We don't have to really be surprised
about it anymore. Since Morbid Angel and now Death can't sell out
the Noorderligt anymore, we can easily say that the once rearing
death metal passion has run low. Yesterdays interests diverge more
and more and adding a progressive band like Anacrusis to the bill
shows that they are expecting this. Not a smart desicion maybe (who
knows this band anyway), but death metal seems to be getting lesser
and lesser priority.
the first band, was in retrospect the absolute most death metal
orientated band this evening. Although their excellent debut "Shadows"
was produced by softy Mameli, this band cracks and I realized it
the next morning when playing the CD. The fact that nobody was familiar,
including myself, with their brand of death metal explains the halfhearted
reaction this evening, but they nevertheless were good!! Especially
the fine melodies, interwoven smoothly into the mainly slow heavy
base, set an gloomy yet fascinating sphere, neither experienced
as doom metal nor as pure death metal. Just special and efficient.
These are the ingredients that
fail, in my personal opinion, with ANACRUSIS. Even
though the band already released four CD's, on an international
level they are still patiently building upon some kind of underestimated
cult status. Undoubtedly their relatively inaccessible sound is
the cause for that. As well musically as with the vocals they are
using theme's and arrangements that are (and this is putting it
mildly), quite freakish. Apparently without fixed patterns, but
obviously building on refined constructions, the band pulled themselves
through the set. Although they were playing before a death metal
audience they were not playing that many speedy, heavy tracks. On
the contrary, even from the heroic debut "Suffering Hour" only the
driving "Butcher's Block" was played while the progressive songs
from the other releases also got a chance.
Many were thinking, 'what is this?' Especially the quite unusual
voice of guitarist/vocalist Kenn Nordi was a thorn in many ears.
From dry talking to weird singing into (typical for him) screaming.
Quite original and as obstinate as the music itself. Although I
have to admit that though they fascinated me at times, it was not
meant for me. Some bands are stuck to the underground forever and
I'm afraid Anacrusis is one of them.
anymore though. Chuck's foolproof spirit already won his fans. He
proved this to be quite right before a crazy crowd. I was struck
by the appearance of guitar player Craig Locicero, snatched away
from Forbidden for the time being as an alternative for Ralph Santolla.
He drew all attention by banging wildly and making fearful faces
(next to a cool and concentrated Chuck). That he was entitled to
do so he proved musically, because despite of all cheerful capers
he managed to play flawlessly . Chuck obviously has an eye for musicians
of genius, which are the only ones his brilliant music tolerates.
Today the set was clearly focused on the more recent work with "Individual
Thought Patterns" and "Human" being the main sources. But "Leprosy"
and "Spiritual Healing" were also represented. Meanwhile all tracks
from the unsurpassed "Scream Bloody Gore" album alas have been deleted
from the repertoire. Not quite a decision to be praised but it's
Chuck's band in the end. As usual the four exellent attuned musicians
played almost perfect; Gene Hoglan was in great form, Steve DiGiorgio
almost fused with his fretless bass and Chuck and Craig smoothly
played solos next to each other. I somehow had the feeling Chuck
did not have a good voice tonight, but this little defect could
not spoil the enthusiasm. The sound, typical for Noorderligt events,
was naturally sublime again, attentively balanced providing every
musician with enough room. All in all a predictable but satisfying
show tradionally ending with "Pull The Plug". Despite fierce cheering
and yelling for more, Chuck did not return..... his job was done
and he doesn't put in overtime anymore!