Anata - _Under a Stone With No Inscription_
(Earache / Wicked World, 2003)
by: Jackie Smit (
For a genre accused of stagnation at the frequency that death metal is, it's almost amusing to see these belligerent epithets fall flat in the face of recent innovative efforts by the likes of luminary acts such as Zyklon and Akercocke. Anata, the latest signings to Earache's ever-expanding Wicked World imprint, are an equally adventurous lot, owing as much to jazz fusion and noisecore dissonance as they to the detuned barbarism of Decapitated and Suffocation. Consequently _Under a Stone With No Inscription_ turns out to be an invigorating, exciting listen -- technically masterful and as brutal as a pitbull on acid. "Entropy Within" introduces the listener to some of the most effective and dizzying fretwork witnessed for some time, while "Leaving the Spirit Behind" puts guitar wizardry to one side and goes about the business of melting eardrums in a style not unlike recent Krisiun output. The downside is that the production, while crystal clear, does not always pack the punch that it should. There are also times when Anata seem to be overreaching in their quest for fresh ideas. For the most part however, _Under a Stone With No Inscription_ is a daring and engaging release by a band who we'll no doubt be hearing a plenty of in the future.
(article published 12/26/2003)
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