ANATHEMA

Non-Metal / Death-Doom Metal / Doom Metal / Metal Related • United Kingdom
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Anathema is an English band based in the city of Liverpool, associated with "atmospheric" rock, as well as death/doom metal from their debut days.

Current Members Vincent Cavanagh - Lead vocals, rhythm guitar, acoustic guitar (1990-present) Daniel Cavanagh - Lead guitar, vocals (1990-2002, 2003-present) (Lid, Antimatter, Leafblade) Jamie Cavanagh - Bass (1990-1991, 2001-present) Les Smith - Keyboards (2000-present) (ex-Cradle of Filth, Antimatter, Ship of Fools) John Douglas - Drums (1990-1997, 1998-present) Lee Douglas - Vocals (2000-present)

Anathema formed in 1990 as a doom metal band, initially under the name 'Pagan Angel'. In November of that year, the band recorded their first demo, entitled An Iliad of Woes. This demo caught the attention of several bands from the English metal scene, allowing Anathema to play gigs with bands like Bolt Thrower and Paradise Lost. At the beginning of 1991, the band adopted its current name, and gained a lot of attention
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ANATHEMA Discography

ANATHEMA albums / top albums

ANATHEMA Serenades album cover 2.67 | 27 ratings
Serenades
Death-Doom Metal 1993
ANATHEMA The Silent Enigma album cover 3.27 | 35 ratings
The Silent Enigma
Death-Doom Metal 1995
ANATHEMA Eternity album cover 3.04 | 30 ratings
Eternity
Doom Metal 1996
ANATHEMA Alternative 4 album cover 4.07 | 55 ratings
Alternative 4
Metal Related 1998
ANATHEMA Judgement album cover 4.02 | 54 ratings
Judgement
Non-Metal 1999
ANATHEMA A Fine Day to Exit album cover 3.72 | 37 ratings
A Fine Day to Exit
Non-Metal 2001
ANATHEMA A Natural Disaster album cover 4.03 | 40 ratings
A Natural Disaster
Non-Metal 2003
ANATHEMA Hindsight album cover 3.76 | 17 ratings
Hindsight
Non-Metal 2008
ANATHEMA We're Here Because We're Here album cover 4.00 | 47 ratings
We're Here Because We're Here
Non-Metal 2010
ANATHEMA Falling Deeper album cover 3.90 | 23 ratings
Falling Deeper
Non-Metal 2011
ANATHEMA Weather Systems album cover 4.02 | 40 ratings
Weather Systems
Non-Metal 2012
ANATHEMA Distant Satellites album cover 3.92 | 24 ratings
Distant Satellites
Non-Metal 2014
ANATHEMA The Optimist album cover 2.66 | 8 ratings
The Optimist
Non-Metal 2017

ANATHEMA EPs & splits

ANATHEMA The Crestfallen EP album cover 2.53 | 10 ratings
The Crestfallen EP
Death-Doom Metal 1992
ANATHEMA Pentecost III album cover 2.97 | 14 ratings
Pentecost III
Death-Doom Metal 1995
ANATHEMA Alternative Future e.p. album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Alternative Future e.p.
Non-Metal 1998

ANATHEMA live albums

ANATHEMA Untouchable album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
Untouchable
Non-Metal 2012

ANATHEMA demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

ANATHEMA An Iliad of Woes album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
An Iliad of Woes
Death-Doom Metal 1990
ANATHEMA All Faith Is Lost album cover 4.75 | 2 ratings
All Faith Is Lost
Death-Doom Metal 1991
ANATHEMA The Sweet Suffering album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Sweet Suffering
Doom Metal 1994
ANATHEMA Demos '97 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Demos '97
Doom Metal 1997

ANATHEMA re-issues & compilations

ANATHEMA The Crestfallen EP + Pentecost III album cover 3.00 | 5 ratings
The Crestfallen EP + Pentecost III
Death-Doom Metal 1996
ANATHEMA Resonance album cover 2.75 | 2 ratings
Resonance
Non-Metal 2001
ANATHEMA Resonance 2 album cover 3.00 | 2 ratings
Resonance 2
Doom Metal 2002

ANATHEMA singles (8)

.. Album Cover
4.50 | 1 ratings
They Die / Crestfallen
Death-Doom Metal 1992
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
We Are the Bible
Death-Doom Metal 1994
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Make it Right
Non-Metal 1999
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Deep
Non-Metal 1999
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Pressure
Non-Metal 2001
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Unchained (Tales of the Unexpected)/Flying
Non-Metal 2008
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Everything
Non-Metal 2010
.. Album Cover
5.00 | 1 ratings
Dreaming Light
Non-Metal 2011

ANATHEMA movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
3.43 | 3 ratings
A Vision of a Dying Embrace
Doom Metal 1997
.. Album Cover
4.38 | 4 ratings
Were You There?
Non-Metal 2004
.. Album Cover
3.50 | 8 ratings
A Moment in Time
Non-Metal 2006
.. Album Cover
4.79 | 7 ratings
Universal
Non-Metal 2013

ANATHEMA Reviews

ANATHEMA Weather Systems

Album · 2012 · Non-Metal
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Peacock Feather
When you start talking about what is dear to you and loved to the depths of your heart and soul, it is always difficult to find the right words, epithets, metaphors to describe the feelings and emotions burning inside you. If We're Here Because We're Here stole my heart, used it a little and fed it, and then returned it to its rightful owner, then Weather Systems made this heart its own property.

All the best things start at the very end, and my introduction to Anathema began with the closing Internal Landscapes. I was blown away by how sensual it was, how genuinely sincere, and how the pathos was twisted to the maximum. I delayed my acquaintance with the album itself a little, coming to it gradually. I had already fallen in love with the Untouchable dilogy and the above-mentioned song, but I was afraid to be disappointed sometimes, even though I already knew that Anathema would be serious and lasting with me. And for the first time, I wasn't as impressed as I thought I would be.

To be honest, the whole Weather Systems is built on the same patterns, both its own and the patterns of the last album. All the songs follow basically the same canons, the same pattern, but that doesn't mean, damn it, that the album is monotonous and bad. I think I was able to see such an elusive feature of this album, as a complete immersion inside myself and inside the band itself, to be precise, inside Danny himself, who again became the author of almost all the songs on the album, only The Storm Before The Calm was written by John Douglas. No wonder Danny himself says that it is difficult for him to listen to Weather Systems, since the lyrics on the album are very personal for the older of Cavanaghs.

The deep emotionality of the release at some point completely conquered me, and I could no longer resist the endless beauty of this almost masterpiece. Neither the extraterrestrial majesty of Untouchable, nor the perfect embodiment of femininity in the person of Lee Douglas and her solo part in Lightning Song, nor the duality of The Storm Before The Calm (for a reason it is so different from the other songs on the album, due to the direct involvement of the drummer already mentioned above), nor the softness and lightness of The Beginning and the End, nor the epic melancholy of Internal Landscapes. Truly, there are no passing compositions for me here, Weather Systems have long, deeply and reliably settled in my heart. This is the best album of Anathema of the new period, which is slightly inferior to Judgment, but by a large margin wins over all other albums. I just don't know what words to choose for this album, these songs, when there is only one endless delight burning in my mouth.

ANATHEMA We're Here Because We're Here

Album · 2010 · Non-Metal
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Peacock Feather
For 7 long years, Anathema did not release anything big and new, but during this period the band held many concerts, which resulted in the reconciliation of Danny and Vinnie, as well as as many as 2 concert DVDs, on one of which, for example, a whole Comfortably Numb was covered. And in 2008, the band released a good acoustic compilation, Hindsight, in which the old hits of the band were transformed in a softer light (although, it would seem, much lighter), especially for Fragile Dreams and Angelica. Well, not about this collection, but about the album, which presented the band in a new, fully formed guise of the apostles of light, love and goodness, and if you are not sick of the combination of these 3 words in one sentence, then most likely, you will definitely have a good relationship with the new Anathema.

From the very first notes of Thin Air and the first lines uttered by Vinnie's gentle voice, you are immersed in this bright, sunny atmosphere, you feel that love is really freedom in time and peace. The meeting with the inevitable is delayed by the restless and nervous, but awesome Summer Night Horizon, which is a kind of light greeting to the beginning of the noughties, and then... the infinitely magical and touching Dreaming Light, my personal favorite, Everything, from which the stingy male tears of happiness strive to spill, the truly angelic song Angels Walk With Us, in which the vocals are performed by the notorious Ville Valo from HIM, and the epic A Simple Mistake with almost the best crescendo in the history of the band. And the overall impression of the album is not at all spoiled by either the frank filler Get Off Get Out, or the slightly delayed instrumental Hindsight, which closes the album (although this will still affect the final score). To tell you the truth, if I were in the guys' shoes, I would have made Universal the final song. Of all the songs of Anathema written by Vinnie, this one is his best work. At its core, it really feels like the final chapter of WHBWH, summing up everything Cavanagh/Douglas have had to say over the past 7 years.

By the way, a remarkable fact: all this splendor was mixed together by the maestro Steven Wilson, known to you all from his work in Porcupine Tree, No-Man, Blackfield and many other bands/projects. We're Here Because We're Here is by all accounts a great album that has already become a lifetime classic among the band's fans. If the guys would get rid of Get Off Get Out – I would give this work an unquestionable top ten or close to it.

ANATHEMA A Natural Disaster

Album · 2003 · Non-Metal
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Peacock Feather
A really telling name was chosen for the album by members of Anathema. It was born, by the way, in a conversation between Danny and Duncan Patterson, when they reconciled with each other. As stated by the Cavanagh brothers, at the time they were in a closed confrontation with each other for personal reasons, and this at some point led to the fact that Danny wanted to leave the group. Fortunately, this did not happen, moreover, the third of the Cavanagh brothers returned to the band after a long absence – Jamie, Vinnie's twin brother, who took over as bassist after the departure of Dave Pybus. Nevertheless, the inner state of Danny is absolutely accurately reflected in the new material, which is almost entirely written this time by the eldest of brothers (only Balance is co-written with Vinnie and John Douglas).

I see Natural Disaster as the album that became a kind of point of no return for the band. This LP of the "new" Anathema is unique in that, unlike the subsequent bright and optimistic albums, A Natural Disaster attracts exactly some kind of alienated, slightly gloomy, sad atmosphere. Against this background, the names of the first 2 tracks look very ironic, with such a sign! Although, maybe the band meant exactly the perfect harmony and balance that they finally found on this album.

From the first time I did not understand this album, I honestly admit, and I thought about putting it off until better times. The only thing that attracted me was the unusual Closer, and even then it was unusual because of the very skillful use of the vocoder. Later, however, the beauty of Natural Disaster began to unfold for me like a lotus bud. And here you are already clinging to the soul and pathos of Harmonium, and soulfulness of Are You There? (in which Danny again turns to the topic of losing a loved one), and the piercing aggression and darkness of Pulled Under at 2000 Meters a Second, and the hopelessness of the title song (Lee Douglas finally sings solo!), and the serenity of Flying, and the unexpected instrumental about 11 minutes with a well-chosen title Violence simply amazes with its mixture of the entire sound of the album, where sentimentality and aggression collide with each other and form a kind of yin and yang. By the way, in addition to Vinnie, on this album, Danny himself sings solo on 2 songs at once (Are You There? and Electricity), and what's funny, some reviewers confused the voices of Vinnie and Danny (although objectively they are completely different)!

On Natural Disaster, the band went even further from its musical past, but it adapts some ideas from there and turns them into new, unique things, like, for example, it happened with the aforementioned Pulled Under at 2000 Meters a Second, but the trend remained the same: Anathema continued to modify its musical vector, and it seems that on A Natural Disaster, they finally found the necessary and convenient sound. The verdict is simple: despite a couple of tracks (Balance and Electricity), which in my subjective opinion are rather boring, the album is really great, and I love it almost as much as the previous two.

ANATHEMA A Fine Day to Exit

Album · 2001 · Non-Metal
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Peacock Feather
With that creative vector that Anathema has formed, it was hard to guess which way the band would move on the next release. And so it turned out that the Liverpudlians decided to try to experiment not only with the sound, but also with the format of the material, because they planned to make a concept album, the first in their career. The essence of the concept is the progressive movement of the lyrical hero down the spiral (almost like in Trent Reznor's 1994 masterpiece The Downward Spiral) straight to suicide. Sounds intriguing, doesn't it?

However, do not rely on chewing the meaning and plot from the mouth of Vinnie or anyone else from the group - the canvas of Anathema is cut into unequal pieces, which, with all the desire and perseverance of the listener, will not reveal the true storyline. And band members themselves, it seems, did not fully understand exactly how and in what order to listen to the compositions they wrote; in the 2015 remaster, the intro of A Fine Day, which was thrown out of the original release, is added, which resembles Panic in its nervousness and despair, and the original songs are mixed in a radically different order (for example, the same Panic and the Pressure opening the album are located in the middle of the album). However, I personally prefer to listen to the album in the original order.

And how are things going, actually, with the music? It was just a wonderful alt-prog-rock record. As you know, all the best of 2000' alternative starts with one name – Radiohead. This infection, which I do not like with every fiber of my soul, has turned heads of our Liverpool heroes. Another thing is that I really like the ideas of Radiohead, but the way they implement these ideas, I'm sorry, I can't stand it, and I'd rather listen to the Radiohead-esque album from my favorite Anathema, who made these ideas in the best possible way. By the way, even now this album is often underestimated and not remembered at the mention of the name of Anathema, and I can not even find any explanation for this phenomenon. Although, probably, the matter is in several existing factors, the main of which is that 2 years before A Fine Day to Exit, Judgement was released. The uneasy fate of the successor to the great album also befell A Fine Day to Exit. Moreover, the focus on alt-rock confused even many fans of the band's last 2 albums. And very wrongly, because this album, despite the concept that runs through all the songs as a leitmotif, is full of treasure. These are the first 2 songs, slow Pressure with a haunting chorus and Release with a slight touch of electronica, and wonderful alt-rock Leave No Trace, written by Vinnie, and psychedelic-evil Underworld and Panic, and tragic Barriers (again a duet of Danny Cavanagh and Lee Douglas) and the title song. Anathema also did not forget about the concept itself, and their lyrical hero ends... (?) And then the Liverpudlians cut the story short, leaving it up to us to interpret the end of the album, whether the hero really killed himself in the cold ocean or decided to wait. The answer to this question will be given 16 years later, but this is already another story.

In the end, we have a unique work in the Anathema discography, which is underrated by the fans, but no less beautiful in its melancholy and depressive nature, and I think the band has finally reached maturity on this album. And although between Judgment and A Fine Day to Exit, I would still prefer the former for, let's say, greater ambition and elegance, the feeling that this work did not come from here, A Fine Day to Exit is valuable precisely for the band's attempt to do something extremely separate from the rest of the work and at the same time deeply beautiful.

ANATHEMA Judgement

Album · 1999 · Non-Metal
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Peacock Feather
True, as for me, is the idea that the greatest works of art are created on the basis of a personal tragedy of a creator. In this case, creators are the Cavanagh brothers, who had a great tragedy – their own mother died. Plus, Patterson, as already mentioned, left the band (his place on 2 albums will be taken by Dave Pybus, known for playing in Cradle of Filth), so the only right decision that was made by brothers, along with the returning John Douglas, was to start working on a new album, which was called Judgement.

The strongest impulse received from such a cruel combination of circumstances served as the birth of a truly great album, and, perhaps, number 1 in my personal top albums of Anathema. Yes, I love Judgment. I love it for the perfect combination of all the elements that make up the sound of Anathema of those years, I love it for the most excellent compositions, for the softness, sensuality and sentimentality, for the light psychedelicness, for the fact that painful metal arrangements have finally been replaced by strict and elegant rock forms. To be honest, I can't single out any song that falls out of the general canvas, which would be a pass-through, but I can single out the most favorite songs for me: this is the opening album triptych (hit Deep, nervous and hard Pitiless and gentle Forgotten Hopes with outro Destiny is Dead), gothic Make It Right, beautiful male and female duet in Parisienne Moonlight (in which for the first time as a vocalist appears Lee Douglas, sister of John Douglas), Emotional Winter with an intro, as if written for Shine On You Crazy Diamond and hard rock Wings of God.

Wait, did I miss something? Of course, because One Last Goodbye is a special thing, as it is dedicated to the deceased mother of the Cavanagh brothers. And hell, if I'm asked to name the saddest and grieving song of all time, I won't hesitate to name that song. One Last Goodbye is an example of how to turn a personal tragedy into music. Simple in form, in lyrics, but pressing on you as much as you can do in the whole wide world. And you understand everything even without Danny's lyrics and Vinnie's vocals, because the progressive movement of the music leads you to a crescendo and a guitar solo that will make you cry if you are a true emo girl, and make you shrink into a sentimental ball if you are a bearded man. One Last Goodbye, like the whole Judgement, is like a cleansing waterfall, in which you will want to splash for more than one or 2 hours, and each time you again experience a feeling of relief and euphoria when the final and warm notes of the instrumental 2000 & Gone make you turn on the Play icon again on the opening Deep…

ANATHEMA Movies Reviews

ANATHEMA A Moment in Time

Movie · 2006 · Non-Metal
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Conor Fynes
'A Moment In Time' - Anathema (5/10)

First off, might I say that the rating for this work is not based on the music itself. 'A Moment In Time' is being rated here for what it is; a piece of visual media. The songs themselves are amazing, and have been commended as such on other reviews. As far as being a vessel for such beautiful music however, this DVD really comes up short. There are so many errors that make it a sloppy creation, that could have been avoided and corrected had extra care been given.

As far as the musical arrangement goes, things are really good. As well as the band performing, there is a string quartet that plays throughout, as well as a guest appearance from a talented female vocalist. The vocal passion I generally expect from Vincent Cavanagh is a bit lacking here, but that can be forgiven. There's a nice setup here, a beautiful selection of songs, so what could go wrong?

Throughout watching 'A Moment In Time,' I find myself increasingly agitated over the camera work. The camera is fixated on the vocalist, and fails to give a visual mention to either the bass player or rhythm guitarist almost at all!

Another issue is the recording of the sound. For example, during the climax of 'Empty,' the vocals drown out completely for a few seconds. For a band that's had such a high standard of musical quality, my jaw dropped at how they could ever let a DVD release come out to the general public with that sort of negligence.

Despite it's flaws and failure as a professional DVD release however, being an Anathema fan; it's hard to not at least find some enjoyment in it, and there's an CD counterpart included as well! Two stars.

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