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ANEKDOTEN

Heavy Prog • Sweden


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Anekdoten picture
Anekdoten biography
Founded in Borlänge, Sweden in 1991

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 1991 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.

⭐ Collaborators Top Prog Album of 2015 ⭐

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 sh...
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Until All the Ghosts Are GoneUntil All the Ghosts Are Gone
Virta 2015
$35.49
$38.88 (used)
ChapterChapter
KSCOPE 2017
$7.46
$11.66 (used)
NucleusNucleus
Remastered
Virta 2016
$31.50
$31.50 (used)
From WithinFrom Within
Virta Records
$82.00
Shooting StarShooting Star
Arcangelo
$30.58 (used)
VemodVemod
Virta 2007
$17.74
$9.00 (used)
Time of DayTime of Day
Musea 2007
$16.09
$28.50 (used)
GravityGravity
Anekdoten 2008
$14.97
$12.00 (used)
Waking The Dead, Live In Japan 2005Waking The Dead, Live In Japan 2005
Arcangelo
$27.99
$73.37 (used)
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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)

4.03 | 408 ratings
Vemod
1993
3.98 | 387 ratings
Nucleus
1995
4.07 | 420 ratings
From Within
1999
3.80 | 320 ratings
Gravity
2003
3.93 | 384 ratings
A Time Of Day
2007
4.14 | 637 ratings
Until All The Ghosts Are Gone
2015

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

3.77 | 34 ratings
Live
1997
4.21 | 74 ratings
Official Bootleg : Live In Japan
1998
4.52 | 95 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)

4.04 | 70 ratings
Chapters
2009

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

4.50 | 2 ratings
Shooting Star
2016

ANEKDOTEN Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 A Time Of Day by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.93 | 384 ratings

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A Time Of Day
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by sgtpepper

3 stars Anekdoten returned back with a modern mixture of prog, alternative rock, Canterbury and alternative pop influences. On average, the songs are calmer than before. The album does not bring anything revolutionary but shows that the band changes over time.

The first song "The great unknown" flows well and shows the band in a good shape. Canterbury influences with hard KC elements can be heard on "30 pieces". A great calm flute section can also be heard. "King oblivion" is a soft melodical song and one of the most catchy in their repertoire. "Every step I take" is a welcome instrumental trip with echoes of post-rock. "Stardust and sand" is another soft and semi- acoustic song to reflect. "In for a ride" brings an organ sound reminiscent of Caravan times.

Though not a bad album, it is not very memorable either. We must give Anekdoten credit for not resting on their laurels and providing an even album.

 Gravity by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.80 | 320 ratings

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Gravity
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by sgtpepper

3 stars Anekdoten returned to the stage with an updated sound and composing on their fourth album, Gravity.What used to be a prototype 90's KC-inspired progressive rock has turned into an alternative sounding rock with typical progrock instruments and layers without the previous complexity.

The first song shows a greater degree of accessibility than ever before, driven by mellotron, not heavy guitar riffs and mainstream friendly drums. "Ricochet" reminds me of Anathema not only because of vocals but also the rhythm section. "What should but did not die" is one of the closest songs harking back to the old times, however, gone is the raw brutality; the guitar riffs are decent and radio friendly. "SW4" is a forgettable track with experimental mood, what stands out is a digital piano line. The title track is one of the best on the album and gives space for mellotron to shine through. It's the last track "Seljak", where I finally find my favourite track. This fully instrumental and nostalgic number is a rather complex number with drums and guitar exceeding themselves. Melancholy reminds me of Opeth way of depression. All instruments are impressive here.

Overall, this is a pleasant album but in comparison to the previous ones, it didn't make Anekdoten stand out from the crowd.

 From Within by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1999
4.07 | 420 ratings

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From Within
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by sgtpepper

3 stars On this release, Anekdoten updated their sound to be more contemporary, include more keyboard sounds but at the heart, King Crimson still remains a clear influence. Singing has improved to be more convicing although still lacking the range of a common singer. This album is a seminal change in the direction that Anekdoten would be pursuing in the future.

"Kiss of life" showcases where band will be heading to in the future - a more streamlined and accessible interplay between mellotron/keyboard, guitar and rhythm section, excluding metallic fever and avantgarde elements.

"Hole" is a cornerstone on this album, however it reveals less in 11 minutes than some previous Anekdoten tracks in 7. The quiet parts represent the track majority and aren't too memorable. "Slow fire" and "Firefly" focus more on the overall feeling than sonic details. "The sun absolute" has a repetitive but capturing mellotron and xylophone interplay. The last track on the album is a poignant and melancholic one, the sung vocal suits very well.

Overall, it is a very enjoyable album although not on the same level as the first two in terms of music quality.

 Nucleus by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.98 | 387 ratings

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Nucleus
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by sgtpepper

4 stars Anekdoten returned with another raw, uncompromising album that is subtle and mellow as a contrast. The first track shows the development in the last two years: More confidence in new instruments, more variation in singing and less stiffness, also some inspiration by avantgarde and metal music. The intro is one of the heaviest by Anekdoten. Unusual singing on "Harvest" reminds me of alternative rock, especially in the end. The anthemic "Book of hours" is a lengthy piece taking its time to reach climax. The guitar notes in the intro accompanied by mellotron slowly take crescendo. The experimental part comes after a mellotron chorus featuring disonant avantgarde notes. "Raft" and "Rubank" have a unpolished and also unfinished feeling. "Here" is one of the few tracks on the album featuring cello to create a layer of deep sadness. "This far from the sky" is my favourite track on the album. The metallic riffs interchange with mellow guitar tones and excellent flute. The melotron chorus especially the crescendoed one at 3:30 leaves me speechless. Delicate guitar and heavy King Crimson like sounding parts add to the beautiful listening experience. The last track is quite different - mellow sounding harmony vocals, cello soundscape and xylophone in the end.

Anekdoten reached another level of maturity with this album and the album stood the test of time. Highly recommended.

 Vemod by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1993
4.03 | 408 ratings

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Vemod
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by sgtpepper

4 stars Together with Änglagard, Anekdoten are the most famous Swedish bearer of the King-Crimson message in the 90's.

In comparison to Änglagard, Anektoden is less melodic, melancholic and stiffer, in other words, slightly different. It is also more accessible than Änglagard, in my opinion.

Vemod is one of their best albums if not the best one. A good balance of instrumental and rarely sung music as well as presence of violin and mellotron bring the KC authenticity.

"Karelia" is a trademark instrumental combining heavy and mellow moments having a memorable dark mellotron intro. Delicate guitar lines belong to another highlight. "Old man and the sea" is in its composition a complex piece very much resembling King Crimson style. "Where solitude remains" has a killing melancholic solo in the end and 3/4 rhythm pattern in the beginning. The mellow "Thoughts in absence" showcases flute, jazz guitar licks and synths, something that Opeth could be doing in 20 years on. "The flow" is not surprisingly focusing mainly on the music flow rather than melody or arrangements until the 5th minute when a very progressive experimental dynamic section kicks in. "Longing" has a pastoral and broken feeling that makes it the most peaceful track on the album.

The album "Vemod" is characterised by mature composition and playing and will be a welcome addition to any prog music collection.

 Vemod by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1993
4.03 | 408 ratings

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Vemod
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by TenYearsAfter

5 stars What will be the status of Anekdoten in the year 2025, 10 years after their latest (or last) effort entitled Until All The Ghosts Are Gone. Will this Swedish prog formation be remembered as legendary Nineties Skandinavian progressive rock? Or as a very good prog band, but too derivative? If I take a look at this website I notice that Anekdoten was a highly acclaimed band between 1993 and 2015 (all albums around a 4 star rating) but then Anekdoten gradually turned from highly acclaimed into pretty overlooked. The reason for this intro is the fact that I recently watched Anekdoten live footage on the Internet, and again I got very excited about their music. I decided to play their praised debut CD entitled Vemod, this title is close to the Dutch word 'weemoed' and also means 'melancholical mood', a strong indication for the Anekdoten sound.

1. Karelia - instrumental (7:20) : What a legendary Mellotron intro, especially when the violin section joins, goose bumps! Then the music explodes with a propulsive, powerful and dynamic rhythm-section and fiery electric guitar, early King Crimson rules, very exciting. The music frequently alternates between dreamy and bombastic, this creates a lot of tension in the music, embellished with wonderful work on the Mellotron and the cello by Anna Sofi Dahlberg.

2. The Old Man and the Sea (7:50) : More KC inspired prog, the drummer shines with his inventive play and assorted percussion, and the bass growls, very powerful. The English vocals sound inspired, the focus is on emotion, from dark to fragile, but at some moments the singer lacks a bit power. The bombastic and heavy outbursts are awesome, with Mellotron choirs, 'Red meest ITCOTCK', how thrilling! The mellow parts delivers subtle piano work, again creating lots of tension.

3. Where Solitude Remains (7:20) : A heavy and bombastic atmosphere, fuelled by an agressive bass sound and embellished with Mellotron layers, this is trademark Anekdoten. Then dreamy with Mellotron flutes and melancholical vocals. Halfway a great build-up with howling guitar and Mellotron floods, supported by an awesome rhythm-section!

4. Thought in Absence (4:10) : The music turns into mellow featuring a jazzy guitar and fragile vocals. In the end subtle piano and gentle electric guitar runs, simply wonderful.

5. The Flow (6:58) : An intro with sound effects (Genesis with The Waiting Room comes to my mind), then biting Fripperian guitar, a thunderous rhythm-section and Mellotron flutes. The distinctive melancholical vocals match with the dark and compelling atmosphere, topped with majestic Mellotron violins and dark cello work. In a propulsive and heavy, catchy beat we can enjoy a distorted cello solo and Fripperian guitar runs, fiery and biting, like a musical chainsaw! The final part is bombastic with a heavy cello solo, an adventurous part.

6. Longing (4:50) : Another mellow track, with tender classical guitar and cello, evoking a very melancholical atmosphere. To me it sounds like sublimating deep sorrow, very emotional. And what a huge contrast with all those heavy, bombastic and agressive parts on this album.

7. Wheel (7:52) : A bombastic Mellotron drenched atmosphere with powerful drum beats, then mellow with cello and a bit high pitched duo vocals (male and female), pretty hypnotizing and dark. Halfway agressive work on guitar and bass, blended with Fripperian guitar, powerful bass lines and a flugelhorn solo, like the more avant-garde side of King Crimson. The music explodes again with biting electric guitar (overdubs) and a powerful and dynamic rhythm-section, and in the end the flugelhorn, a strong musical idea.

8. Sad Rain (10:14) : I bought the Japanese 1995 CD version because of this mindblowing bonus track, to me it sounds as Anekdoten its dark answer to the titletrack of ITCOTCK. The music starts with a slow and bombastic atmosphere with wonderful Mellotron violins, then dreamy with twanging guitar and tender vocals. The exciting contrast between the dreamy and bombastic parts is the perfect formula in this epic composition, topped by majestic Mellotron violins and flutes. Halfway the music gradually culminates in a very compelling 'grand finale' featuring the Mighty Tron in its full splendor, wow, this is Prog Heaven, goose bumps!

I have always had mixed feelings about Classic Prog band King Crimson: I love their melodic and harmonic work, and I dislike their more experimental and avant-garde compositions. Well, Anekdoten started as a King Crimson cover band, and I am very pleased that on this first effort they have blended the melodic and harmonic elements of the more mellow King Crimson album ITCOTCK and the more agressive and dark album Red. This has resulted in very dynamic, contrasting and compelling music, topped with wonderful work on the unsurpassed Mellotron. So a big hand for Anekdoten their debut album, for me a masterpiece of Nineties Skandinavian prog, along with the first albums of contemporaries Landberk and Anglagard!

 From Within by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1999
4.07 | 420 ratings

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From Within
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by The Crow
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Third effort by this splendid Swedish heavy prog band!

And this album saw the return of Simon Nordberg in the role of producer after his work in the band's debut Vemod. And while maintaining some of the raw force and heavier sound of Nucleus, this From Within take back some elements of Vemod like the predominance of beautiful mellotron melodies and a more symphonic approach to prog which reminds to King Crimson. But don't worry, the great heavy riffs of Nucleus are still there!

However, this album also brought back the vocal sound of Vemod. I never liked the vocalist of the band very much, but I think that in From Within he sings worse than ever spoiling the otherwise wonderful music than we can hear through the album. In Vemod the music was five stars, and because the vocals I gave this album only four. In Nucleus he improved a bit, making his performance a bit more bearable. But in From Within this high pitched, weak and slightly out of tone singing is annoying again, making that a four star album only gets three.

Best Tracks: Kiss of Life (wonderful music and incredible mellotron background), Hole (complex, long and very compelling one) and The Sun Absolute (the best track of the album, because it has no vocals on it)

Conclusion: From Within is a beautiful album, which mixes the best elements of Vemod and Nucleus, along with a pair of stimulating new ideas. It contains a stunning songwriting is most of the songs and the instruments sound fantastic. Nevertheless, and sadly, I find the vocals more annoying than ever, making the hearing of this album very pleasant and unpleasant at the same time.

Nevertheless, if you are into heavy prog, dark ambients and great mellotron melodies, please try Anekdoten!

My rating: ***

 Nucleus by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.98 | 387 ratings

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Nucleus
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by The Crow
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Nucleus is the second effort from one of the most interesting prog-rock bands born in the 90's.

And it's also a confirmation that this band is more of a King Crimson wannabe because they were able to develop and expand their sound in rather hoarse way, but equally interesting.

The album opens with the title track, with a rather aggressive and noisy mellotron, creating an exciting contrast with the more mellow and melodic first record. In the brutal chorus we can also hear that the main singer has also improved his singing, while we enjoy the piercing bass and the fast guitar melodies.

Harvest regain a Little the King Crimson's style at the beginning, but soon turns into a rabid punk tune with playful guitars. After that we are delighted with some cello melodies and a great and obscure final section, very prog.

Book of Hours starts with a slow and repetitive Melody with a persistent mellotron which is broken by dissonant guitars which lead to another marvelous Vemod-style tune followed by Raft, a Little dissonant instrumental song.

Rubankh is another instrumental song but much more hard and aggressive. I think this track is a good summary of that Anekdoten were trying to achieve with this album, developing a very distinctive and personal sound. This makes the album less accessible and rather difficult to appreciate at the first listening, but catchy and enchanting through repeated plays.

This Far From the Sky has a very fierce beginning with an interlude which brings automatically Vemod to mind with the typical interlaced mellotron, cello and psychedelia. The instrumental part is maybe the most intricated and psychedelic of the whole album.

In Freedom closes the album in a very beautiful and mellow way, with incredible strings melodies. Pure talent.

Conclusion: Nucleus was strong step forward in the right direction. The compositions are maybe not so catchy and resounding like in the marvelous opera prima Vemod, but the band achieved a more personal and distinctive sound, making this album even more valuable than the previous one in my opinion while almost maintaining the same quality in the melodies and structures of the songs.

The King Crimson tribute band is gone. Welcome Anekdoten!

Best Tracks: Nucleus, Book of Hours, This Far From the Sky, In Freedom.

My rating: ****

 Until All The Ghosts Are Gone by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 2015
4.14 | 637 ratings

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Until All The Ghosts Are Gone
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by kenethlevine
Special Collaborator Prog-Folk Team

4 stars As with the "Larks Tongues.." thru "Red" era of KING CRIMSON, ANEKDOTEN proposes an intense mellotron soaked take on heavy prog rather than the mellow romanticism of early MOODY BLUES, Crimson, or the myriad disciples that followed. Comparisons to a RIVERSIDE and growl-free OPETH are also appropriate. Nonetheless, on this album, the band also navigates pathways of resounding beauty that contrast with the claustrophobic atmosphere elsewhere. Moreover, rather than overexerting the tron flutes and brass, the band invites guests to lend their respiratory systems to the authentic instrumentation. How quaint! But also most effective, especially when blended with 12 string guitars and their ilk, like in "If it all comes down to you".

As a fan of the lighter end of the spectrum, I find plenty to enjoy here, in music that works for lazy drifting and active listening, but my personal highlight is "The Writing on the Wall", especially the last few minutes, at first palpably light, almost dainty, before a brilliantly emotive guitar/mellotron blend parades triumphantly to the exits accompanied by dignified choral effects. But on the more big P prog substantive scale, I also want to signal the tasteful saxophone work over hypnotic rhythms as the album's closing instrumental winds down. In contrast, "Shooting Star" is a bit too SPOCK'S BEARD like for my taste, with a rather trite verse-chorus structure and lyrics somewhat redeemed by instrumental illuminations in the break.

Landing somewhere between 3 and 4 stars, "Until all the Ghosts are Gone" bubbles up because of its appeal across the prog diaspora, a knowing blend of dark and light to haunt us until...

 A Time Of Day by ANEKDOTEN album cover Studio Album, 2007
3.93 | 384 ratings

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A Time Of Day
Anekdoten Heavy Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Anekdoten's first brace of albums all largely chase the same broad style of heavy prog influenced strongly by mid- 1970s King Crimson, and an audience thirsty for new prog lapped them up eagerly. (For my part I find that they tend to sound a little samey, with From Within standing a little ahead of the pack.) A Time of Day finds the band sidestepping into a quieter style, with psychedelic influences suggesting that they had been listening to a good deal of 1960s proto- progressive works in the intervening years since Gravity, establishing a new sound for themselves which they would successfully polish further on the following Until All the Ghost Are Gone.

If you are highly invested in the early Anekdoten sound, take a breath and clear your mind a little before listening to this one, because it's not going to meet your expectations - but if you find that Vemod, Nucleus, and From Within tend to mash together into one indistinct mass in your head, you may find this the refreshing new take that Anekdoten needed.

Thanks to Erik Neuteboom for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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