada) with an acclaimed performance on the annual USA progressive rock festival Progfest as their absolute highlight. Some tracks from that treat of a concert are present on the "Nearfest 1994" double live CD and video.

Late 1995 Anekdoten releases their eagerly awaited second album entitled "Nucleus", the band succeeds to sound more original and is on the way to develop an own musical identity.

The next year Anekdoten tours around the same big European countries, but Japan turns out to be by far the most important country in which they've played and impressed a lot (after Sweden). Vemod soon gets re-released, followed by a mini-CD called "Live EP". Three shows the band performed in Japan, in 1997, lead to the release of an important double CD entitled "Official Bootleg - Live in Japan" (including five previously unreleased tracks), on year later. Tours reach, in the same year, the full North American...
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From WithinFrom Within
Import
Musea 1999
Audio CD$17.25
$6.00 (used)
A Time Of DayA Time Of Day
Import
Musea 2007
Audio CD$18.89
$10.99 (used)
GravityGravity
Import
Musea 2003
Audio CD$16.68
$10.10 (used)
NucleusNucleus
Remastered · Import
Musea 1995
Audio CD$17.53
$17.80 (used)
VemodVemod
Musea/Virta 1993
Audio CD$13.76 (used)
ChaptersChapters
Remastered
Kscope 2009
Audio CD$10.41
$9.28 (used)
From WithinFrom Within
Musea 2003
Audio CD$21.99
$29.00 (used)
Live in JapanLive in Japan
Import
Imports 2005
Audio CD$36.99
$27.74 (used)
GravityGravity
Anekdoten
Audio CD$29.15
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ANEKDOTEN discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

ANEKDOTEN top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.00 | 257 ratings
Vemod
1993
4.02 | 262 ratings
Nucleus
1995
4.14 | 271 ratings
From Within
1999
3.82 | 210 ratings
Gravity
2003
3.94 | 266 ratings
A Time Of Day
2007

ANEKDOTEN Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.76 | 20 ratings
Live
1997
4.17 | 50 ratings
Official Bootleg : Live In Japan
1998
4.49 | 62 ratings
Waking The Dead - Live In Japan 2005
2005

ANEKDOTEN Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

ANEKDOTEN Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.01 | 50 ratings
Chapters
2009

ANEKDOTEN Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

ANEKDOTEN Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Vemod by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1993
4.00 | 257 ratings

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Vemod
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by EMLonergan

3 stars This is another one of those albums that would have been absolutely awesome if it weren't for the vocals!! The instrumentals in this album are awe inspiring and send shivers down any spines. The heavy instrumental segments are the heaviest you can get without actually venturing into Metal, which is quite the achievement. The brooding atmospheric segments are reminiscent of King Crimson's best gentle moments mixed with an extra tinge of terror. Somehow, unfortunately, the vocals manage to ruin it for me. They are incompetent and drag along for way to long, and sounds rather uninspired. That's not to speak for the lyrics, which are pretty decent. If only the vocals were either cut out entirely, this would be an absolute masterpiece!

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 A Time Of Day by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.94 | 266 ratings

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A Time Of Day
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by EMLonergan

4 stars This album marks a departure from Anekdoten's traditional Red-era King Crimson-esque sound, making it's way into territory traversed by Radiohead and Muse. Despite distancing themselves from progressive territory, Anekdoten manages to develop a new, more mature personality. Instrumentally speaking, this album is far less complex than its predecessors, given the lack of strange time signatures. Emotionally speaking the band has lifted itself away from the deep, dark, suicidal dismay into a more hopeful melancholy, particularly evident in the vocal melodies. Notably, the vocals are immensely better quality than previous Anekdoten releases. The advantages here are the development of a distinct emotional richness, while sacrificing instrumental complexity. This certainly will not appeal to hard head Red-era King Crimson fans, but will certainly appeal to those who enjoy King Crimson's more emotional side such as in 'Book of Saturday'.

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 From Within by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1999
4.14 | 271 ratings

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From Within
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Anekdoten's From Within finds the band still ploughing the old mid-1970s King Crimson furrow which serves as the basis for their sound. However, whereas I was initially impressed with their first two albums but became disillusioned with them over time, at first I was unimpressed with From Within but I have found that it has grown on me. There's a subtlety and delicacy on display here, from the title track onwards, which sees Anekdoten move towards a more distinctive and individual identity for themselves, which makes the album a richer and deeper prospect than their previous work. The opening number, with its crashing intro and its fragile lyrics, grabs the listener's attention instantly and the album doesn't let go for its entire running time.

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 From Within by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1999
4.14 | 271 ratings

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From Within
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by Memo_anathemo

5 stars In 1999, the Swedish band ANEKDOTEN, led by Niklas Barker, created one of the most impressive albums in progressive rock: FROM WITHIN. This album is full of mellotron sound, and impressive bass lines, that together with the guitar, drums and other keyboard instruments, such as a hammond organ, this album is consistent, powerful, mesmerizing. All the songs have Anekdoten's essence that has maintained from the very first album, and Barker's voice, which sounds a bit different to an average singer gives the final touch to the wonderful creations shown in here. The opening track "From Within" is really amazing with the excellent drum nuances, good guitar riff and the fantastic bass sound; from this moment and on, all the songs have a high level, and the last track "For Someone" is an excellent acoustic conclusion for an album that takes you to a rollercoaster of emotive and powerful music!

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 Gravity by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.82 | 210 ratings

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Gravity
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by Memo_anathemo

5 stars I know Vemod, Nucleus and From Within are people's favorite albums of the Swedish band ANEKDOTEN., they are mine as well; however, GRAVITY is my special album. I love every single song in this album, and my top favorite is Ricochet, it is kind of emotional for me. The rest of the album ranges from peaceful and relaxing songs to heavier and proggier sounds. This album is the most accessible of the first 4, maybe that is why people think it is not the best, but let me tell you something, ANEKDOTEN's albums deserve a rating of 5 stars, because they are far better than many other albums of other bands.

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 Vemod by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1993
4.00 | 257 ratings

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Vemod
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by LinusW
Special Collaborator Italian Prog Specialist

3 stars King Crimson comparisons abound for Anekdoten's debut album Vemod and rather than presenting a dissenting view, I will just join the choir on this one.

Just about everything familiar, alien, loved or loathed from (primarily) ca.-Red era King Crimson can be found on Vemod: keen dynamic awareness and exploitation of the massive power in jumping from the calm to the chaotic in wild abandon, throwing out more minimal atmospheric focus for powerful, musically busy aggression by the flick of a switch along the way. The similarities do of course not end there, but continue all the way down to the sound of the instruments. Along the way you will recognize the unstable, neurotic melodies and slight atonality and chromaticism of Fripp (coupled with the equally familiar angular, uncompromising riffs), the muscular, distorted and dominant bass lines, soaring Mellotron and a mix of forceful and dexterous drumming. Even the moods come across as rehashed: twitchy, neurotic melancholy, sad reflectiveness, a ray of wondrous light in the midst of aching sorrow. Plain old fun if you're into the brooding or dark side of stuff! Take any of those feelings, transport it by a dense, ominous buildup of slightly malevolent sounds and let it explode in a cathartic eruption of frustrated, crashing instrumental thunder.

But it isn't identical. Out goes the violin, in comes the cello. Not the most dramatic of changes, but it definitely brings more fullness to the soundscape. However, the major differences, as I see them, are two. Or possibly three. Because when peaking in intensity, there's a streak of more hard-hitting aggression and speed to the music, making it feel more contemporary metal or heavy rock. It's just a stronger crossover into that world than King Crimson ever tried to accomplish; more riff-driven and direct, rawer and more "honestly" energetic, if that makes sense to you. Some of the grittier parts are sometimes spectacularly heavy, but also rather fast and rhythmically bouncy. Funnily enough, the other main difference I would identify is found in the very opposite end of the music. When in mellower territories, there's a streak of vulnerability and sensitivity to both the clean, precise vocal lines (sometimes even lacking in power) and melodies I don't really associate with King Crimson, something that could be described (perhaps wrongly) as a touch of a more ethereal, introverted indie/alternative-influence. The addition of piano fleshes out these bits and serves as an excellent indicator of the third difference: a will to enrich the arrangements, a search for more melodious fullness ( even mildness) and a decidedly more organic and agile approach to the compositions than the mid-70s-King Crimson, who despite even improvisation can come across as a bit formal and disciplined (perhaps even academical) to this reviewer.

I thoroughly enjoy Vemod, but think the band paid just a bit to much tribute to their apparent heroes here. There is individuality to be sure, but it's a bit underdeveloped and raw at this point, and the band would go on to make more interesting albums later. And sadly, things tend to stay a bit same-old-same-old as well, with songs morphing into each other at a bit too high a rate. This is made even more obvious due to the similarity of mood throughout the album, causing just a bit of listening-fatigue.

A nice addition, a good debut, but far from essential.

3 stars.

//LinusW

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 Nucleus by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1995
4.02 | 262 ratings

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Nucleus
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Anekdoten's album refines the approach of Vemod, taking the King Crimson-inspired style of that album and amping up the heavy, at points almost grungy guitar riffs. It's an intoxicating mix which at its best threatens to beat the 1990s King Crimson at their own game, but once again it doesn't quite hold up over the course of the album; the tracks begin to blend together and my attention invariably begins to drift at about the halfway point. Though they do manage to do slightly better at judging when to throw in a quieter section to keep things varied, the different quiet and loud sections all begin to sound like each other after a while. OK if you're addicted to Red-era King Crimson, but I'd rather just listen to Red again.

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 Vemod by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1993
4.00 | 257 ratings

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Vemod
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Anekdoten's debut album finds them already mastering their chosen style - a style heavily inspired by King Crimson from around the period of Red, with a combination of raging guitar, a jazzy rhythm section and melancholic Mellotron creating an air of nostalgia and yearning on each track. In fact, this is my major criticism of the album - each track seems devoted to exploring precisely the same sort of emotional mood in precisely the same way. The lack of variation eventually begins to wear on me over the course of the album, though King Crimson fans who seriously miss the Red era will doubtless find it endlessly entertaining.

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 Vemod by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1993
4.00 | 257 ratings

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Vemod
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by tamijo

4 stars Vemod First of all, this album is not heavy prog. Could hardly get further away from Rush ' Porcupine ' The Mars Volta, and still play prog. Rock. The better choice would be Neo-Eclectic Prog

Vemod means 'a mood of sentimental sadness', as in your lost love is still haunting your soul, and you feel this sweet sadness thinking about good things passed, never to come back. Cant help wonder if it (at least in part) was reffering to the music from days long passed. There is no doubt that Anekdoten was inspired by 70's music, even though they allways sounds like Anekdoten. Vemod was the debut, and this is often where you can expect to find the the closest link to the main inspirators, in this case King Crimson, the link is there, but not enough to make this a Neo-Crims recording. The studio sound on Vemod is a bit 'rough' compared to the sound they would develop later, maby due to the equipment getting better, maby a choice, but it sounds a bit unpolished. The album is good, as a collecters choice, its a must, beeing the debut, one of the 90's prog classics. As a Anekdoten album however, its may not be the best choice to get this one first, its seems like they havent yet fully found there own unik style, that would later make them one of the best prog acts, to make a neo prog. with roots in 70's Crimson, as opposed to those many bands with roots closer to 70's Yes/Genesis. The highlight is the last track Wheel (7:52), (on some editions followed by an 'extra':Sad Rain) A supreeme old style 'Crimson'ish' track, makes my ears flip with pleasure. Sad Rain, as mentioned an edition on some versions, is a 10 min.+ Epic, very closely related to Tracks like 'Epitaph', not very original, but still great. Vemod is a very nice album, that I truely love, but its not the masterpiece. All in all the album deserves a small 4 stars, It's essential, its excellent, I just miss something, that i cant put my fingers on.

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 Gravity by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.82 | 210 ratings

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Gravity
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by Moonstone

4 stars This is a GREAT prog album!

The album is GREAT all the way through, and my absolute farorite Anekdoten album. No bad tracks here, though some are more interesting than others.

Anekdoten sound is very distinctive, with lots & lots of Mellotron and dramatic singing.

It starts strong with "Monoilt" and "Richochet", in my book the best songs on the album. These two tracks are one of Anekdotens finest moments ever in my book.

"What Should But Did Not Die" is a drone song very similar to "The End" by The Doors. Great song. "SW4" is another beautyful drone song with backwards vocal effects.

"Gravity" hits you strong with hard Mellotron all over the place. Epic ending.

"The Games We Play" and "Seljak" are great, but not my favorites.

A great album, and an essential album in the collection.

4,5 stars.

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