Anterior - Echoes Of The Fallen
Anterior - the word basically means "in front" or the opposite to "posterior". A bold choice for a band name, one that shows a certain attitude in thought and carries with it a certain expectation all by itself. Of course, that's ultimately trivial, as this relatively young band's music can (and most certainly does) speak for itself. This is my first time with the Wales, UK metal outfit, and Echoes of the Fallen is their 2nd full-length release so far. It offers up tight, precise riffage and glorious leads in the style of American and European melodic death metal. This is a common opinion, mind you, but I find more in common with the traditional metal stylings of bands such as Iron Maiden, which is most likely a mere reflection on the elements of the music that speak the loudest to me.
Those elements are completely and 100% limited to the phenomenal guitar work of Leon Kemp and Steven Nixon. Masters of the almighty riff, and simply outstanding at writing a tasteful, moving guitar solo. Each song offers up slight variations in their core sound, one I'm sure you'll be familiar with after the first couple of tracks. "To Live Not Remain" fades into existance on an upbeat guitar line before hitting it's stride. Riffs aplenty and some excellent solos are to be found on just about every track, but songs like "Blood In the Throne Room", "Tyranny", "By Horror Haunted", "Sleep Soundly No More" and "Senora de las Sombras" are highlighted by their above-average songwriting and strong percussive foundation. The bass is nearly a ghost throughout the album, a consistent problem in this style of metal but, on the same token, part of the nature of the beast so it is easily forgiven. What isn't, however, is the lackluster vocals. It's no that they're terrible in any way, the mid-ranged growls and screams an atypical accompaniment to melodic death metal. The only problem is, this album offers up more than the typical melodeath album, with strong focus on the melodic side whereas the vocals seem prefixed with supporting the heavier element. I can't totally put my finger on why it bugs me, maybe the lack of clean vocals where they would apparently fit is just a disappointment.
Beyond the minor irritation lies a veritable buffet of epic metal goodness on Echoes of the Fallen. While not virtuistic, the guitar playing is the true highlight of the album, awe-inspiring and melodically spot-on. There's a feeling of power metal in the guitar leads and solos, a feeling of In Flames-esque gothenburg Melo-death in some of the melodies, and more traditional death in the vocals and percussion work. On the whole, the various influences that Anterior bring to the table make for an interesting and solidly written album.
User Reviews and CommentsLog In or Register to Rate Albums
Tell us why this album is great or sucks ass, or correct the reviewer. If you write enough quality reviews you may find yourself on the editorial staff.
Reviews have to be over 100 words, shorter ones are classed as comments.