Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2019
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

Privacy Policy

Anathema - 75%

dismember_marcin, April 12th, 2019

My exhumations continue, so let's dig out now a 1992 demo from Polish band Cryptic Tales. "Anathema" had originally been released by Carnage Records on tape, but in 2009 another Polish label Redrum 666 released it on CD, which is very cool. Although they've changed the artwork, it all looks very well, especially the big band photo in the fold out booklet. And if it wasn't enough, there's a media file for your computer, which contains more old photos, gig posters, old interview from Thrash'em All... Good!

And what can I write about "Anathema"... Well, this is pretty solid demo, I have to say. Although I don't think it belongs "to the most interesting death metal demos in the early 90's Europe", as the CD booklet claims it to be, it definitely is a worthy and good recording, for sure a classic from Polish death metal scene. Cryptic Tales started as a standard death metal band, with a strong Scandinavian influence (alike to Tiamat for instance), which is characterised by a strong melodic base of some riffs and the dark atmosphere of the music. But there's also quite a lot of doom / death metal influence from acts like Paradise Lost and Anathema. Or some Dutch bands as well! So if you take all these things together, the result is pretty fuckin awesome music. Riffs are heavy and gloomy, but they're very well corresponding with melodic parts, so the result is very good. They never really sound very brutal or fast, music is mostly mid or slow paced, but I like that it sounds atmospheric, yet vicious. There're some additional instruments, like acoustic guitar, keyboards and even fuckin contrabass in "Voices Inside the Beast", so Cryptic Tales definitely had a lot of good ideas for their music. Which is also important as they composed some very long songs, such "Putrid Mutants" is near ten minutes long, so they had to diverse them as much as they could. To be fair, Cryptic Tales sounds sometimes a bit sloppy, the performance isn't perfect and it all is quite rough and very archaic nowadays, but that is something what I actually like, it has its charm. It is more obscure this way. Two songs originate even from the earlier demo „Sign of the Southern Cross”, but these new versions are surely better.

And the production is also good, I think it's better than on most Polish death metal demo recordings from that era, which is definitely something noteworthy. All in all, there's 40 minutes of old school doom / death metal and I can assure you "Anathema" is worth to have. Very good demo.

Standout track: "Voices Inside the Beast"
Verdict: 75/100