EDGE OF SANITY

Melodic Death Metal / Death Metal • Sweden
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Edge of Sanity was a Swedish progressive death metal band whose work often delved into experimental territory. While artists like Bathory and Emperor had recorded songs that could be regarded as epic, Edge of Sanity are regarded alongside Opeth as being the first to fuse extreme metal styles like death and black metal with genuine progressive rock.

Having formed in 1989 in Finspång, Sweden, Edge of Sanity asserted themselves as a solid death-metal outfit with their debut release "Nothing but Death Remains", but their second release "Unorthodox", with tracks like "Enigma" and "When All Is Said", showed them branching out from some of the genre's conventions. "The Spectral Sorrows", "Until Eternity Ends", and "Purgatory Afterglow" continued the trend, so that by the release of 1996's "Crimson" they were recording full-on progressive metal. "Crimson" was a 40-minute concept album consisting entirely of one track, concerning a post-apocalyptic future in which mankind
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EDGE OF SANITY Discography

EDGE OF SANITY albums / top albums

EDGE OF SANITY Nothing but Death Remains album cover 3.14 | 16 ratings
Nothing but Death Remains
Death Metal 1991
EDGE OF SANITY Unorthodox album cover 3.84 | 20 ratings
Unorthodox
Death Metal 1992
EDGE OF SANITY The Spectral Sorrows album cover 3.91 | 25 ratings
The Spectral Sorrows
Melodic Death Metal 1993
EDGE OF SANITY Purgatory Afterglow album cover 3.73 | 34 ratings
Purgatory Afterglow
Melodic Death Metal 1994
EDGE OF SANITY Crimson album cover 4.39 | 107 ratings
Crimson
Melodic Death Metal 1996
EDGE OF SANITY Infernal album cover 3.19 | 16 ratings
Infernal
Melodic Death Metal 1997
EDGE OF SANITY Cryptic album cover 2.38 | 14 ratings
Cryptic
Melodic Death Metal 1997
EDGE OF SANITY Crimson II album cover 3.73 | 28 ratings
Crimson II
Melodic Death Metal 2003

EDGE OF SANITY EPs & splits

EDGE OF SANITY Until Eternity Ends album cover 3.50 | 2 ratings
Until Eternity Ends
Melodic Death Metal 1994

EDGE OF SANITY live albums

EDGE OF SANITY demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

EDGE OF SANITY Euthanasia album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Euthanasia
Death Metal 1989
EDGE OF SANITY Kur-Nu-Gi-A album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Kur-Nu-Gi-A
Death Metal 1990
EDGE OF SANITY The Dead album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Dead
Death Metal 1990
EDGE OF SANITY The Immortal Rehearsals album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Immortal Rehearsals
Death Metal 1990
EDGE OF SANITY Dead But Dreaming album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Dead But Dreaming
Death Metal 1992
EDGE OF SANITY Unorthodox album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Unorthodox
Death Metal 1992
EDGE OF SANITY The Spectral Sorrows Demos album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Spectral Sorrows Demos
Melodic Death Metal 1993
EDGE OF SANITY Lost album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Lost
Melodic Death Metal 1993
EDGE OF SANITY Darkday album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Darkday
Melodic Death Metal 1993
EDGE OF SANITY Infernal Demos album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Infernal Demos
Melodic Death Metal 1996

EDGE OF SANITY re-issues & compilations

EDGE OF SANITY Evolution album cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Evolution
Melodic Death Metal 1999
EDGE OF SANITY When All Is Said: The Best of Edge of Sanity album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
When All Is Said: The Best of Edge of Sanity
Melodic Death Metal 2006
EDGE OF SANITY Kur-Nu-Gi-A album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Kur-Nu-Gi-A
Melodic Death Metal 2012

EDGE OF SANITY singles (0)

EDGE OF SANITY movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

EDGE OF SANITY Reviews

EDGE OF SANITY Crimson

Album · 1996 · Melodic Death Metal
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BitterJalapeno
After years of drifting away from the heavier side of music and spending a lot of time wandering around the misty realms psychedelic, I find myself back with a bang and have been revisiting some metal relics from my teenage iPod days. This, coupled with the Covid-19 lockdown in Scotland has sent me on a rampage of metal music discovery with death/prog/sludge/doom being at the very heart of it.

This album was a first for me in 2020 and I have to say that I already love it dearly like an old friend. It has equal elements of death metal and progressive metal but is also surprisingly easy going and very much likable on first listen which is not always the case for some albums spanning the death/prog sub genres. For example, GORGUTS' OBSCURA took me a good 5 focused listens to even begin to comprehend although I did also eventually love it and is also now a firm favourite.

Crimson flows seamlessly through 8 parts of a prog/death metal epic and is full of incredible deep riffs peppered with highly melodic lead guitar parts, some of which are reminiscent of the music of NWOBHM and which also have clearly been an influence on the likes of MASTODON who took sludge metal to new territories in the early 00s. The more melodic side of this album can also be clearly heard in the more accessible bands of the 00s melodic metalcore scene such us KILLSWITCH ENGAGE.

I would recommend this album highly to lovers of all types of metal music, even those that are put off by the death growls as it exhibits a stunning atmospheric and melodic quality which I feel makes it more easily penetrable than the majority of other albums within the genre. Overall, an outstanding adventure through sound. My only disappointment is that I had not heard it prior to 2020.

4.5/5

EDGE OF SANITY Evolution

Boxset / Compilation · 1999 · Melodic Death Metal
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UMUR
"Evolution" is a compilation album release by Swedish death metal act Edge of Sanity. The compilation was released through Black Mark Productions in November 1999. It was originally a two-disc release and predominantly features remaster and remix versions of tracks from the band´s pre-1999 releases. Lead vocalist Dan Swanö is credited for mixing and matering of the tracks. In addition to the remastered and remixed album tracks on the compilation, "Evolution" also features a new track ("Epidemic Reign"), and a couple of cover tracks (which have also been remastered and remixed).

I´m a fan of keeping things as they are (warts and all) and the necessity of remaster and remix albums have always eluded me. "Evolution" is not a remaster/remix compilation album which is gonna convince me otherwise. In many cases a remaster/remix version of a song lessens the impact of said song instead of enhancing the listening experience, and the original version is always preferable, even though some of the early material by Edge of Sanity did feature rough around the edges sound productions, which on the original releases certainly could have been better sounding. But that´s sometimes the charm of raw and unpolished releases and you often learn to live with and even appreciate the rough edged productions of releases like that. It becomes part of their identity and the history of the recording artist, and meddling with history like that often ends badly. To make a comparison (I know...it´s a completely ridiculous one, but my point should come across), think of how fans of Donald Duck would react, if Disney went back and changed the color or Donalds clothes from blue to red in all the old cartoons...there would be heads rollin´.

Enough of my ranting though, and let´s talk a little more about "Evolution". The compilation features 24 tracks and most Edge of Sanity albums (minus Crimson (1996)") and the "Until Eternity Ends (1994)" EP are represented by a couple of tracks, and as mentioned above there are also a couple of cover tracks and a new tracks featured on the album. A good part of the studio album picks are among the lesser remarkable tracks in the band´s discography though, and it´s what I would call odd tracklist choices for a compilation album. I understand the need to include some cover tracks and a new song to pull people in (although most of those tracks aren´t particularly remarkable either), but releasing a compilation, which does not feature the band´s best work is beyond me. I´d recommend purchasing the 2006 "When All is Said" compilation instead, if you want a taste of what Edge of Sanity is about and don´t want to purchase all their albums up front. "Evolution" is not a good way to get aquainted with the output of Edge of Sanity and is purely a release for the hardcore fans, who need to own everything the band have ever released. A 2.5 star (50%) rating is warranted.

EDGE OF SANITY Kur-Nu-Gi-A

Demo · 1990 · Death Metal
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UMUR
"Kur-Nu-Gi-A" is the 2nd demo cassette tape by Swedish death metal act Edge of Sanity. The demo was self-released in 1990. Edge of Sanity were formed in 1989 and relatively quickly released their first demo cassette tape "Euthanasia (1989)". "Kur-Nu-Gi-A" was originally limited to 500 copies, but when they sold out, 500 additional copies were made (featuring a slightly different cover artwork).

The demo features 6 tracks and a full playing time of 20:06 minutes. All tracks would appear in re-recorded (and in some cases re-arranged) versions on future studio albums. "Decepted by the Cross", "Maze of Existence", and "Immortal Souls" on "Nothing but Death Remains (1991)", "Beyond the Unknown" and "The Day of Maturity" on "Unorthodox (1992)", and "Serenade for the Dead" on "The Spectral Sorrows (1993)".

Stylistically Edge of Sanity have now shed all 80s thrash metal influences (which "Euthanasia (1989)" featured in smaller doses) and the music on "Kur-Nu-Gi-A" is 100% pure death metal. Even this early on Edge of Sanity was not a standard old school Swedish death metal act. Their compositions were generally more sophisticated and adventurous (at times even semi-progressive) than what most of their contemporaries produced.

"Kur-Nu-Gi-A" features a raw and lo-fi produced sound quality, which may lack a bit in the detail department, but makes up for it in raw and brutal charm. Dan Swanö´s growling vocals are slightly more intelligible on "Kur-Nu-Gi-A" than the case was on "Euthanasia (1989)", but he still doesn´t sound as unique as he does on the succeeding studio albums. I´d say he´s about half way there though. The band are fairly well playing although especially the guitars sound a bit untight at times. Even a bit out of tune too.

The general quality of the material is decent enough, but it´s mostly "Decepted by the Cross" and "Maze of Existence" which showcase the future brilliance of Edge of Sanity. The rest is more standard quality death metal and upon conclusion a 3 star (60%) rating isn´t all wrong.

EDGE OF SANITY Euthanasia

Demo · 1989 · Death Metal
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UMUR
"Euthanasia" is the first demo cassette tape released by Swedish death metal act Edge of Sanity. The demo was self-released in November 1989. The tape was released with three different artwork colour variations. One with a black/white cover, one with a red/black cover, and one with a blue/black cover.

"Euthanasia" features 5 tracks and a full playing time of 10:52 minutes. "Return of Consciousness" is a short intro, but the remaining four tracks are "regular" death metal tracks. This is of course early death metal and therefore there are strong thrash metal leanings in the music too. Many of the riffs and rhythms are more in the thrash metal camp than in the death metal ditto. Dan Swanö´s vocals are death metal growls though. The intro, "Pernicious Anguish" and "Disrupting the Inhabitants" are exclusive to this release, while "Human Aberration" would appear in a re-recorded version on the band´s debut full-length studio album "Nothing but Death Remains (1991)", and "Incipience to the Butchery" would be featured in a re-recorded version on the band´s second full-length "Unorthodox (1992)".

The musicianship is decent for a first demo, but not everything is played as tight as it could have been. Swanö had not yet developed his disctinct sounding intelligible growling vocal style either, so his vocals here are more standard unintelligible growling. The material is overall of a relatively good quality and especially the two tracks which made it unto studio albums display that even this early on Edge of Sanity had some pretty unconventional ideas, although in small doses on this release.

The sound production is raw and lo-fi, but the band have gotten the most out of the recording equipment they had at their disposal, and "Euthanasia" is generally listenable. Upon conclusion "Euthanasia" is certainly a promising first demo by Edge of Sanity and considering the time of release, the music is quite advanced for a death metal demo. A 3 star (60%) rating is warranted.

EDGE OF SANITY The Spectral Sorrows

Album · 1993 · Melodic Death Metal
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Warthur
"The Spectral Sorrows" could have been subtitled "We Weren't Kidding With The Last Album's Title", because if the previous release from Edge of Sanity was Unorthodox, this album well and truly embodies that idea. Though it continues the band's development of their own style of technically-inclined melodic death metal, it also includes a number of songs where the band members indulge their appreciation of other musical styles. Andreas Axelsson gets to take lead vocals on the thrashy Feedin' the Charlatan, for instance, whilst Dan Swanö indulges his taste for gothic rock (which would see further flowering on his Nightingale side project) on Sacrificed, which may be the best Sisters of Mercy pastiche out there.

The poster boy for the band's willingness to defy metal orthodoxy, however, has to be their decision to cover Manowar's Blood of My Enemies. At a time when the consensus among extreme metal fans was that Manowar were a total embarrassment and the living exemplars of everything cheesy about more traditional metal styles, Edge of Sanity manage to turn out a version of the song which adeptly twists it so that it fits their death metal aesthetic.

Well-produced, diverse, and with the band making a virtue of their divergent musical and artistic ideas rather than allowing those to be a bone of contention, this might be the best Edge of Sanity album aside from Crimson.

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