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Anacrusis - Manic Impressions CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

3.05 | 37 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars Far too long

"Manic impressions" was released in 1991, just a year after "Reasons", but it represents a major development in the history of the band. Drummer Mike Owen left after "Reasons", to be replaced by friend of the band Chad Smith. A deal was done with Metal Blade records for the release of the album, which should have meant the avoidance of the circumstances which led to the hurried nature of recordings for the first two albums. That at least was the theory. In the end, there was the by now customary panic to finish the recording and mixing in the time available.

With "Manic impressions", Anacrusis find their true identity. The songs are noticeably more complex, with strong riffs and thrash metal roots. The naivety and raw nature of the first two albums is replaced by significantly better production and recording techniques.

This is all very well, but does it make for a better album? Well, sadly for me it does not. Here, the vocals are far less melodic, at times almost grunted, while the guitar thrashing is repetitive and uninteresting. I find that it was in fact the na´ve and unfocused nature of the first two albums which made them alluring. Here, there is no question that a focus has been found, but it simply captures a style and sound I find decidedly unappealing. There are some decent passages, such as the switch on "Paint a picture" or "Far too long" to a softer, acoustically based section but all too soon the yapping vocals return.

Even the fine guitar playing which adorned the previous albums seems suppressed here, replaced by pounding riffs instead. There is the occasional surprise to be had. The cover of New model Army's "I love the world" has a very pop orientated chorus, quite out of context with the rest of the album and indeed the track.

In all, an album only for those who know what to expect. This will appeal only to those with a strong appetite for concentrated thrash metal. In prog terms, I can find little here of real value.

Easy Livin | 2/5 |


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