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Anata - The Infernal Depths Of Hatred  CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

2.53 | 10 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
3 stars ANATA started out in Varberg, Sweden (just south of Gothenburg) all the way back in 1993 when Fredrik Sch'lin (vocals, guitar), Mattias Svensson (guitar), Martin Sj'strand (bass), and Robert Petersson (drums) started jamming to their favorite death metal bands and took their sweet time in releasing the two demos 'Bury Forever The Garden Of Life' and 'Vast Lands Of My Infernal Dominion' but the practice and patience paid off because as the band was honing its chops it successfully caught the attention of the Seasons of the Mist label. By the time the band got to releasing the 1998 debut THE INFERNAL DEPTHS OF HATRED there was a new lineup with Henrik Drake on bass and Andreas Allenmark.

Noted for their brutality and technical inclinations, ANATA's debut started out as a typical death metal release in the vein of Cryptopsy, Deicide and Dark Tranquility only more bombastic, with faster tempos and a sense of brutality more like Suffocation. The band's unique stamp was that it implemented C# tuning and created melodic constructs out of dissonant guitar riffs. While sounding rather generic on this first offering, the band exhibited a firm command of the instrumentation with lightning fast riffs that pummel away the senses and with heavy distortion and hints of progressiveness that would mature on future albums although one wouldn't call this technical by today's standards especially when side by side by other 1998 landmarks such as Gorguts' magnum opus 'Obscura.'

While creating melodic tracks instead of focusing on the rhythmic patterns that many tech death bands use to construct their labyrinthine progressions, ANATA has been referred to as melodic death metal given that the band emerged near the epicenter of melo-death, the Gothenburg scene where bands like At The Gates, In Flames and Dark Tranquility got the ball rolling. Having played with bands like Rotting Christ, there is a sense of blackened death metal in the mix as well. Overall the tracks contain a plethora of ridiculously fast tempos with incessant dissonant guitar riffs pounding away with the occasional Morbid Angel influenced guitar squeal or two. The musicianship is top notch but overall i find this to be a bit too generic for its own good as the tech death world had evolved significantly by this time.

Particularly impressive is the drumming prowess of Robert Petersson who nails all the blastbeat and jazzified fills like a pro. Fredrik Sch'lin's growly vocals offer zero variation as he simply imitates the growly grunts of the past and in the process contributes to the rather stale presentation on display. As far as variation in the music though, there's enough disparate elements to keep this from being a total waste of time although for those not accustomed to the fastest tempos played in a death metal context, this will probably all sound the same. Overall i'm impressed by the instrumental skills of the musicians involved on THE INFERNAL DEPTHS OF HATRED but the compositional fortitude is clearly lacking as ANATA is simply going through the motions without really placing their own stamp on the world of extreme metal at this point. Still though ANATA are considered one of the more important bands of tech death so the logical place to start is in the beginning and although this debut isn't the most stellar example of tech death metal, it certainly gets the job done.

siLLy puPPy | 3/5 |


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