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Beauty within chaos - 87%

BlackMetal213, July 26th, 2015

"The Insignificance of Life" was the only full-length album to be released by German black metal band Anti. This album isn't anything we haven't heard before within the depressive suicidal black metal sub-genre. It's extremely emotional and effective at creating a doomy atmosphere of depression and nothingness. Anti currently seems to be on hold, so I'm not sure if this will be the only album we get from these guys, but seeing as it came out nearly 10 years ago, I guess only time will tell.

"Nothing" is a favorite of mine from this album. It's somewhat atypical for a depressive black metal song and begins with thunderous blast beats and a riff that sounds somewhat like classic material from Darkthrone mixed with the melancholy of Burzum. The guitars on this album are the main provider of the gray, fuzzy atmosphere. Clean guitars make up the very first section to the intro of "Landscape in Minor", the album's second track. This adds a very somber element to the album's already hopeless atmosphere. The riffing throughout is quite simplistic, as to be expected, and very melodic. The melodies we hear throughout the album are key elements to the sadness throughout. These songs are also fairly short in comparison to the compositions from a lot of other DSBM bands, with the longest track being "Farewell (Escape into Beyond)", only clocking in at slightly over 6 minutes. In fact, only two songs are over 6 minutes, the other being "Invocation", which contains a nice guitar solo. This is somewhat of a letdown for me because one reason I listen to DSBM is for the long, droning, repetitive songs. There certainly is repetition here, but the shorter song lengths don't allow for too much of it. A very interesting addition to the album is the final track "Mourning Soul", which happens to be a cover of the classic Absurd track. This one is quite different from the original, whereas the original had a very punk-influenced sound, this one is played in a very slow, depressing way. This song also contains a completely original and effective guitar solo.

The production on this album is perfect. The instruments are all heard very clearly and we get an effective atmosphere because of this. It's definitely still fuzzy and raw, but you can tell you're listening to a professional full-length album. We can also hear the bass which exhibits a very dark, heavy tone, as it should. Although it's rare in black metal, it works nicely here and makes the music sound even darker and more haunting. The vocals are nothing new. But as we all know, even though something lacks originality, it can still be good and effective. These are standard black metal screams and they do their job well.

This is a solid depressive black metal album. My only real complaint is within the length of the album. At 29 minutes, it's fairly short. I would have loved to hear another track or two, but it is what it is. This is a great slab of haunting German black metal and recommended for anyone into the more depressing stuff.

Numb Your Mind - 94%

Chugger, February 6th, 2012

This has to be one of the catchiest suicidal black metal albums I’ve encountered. Every song is an extreme metal anthem despite all of them having a similar sound, as another reviewer said. You can really hear the influence from black metal bands all over the genre’s history. If I had to describe this album in terms of past black metal albums I’d say it’s a fusion of Transilvanian Hunger by Darkthrone and Suicidal Emotions by Abyssic Hate.

Not surprisingly, every song has a very despondent atmosphere. The band likes to begin their songs with simple, slow, clean guitar melodies then pause for a moment before going into full mosquito-buzzing tremolo with blistering fast double bass in the background. It’s a minimalist approach to song structure, but it works very well. Speaking of minimalism, the production is fairly raw (not quite Pentagram by Gorgoroth status, but close), and none of the instruments ever gets overtly complicated. The guitar sticks to tremolo riffs played in some minor key and doom-laden melodies played over perpetually “full-speed-ahead” double bass. It’s not like the drums are only there to fill the background with double bass though. The drummer also plays some very simple, slow yet consistent rhythms over the double bass which serves to add a sense of cohesiveness to each song. The last song, Mourning Soul, shows a bit of experimentation by the band. There's a beautiful guitar solo in the middle of the song, and it fits perfectly. I only hope that they'll incorporate this into their style in future releases.

Now we get to the content of the album. If you decide that you don’t like the album because it’s about suicide and depression then there’s no reason that you should ever listen to a band so deeply embedded in the suicidal black metal genre. Most people who listen to this album have already developed a taste for depressive music, and that’s why this it’s such a great album for its audience. Anti’s vocals are surprisingly easy to understand after your fifth time or so through the album, and are extremely personal. When you listen to Anti sing, it’s painfully obvious that he’s throwing all his anguish and hatred into his performance.

If you like black metal and you like emotional, depressing music then you’ll enjoy this album. Fans of bands like Abyssic Hate, Forgotten Tomb, Xasthur should give this a listen to see if it’s worthy of adding to their library. Trust me, you’ll decide that it is. Can't wait for their next album.

Sublime Misery - 85%

karma_sleeper, April 23rd, 2008

Seems I'm late to the party a lot these days. ANTI, a depressive black metal band from Brandenburg, Germany, received a lot of attention for their debut album The Insignificance of life back in '06. So it took almost two years for the waves of excitement (or should I say anguish) to cross the Atlantic and knock on my door here in the States. When I opened it, I was swallowed by the deluge of ANTI's depressing blend of black metal.

Normally, I'm not very excited about 'depressive' black metal. Isn't black metal woeful enough? I'm no musical expert either (as already evidenced by my writing) but it doesn't seem too terribly difficult to make a depressive black metal album. Of course, it's another thing entirely to make a good depressive black metal album. To my great surprise, ANTI has achieved just that.

Anti, in Egyptian mythology, was a god who ferried Isis to an island where Set was trying to persuade the other gods to allow him to achieve power. Set did not want Isis, Horus' wife, present because he feared she would attempt to disrupt his plans. Isis disguised herself as an old woman, bribing Anti with a gold ring. Anti took Isis across the river to the island where she promptly used her magic to disrupt the council of the gods. Anti was punished by having his toes cut off. As a falcon, this meant Anti could no longer perch on his boat and ferry people around. Who knows what the boys behind ANTI thought when naming their band, but I'd like to think the story of Anti shows one way in which life may become insignificant.

Every song on the album is droning in a repetitious yet hypnotically catchy way. Unceasing percussions accentuated by excellent cymbal usage, raw distorted riffs of continuous tremolo picking, and vocals typical of the genre but deep enough so as not to embody a banshee's wail comprise most tracks. I say the songs are droning because there is little if any variation once you get past the intro, yet also catchy because the style of the vocals, guitar, and drums weave together so seamlessly that it becomes something unexpectedly enchanting as your mind picks over and through all the nuances of the finished product. Rarely has music invoked such sublime misery in me.

And then...Nothing. How fitting. It all comes to an end roughly 29 minutes after drawing you in. In fact, it's not the first moment you might feel cheated listening to The Insignificance of Life. The average song length is pretty short for music with such buzz. Songs end far too soon after feeling so enamored with sadness. And with the last of the six songs being an Absurd cover, ANTI only delivers five sonic treats for you. What a shame.

While not a masterpiece by any means, ANTI manages to come pretty close to perfection with their debut album, The Insignificance of Life. It draws you in from the start and leaves you begging for more tastes of oblivion just as quickly. Definitely worth further investigation if you're even remotely interested in black metal and can live with the dismally short length.

Originally posted on my blog -

Germany Uncovered: Part II. - 70%

Perplexed_Sjel, March 5th, 2008

What do we have on our hands here then? Another depressive black metal band? All right, sobeit! I know Anti through the bands member, Anti. Not only is Anti a member of this firmly established black metal band, but Anti is also a member of Darkestrah, a band who I've come to really love over the past few years. Every so often, I go through stages of trying to find new depressive bands to listen to and eventually I got around to Anti. This German outfit are signed to a label I'm not overly familiar with, W.T.C. Productions, so I had no real idea what to expect from them, aside from the obvious depressive tendencies.

This band have gained notoriety over recent years, especially with the release of their debut album, 'The Insignificance Of Life'. It's easy to be a band of this nature, but it's very hard to be a good band of this nature, so when I read the rather positive reviews, I was excited. Although I'm not a fan of 100% ratings on Metal Archives, even though I've given one or two in my time, I decided my interest was enough to purchase a copy of the debut alone. I tend to find overblown reviews rarely give you a clear insight into what to expect. So, after purchasing a copy of the debut, 'The Insignificance Of Life', I got down to business.

In my experience, depressive black metal bands usually have very long songs and thus, very long albums. 'The Insignificance Of Life' was a change to that particular theme. This album is rather short, and contains rather short songs. I was a tad disappointed, in all honesty. I know it's perhaps rather irrational, but I've come to enjoy long songs. I like how they're developed over time and it gives me enough to work with when reviewing an album. Short songs are obviously over in a lot quicker time than long songs, so my disappointment at the fact that this record is under half an hour long was rife. I tried not to let it affect my judgment of the album, as a whole, but it has. I just can't fathom the reason why bands of this nature would conduct their music over a short period of time. Bands like this, that are of a depressive nature, rely heavily on connecting with the audience. The longer you give yourself to do that, the better chance you have of doing so, usually.

Anti's 'The Insignificance Of Life' isn't what I was expecting, at all. It's a much slower release than I was expecting. Almost at walking speed for periods at a time. We do come to sections where a fast tremolo picking style completely takes over, but the slow, almost lethargic nature of the percussion is rather off putting. The drums aren't the main feature of this album, at all. They, like the guitars, are monotonous. The job of both the drums and the guitars is to repeat, repeat and repeat. If you repeat enough, it sinks in. The effectiveness of the repetition is judged by how well the music can grab you. In terms of 'The Insignificance Of Life', it's affective to a point, but due to the short nature of the songs, riffs come and go, moods pass me by and disappointment is still lingering in the air. Would I say that this band, and this album are overrated? Yes, I would. I can grasp the feel of the hype to an extent. There are occasions when those distorted dirges do take you over. The riffs can become hypnotic, but again, short songs are the downfall. By the time you've become engrossed within a song, it's over and you're moving on to the next.

With the length of this album, soundscapes can often feel incomplete. It's at times like these when you look to the vocals to take control. To assert some amount of authority, but they never really do. On occasions, they can fade away. Whilst it isn't all doom and gloom for Anti, this isn't the greatest depressive black metal album i've heard.


nick_forest, July 5th, 2006

Really really a fantastic album. And it was actually composed on the earth. How could that amazing thing happen? You should blow out the light, let the moonlight flow into your room, breathe this darkness, and close your eyes when the music fades in. Imagine your inner world, follow the slow melody, and listen to what your inner world and your spirits are telling.

Anti, a brilliant band, has created this incredibly perfect album which is specially designed for those who love the art of darkness, the art of depression, and, of course, the art of black metal. Anti combines the essence of Burzum, Nocternity, Countess and many other brilliant bands with their unique elements and eventually gave birth to this flawless music in "The Insignificance of Life".

My favorite song in this abum is "Invocation". The song begins with a beautiful acoustic intro which injects strong emotions of depression into your blood. Then the guitars are suddenly distorted, intensifying the flow of the blood of depression. The melody is of magic power, and if you listen to it carefully, you'll be definitely convinced that it is created from the bottom of humans' spirit. The guitar solo make the effect of sound more distant. At 5:00, the acoustic guitar fades in again, indicating the ending of this great chapter.

The rest of the album are just so great as "Invocation". Believe it or not, not only did I feel depressed the first time I listened to "The Insigificance of Life", but I also felt quite happy, just because it's the best black metal album I've ever enjoyed. I suggest when you meet with some failure in your life, this album is your best choice in that it will lead you see through the meaning of life and make you understand that you shouldn't have been afraid of anything that could happen in life. So I'd like to recommend this album sincerely. Check it out, and you won't regret it ! !

The Insignificance of Life - 100%

blaaaa, April 24th, 2006

The insignificance of Life is an exceptional debut effort by the German depressive black metal band Anti. Though the album delivers much of the same sound throughout the album, the small changed are very noticeable and create a fantastic album. Anti is another band who has followed the path of raw black metal, and like many other raw black metal bands, they are able to perform an entire album that is completely unique and original and is able to capture the listeners attention for the entire length of the album.

The album consists of slow repetitive drumming, raw and distorted guitars and a very unique vocalist who sings in a very deep raw voice. Though the combination of these elements might sound boring, together they create some of the most fantastic music to be heard, it is very atmospheric and allows the listener to be pulled into the music and be a part of it, this is something that can only be done by good black metal albums created by great musicians who know how to create music from the heart.

Track one, Nothing, starts the album off with an ambient sound and after a few seconds’ heads straight into the music to yield the fastest part of the album, the vocals of A. Krieg are introduced to give the album its most unique sound. One minute into the track and the speed drops significantly and the true sound of the album is shown to the listener. A very atmospheric sound with much emotion poured into both the vocals and instruments.

A strike of thunder is heard, followed by some very beautiful guitars, more thunder and more guitars, track two, Landscape in Minor has begun. A much slower song with slightly altered vocal styles; the guitars gently change from the clean cords at the beginning into he raw distorted sound that was heard on Nothing. The drums follow a repetitive slow pattern that the guitars are able to follow. The vocals are thrown over the top without following the sound of the instruments; there is a long length towards the end of repeated drumming and the same guitar riff from the rest of the song that creates a beautiful and atmospheric sound.

Invocation’s begins with almost perfect harmony between the constant tapping of cymbals and various drums and clean guitars. After this introduction the guitars becomes distorted again and the drumming, apart from the cymbals, is increased in speed, A. Krieg releases another one of his screams that will have become second nature to the listener as the song progresses forward to introduce a new riff and some added vocals. This song is as perfect as any of the previous and carries the same attributes which make each one of Anti’s songs so amazing to listen to. The guitars in this song really stand out and some interesting riffs are played in a much clearer sound than the rest of the album.

Farewell starts with a distant sound of a distorted guitar playing a short but amazing riff over and over again, the guitars become louder and the rest of the music is introduced, once again the vocals change on this song and become much less audible than previously, they are much harsher and seem to carry much more pain and anguish. This is the longest song on the album, and is very repetitive but is free from any loss of significance to the album as it is one of the best songs on the album.

Zero Point begins and there is little more than seven minutes left of the album, the last two songs are much shorter but carry the same heart as the entire album. The vocals have deepened and are very near inaudible; this does not remove the atmospheric affect from the album, as the vocals are able to fit into the music.

The final track, Mourning Soul, begins and the listener is greeted by a devastatingly anguished scream that leads into the end of a journey. The guitars are more epic and clean in this song and the vocals are much more powerful. The drumming follows the same patterns of slow and repetitive. The rest of the song leads out in the vein of the rest of album, and it is finished with a scream and a fade out of guitar.

Both Anti and A. Krieg write the lyrical content that mostly is focused around depression and suicide with the exclusion of Invocation that is taken from the book “Necronomicon”. This song is a weird cult chant that strays away from the style of the other songs.

The lyrics are most likely direct expression from the artists who not only allow their emotions affect the lyrics, but also allow it enter the world of the music and vocals. The sound is a direct result of the pure pain and agony that is put into this album. Allowing emotions to control music is the best way of achieving an excellent product, as the music not only comes from the mind, but from the heart and soul of the artists.

This album is a definite purchase for anybody who is into slower and depressing black metal, as well as people who enjoy the sounds of atmospheric and ambient bands as Anti takes you on trip and allows you to experience the music first hand.