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Anathema - Alternative 4 CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

4.05 | 614 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars I've got this album in my collection already since a couple of years and I've to say it didn't lose one small bit of its fascination for me during all this time. Admittedly the band ANATHEMA serves best my preferred musical direction that is dark and melancholic (some people call it also "depressive" but for me it has rather the opposite effect) harder-edged music. Starting from "Eternity", their first album after they changed drastically their style from Doom/Death Metal to more mellow and atmospheric rock with a strong Floydian influence they drove this particular type of music more and more into perfection and together with their previous album this one has to be considered their best work so far.

There's actually not one single track on here to niggle about at all. Starting from the opener "Shroud Of False" serving in fact just as an intro with its great line "We are just a moment in time" (which stands for the whole album) to the last track "Destiny" there's just fantastic music full of beauty to be found on here. "Fragile Dreams" is a true "ear whig" which keeps sticking in your mind but nonetheless a great track, dreamy and fully rocking at the same time. "Empty" is probably the most catchy one of this album and still quite rocking with great lyrics whereas "Lost Control" comes very dreamy and fragile, a song filled with sorrow and anxiety but as great as the ones before. "Re-connect" has a perfectly fitting title since this song is in a way re-connecting the band with the world and with rock with a superb presentation of all musicians and the singer in particular. With "Inner Silence" which is almost fully instrumental the overall mood is getting once again contemplative and dreamy. The mesmerizing psychedelic drums on its end are leading over into the rather experimental sounding title track. "Regret" starts quiet in an acoustic vein but becoming more rocking later on what's been continued in "Feel" with a fantastic psyche touch and great organ sound. A furious drum outro leads then over in the final "Destiny" which is rather short, mostly instrumental and a perfect closure for this great album.

Finally I just can say that "Alternative 4" is a fantastic musical experience and "trip" for anyone being more into this type of dark atmospheric type of rock music. I'm not sure if the band Anathema can be considered essential in prog metal generally and they might appear as derivative to some prog fans but I'd highly recommend them and especially this album to all fans of "The Dark Side Of Prog"!

hdfisch | 4/5 |


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