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Anathema - A Natural Disaster CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

3.92 | 580 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
3 stars 3.5 stars. Danny Cavanagh actually left the band after the tour for "A Fine Day To Exit", depressed at the lack of success for that record, he joined former ANATHEMA member Duncan Patterson's band ANTIMATTER and played on their "Saviour" record. Danny would come back along with another brother, Jamie (Vincent's twin) and the result would be "A Natural Disaster". Danny wrote all the songs except for "Balance" (a group effort) and so this record is really Danny's baby. This in itself is unusual as ANATHEMA records have always been a shared endeavour. I will say ANATHEMA's lyrics have always been some of the best in the music industry, but this may be their finest. Travis Smith did the cover art. The subject matter is about internal disasters, the inner conflicts we all experience. The lyrics are great but the music for me is a let down. Where did the power go ? Lots of ambience but little to contrast it with.

"Harmonium" opens with the resonant vocals of Vincent and atmospheric keys creating a pastoral soundscape until about 2 1/2 minutes in when the drums thunder and the mood is changed. "Balance" is in the same vein as "Harmonium" nice start to the record. "Closer" really stands out as the vocals are sung through a vocoder giving the song a unique sound to say the least. The rhythm section really carries this piece. "Are You There ?" opens with female vocal melodies and is just plain beautiful and emotional.

"Children Dream" is pretty much a child's voice with gentle keys and guitar played sparingly. "Pulled Under At 2000 Meters A Second" reminds me of "Panic" on their last record , a real rocker. Another highlight is "A Natural Disaster" sung by Lee Douglas with a mellow soundscape. "Flying" is another mellow track with vocals. "Electricity" is similar but with Danny singing. "Violence" starts off with gentle piano and builds to a fury. I swear my arms get tired just hearing John drum on this section of the song. The song returns to tranquility once again as the album comes to a close.

It just seems like the lyrics have taken the priority over the music. I think this is called the Roger Waters syndrome.

Mellotron Storm | 3/5 |


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