(In this latest edition of the Synn Report, Andy Synn reviews the four-album discography of an amazing technical death metal band from Sweden — Anata.)
Recommended for fans of: Gorod, Nile, Necrophagist
I told you I wanted to break up the more black metal-y trend of the column, didn’t I? Well feast your eyes, ears, and whatever other senses you feel inclined to use, on the blistering technical death metal of Anata!
Hailing from Varberg, Sweden, the band (currently a three-piece, but historically performing and recording as a quartet) have produced four albums since the release of their debut in 1998, each one getting steadily more complex and refined, more intense and blistering, as the years have unfolded, striving to achieve a perfect balance between progressive complexity, technical wizardry, and shocking brutality.
With tech-death, what primarily differentiates the bands from each other is the roots they draw from. Obscura draw more obviously from Morbid Angel/Death than many others. Gorod owe a large debt to Cynic/Atheist. Beneath The Massacre pull mostly from the Cryptopsy/Dying Fetus school. What I hear most strongly from Anata, though, is the undercurrent of early Nile/Decapitated that runs through a lot of their material (particularly on the first two records) – the sort of blistering, sand-blasting technicality that focusses more on harsh tempo shifts and syncopated discordance over unerring blasting or whirlwind fretwork.
Granted, there’s more than a hint of Suffocation to their sound as well, coupled with a hefty dose of capital-M morbid melody, but the group’s delivery is less about extroverted extremity and more focussed on expressing their introverted neuroses and contradictions. Indeed, this sets them another step apart from the more extreme of their technical brethren, as the difficulty and complexity of Anata’s songs comes from more than just outrageous technicality or brutality, but also from the off-kilter, unsettling arrangements and unquantifiable methods the band employ! Continue reading »