Anaal Nathrakh - A New Kind Of Horror review




Bandcamp music player
Reviewer:
8.5

103 users:
7.70
Band: Anaal Nathrakh
Album: A New Kind Of Horror
Release date: September 2018


01. The Road To…
02. Obscene As Cancer
03. The Reek Of Fear
04. Forward!
05. New Bethlehem/Mass Death Futures
06. The Apocalypse Is About You!
07. Vi Coactus
08. Mother Of Satan
09. The Horrid Strife
10. Are We Fit For Glory Yet? (The War To End Nothing)


Anaal Nathrakh's A New-ish Kind Of Horror comes from the same family as The Whole Of The Law and Desideratum: the traditional cesspit of black metal, grindcore, and industrial metal broken up by clean choruses, now littered with electronics, groove, and other increasingly disparate elements. The duo hasn't yet gone full-bore into this more avant-garde side yet, but the metal side remains wicked.

Dave Hunt tested out his King Diamond-style wails on the last album; now we hear him implementing this technique in full, his grisly falsetto a hideous mockery of cries of pain. The results are as hideous and discomfiting as what we should expect from Anaal Nathrakh. Even on the 'thrakh's tenth album, Hunt remains one of the hardest-working and most versatile vocalists in metal. This man will do anything with his voice to make your day terrible - listen for those Rainer Landfermann-style backing vocals in "The Apocalypse Is About You!", the gale-force roars in "Vi Coactus," and canine retching pretty much everywhere.

Likewise, the band as a unit has stuck to its philosophy of acquiring and utilizing any sound necessary to create evil; we hear the symphonic/classical elements of "New Bethlehem/Mass Death Futures," the high-caliber industrial chugging of "Forward!", and the supercharged but structurally classic-sounding black metal of "Mother Of Satan" and recognize that the musical language employed by this band is as limitless as its hatred for the sins of mankind. It's impossible to deny the versatility present - and, as Anaal Nathrakh's shortest album to date, A New Kind Of Horror concentrates its songwriting power effectively and feels like a more solid, more compact application of The Whole Of The Law's strongest elements.

Anaal Nathrakh's practice of keeping their lyrics close to the chest leaves us with song titles, liner notes, and the odd intelligible snippet of vocalization to work with when discerning the band's thematic interests. Typically, the most I can interpret is a general preoccupation with those ideas and subjects that are most humiliating and inimical to humanity, those that inspire the greatest fear and disgust. A New Kind Of Horror puts those concepts on parade in the context of World War I - and in history few greater examples could be found of the stupidity, wastefulness, and arrogant destructiveness that mankind is capable of than that "war to end nothing," which makes it a perfect target for the writhing mass of indescribable malevolence that you'll be witness to here.

Interspersed with observations of current apocalyptic behaviors and the broader scope of existential terror, these violent blizzards of blastbeats show us the ugliest side of war: the side of the war where whole platoons drown in oceans of mud and are lost beyond recovery, where unwitting draftees blister and retch in clouds of mustard gas that will slowly burn them away from the inside out for years to come, where entire landscapes are blasted from the earth by endless volleys of futile retaliation. Taking inspiration from some of the great war poets, such as Siegfried Sassoon and Wilfred Owen, songs like "Forward!" and "The Reek Of Fear" introduce elements of the gradual mechanization Anaal Nathrakh has undergone over several albums and give us a picture of Death in the modern world, his cloak and scythe replaced by an industrial monolith of artillery. As someone who has always been interested in history and spent time studying this war, I feel an ability to connect with A New Kind Of Horror in a way that I don't always achieve with other Anaal Nathrakh material, and that only makes the terrible anger of this album all the more tangible - and likewise the horror of that war can infiltrate the present all the more deeply.

I was introduced to Anaal Nathrakh some time around the release of Passion; on hearing A New Kind Of Horror, I am struck with the same feeling that struck me then and that strikes me every time I hear an Anaal Nathrakh album for the first time: this band makes terrifying music. It's easy to be jaded by the rampant preoccupation with "dark" imagery and themes in this genre; metal was born evil and it'll die evil. Anaal Nathrakh, however, manages to tap into a vein unspoiled by the prying eyes of most other artists, a peculiar place of primal energy that will make screams of "FORWARD!" echo in your nightmares. This is scary music and they want you to be scared by it. But don't worry… it'll all be over by Christmas.


Rating breakdown
Performance: 10
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 8
Production: 8


 



Written on 11.11.2018 by I'm the reviewer, and that means my opinion is correct.


Comments

Comments: 8   Visited by: 175 users
11.11.2018 - 21:37
RaduP
CertifiedHipster
Why do people call them a blend of all those genres but never metalcore, which is what they're closest to? You bigots.
----
Okay, this is epic!
Loading...
12.11.2018 - 11:01
corrupt
With a lowercase c
Quote:
This man will do anything with his voice to make your day terrible

That one made me laugh
It is obvious that AN are among the more dedicated musicians in the scene right now and the time Dave takes live to explain the songs and how they work for him are as much of a tell as this awesome review. I always enjoy reading your reviews and this one more than most. I don't dig AN's more recent albums as much as I do their first few (especially Codex Necro) but you sure write it up in a way that makes me want to spin it again.
----


Schwarzmetall!
Loading...
12.11.2018 - 14:45
nikarg
Old Nick
What corrupt said. This review is better than the album itself.. and the album is excellent.
----
Follow me on Instagram

Loading...
14.11.2018 - 00:45
Fallen Ghost
Craft Beer Geek
Written by RaduP on 11.11.2018 at 21:37

Why do people call them a blend of all those genres but never metalcore, which is what they're closest to? You bigots.


Not sure if you're trollin' or are actually serious..?
Loading...
14.11.2018 - 10:35
RaduP
CertifiedHipster
Written by Fallen Ghost on 14.11.2018 at 00:45

Not sure if you're trollin' or are actually serious..?

Partly and partly. It's kinda impossible to label them a single genre, but I've never seen Metalcore listed in things they combine, which is likely due to folks seeing metalcore as more Bullet For My Valentine than Converge. Anaal Nathrakh are def as metalcore as they are grind, if not more, at least as far as I heard them.
----
Okay, this is epic!
Loading...
14.11.2018 - 20:39
Baz Anderson
I became a bit bored of this band after the Black Widow album, but this album really got me back into them. Really great album!
Loading...
14.11.2018 - 23:26
ScreamingSteelUS
Editor-in-Chief
Thanks, guys. It's always fun reviewing Anaal Nathrakh.
----
Row, row, fight the power
Djently down the stream

I'm the Agent of Steel.
Loading...
25.11.2018 - 16:05
Fallen Ghost
Craft Beer Geek
Written by RaduP on 14.11.2018 at 10:35

Written by Fallen Ghost on 14.11.2018 at 00:45

Not sure if you're trollin' or are actually serious..?

Partly and partly. It's kinda impossible to label them a single genre, but I've never seen Metalcore listed in things they combine, which is likely due to folks seeing metalcore as more Bullet For My Valentine than Converge. Anaal Nathrakh are def as metalcore as they are grind, if not more, at least as far as I heard them.


I hear ya! A single genre wouldn't justify their music for sure, but I have problems catching the metalcore influences in their music.
Loading...

Hits total: 2291 | This month: 349