|Review: Anaal Nathrakh - Eschaton|
Label: Season Of Mist
Year released: 2006
Genre: Black Metal
Review online: April 29, 2009
Reviewed by: Brett Buckle
Rated 4/5 (80%) (8 Votes)
After the somewhat flat and uninspired Domine Non Es Dignus I was a bit concerned for Anaal Nathrakh. I mean, this was the band that destroyed minds and melted faces with The Codex Necro, what the fuck were they doing producing borderline melodeath? When Eschaton was dropped upon the slavering masses I pressed my play button with some small trepidation. What I didn't expect was to be raped aurally in the best possible way! This, my compadres, is the real shit – total fucking destruction in musical form!
Intros? Bah! Who fucking needs them? Not Anaal Nathrakh, that's for sure, and with the scream of "that's fucking bullshit!" they herald the ensuing onslaught of violence. "Bellum Omnium Contra Omnes" blasts out of your speakers with remorseless disregard for your eardrums, and if it takes you more than 5 seconds to screw up your face and begin furiously headbanging then you are in the wrong place – perhaps the VH1 website is more your speed. "Between Shit and Piss We Are Born" comes on next, and if you were expecting the pace to slacken any then you will be reassured by some brutal blasting and hellborn screaming before Dave Hunt bursts into one of the catchiest choruses you will ever hear, his forthright clean vocals pointing out that "it's unto shit that you return". That's 1,000 pounds of awesome right there. Incredibly, the pace is lifted another half dozen or so notches for the just fucking insane "The Destroying Angel" – this is extremity without peer! Filthy and vicious with perhaps the most insane vocal performance ever as Mr.Hunt screams his arsehole out with extreme prejudice. With a very apt S.O.S. at the start, this track will leave you battered and bruised and slavering for more. And more is what you get. At no stage does the punishment stop with "The Yellow King" and "The Necrogeddon" tearing your throat out until the slower industrial grind of "Regression to the Mean" closes the album on an ever so slightly calmer nightmare. I am leaving the best until last here with "When the Lion Devours Both Dragon and Child", a track that delivers on every count and refines it into one hell of a memorable track that you can't help but listen to over and over.
Everything about Eschaton is brutal. Harsh, abrasive guitars, furious blasting drums (albeit programmed), rumbling discordant bass and throat shreddingly coarse vocals combine to overwhelm the listener – it truly is a gut-wrenching experience. But the real beauty here is that Irrumator (Mick Kenney), riff writer extraordinaire, is able to make the entire experience memorable rather than the blur of blasting and screaming that you might expect it to be. Couple this with one of the most fireborn vocal performances you are ever likely to hear and you have an album that should one day, if there is any justice in the world, be considered an utter classic of extreme metal.
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