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Vemod Import

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3.6 out of 5 stars 13 reviews from

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Audio CD, Import, 30 Jun 1990
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program) 3.6 out of 5 stars 13 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fourth wave of progressive music 2 April 2016
By J.Park - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This 1993 debut by this Swedish outfit is just fantastic and was released at a time when grunge was fairly popular. I really like the energy and moodiness of the music, and although alternative rock/grunge influences are the strongest, there are some 1970s progressive influences too - mostly Red-period King Crimson (1974). I also love the cover - it reminds me of the cover to the Black Sabbath debut, except that it is purple and the Sabbath cover was a lot creepier.

The tunes are longish and alternate loud passages of heavily distorted and trebly bass guitar, bone-crushing electric guitar and drums, with softer passages of (real) mellotron and acoustic instruments including cello. Minor keys are used exclusively, so this stuff is very gloomy. The vocals are an acquired taste, but I think they work well with the music. Yes, I know - with the exception of the vocals, I could very well be writing a review of Red (King Crimson, 1974). The big difference between this group and King Crimson, is that Crimson was far more sophisticated when it came to harmonic syntax and counterpoint. As I said, Anekdoten is more alternative rock than British progressive rock, but the group draws on the progressive influences effectively.

The version of the CD that I have was issued by the Japanese label Arcangelo and has the incredible bonus track Sad Rain - this is a fairly adventurous piece of music. The gothic lyrics are included and there is a decent booklet with some informative information regarding recording credits etc. The sound quality is really good.

All in all, this is a fine album that shows a fourth wave of progressive music just getting started. Along with Anglagard and White Willow, Anekdoten remains one of the pillars of the Scandinavian progressive rock scene.
5.0 out of 5 stars ... band who use the mellotron and never abandoned it like King Crimson did 20 July 2015
By larry e. dahl - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Finally a band who use the mellotron and never abandoned it like King Crimson did. Superb, masterful playing by all members of the band and a distinctive song writing ability. This compares well with "red" by KC. Vocals are not a strong suit but I prefer my prog rock primarily instrumental.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Off to a Good Start 25 July 2002
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Audio CD
With the release of the stunning "Vemod" album in the mid-90's, it was apparent that Anekdoten was going to become a major fixture on the prog scene.
And so they have, and why not? With music like this, its difficult to see how it wouldn't appeal to a prog fan. While citing King Crimson as an obvious influence (3 of the members used to play in a King Crimson tribute band), this band has a sound that is all their own. The album opens with the dark, gloomy mellotrons of "Karelia," which soon evolves into a full force instrumental rocker. While maintaining the heaviness and energy of heavy metal, this track has much more than boring power chord riffage. The tune has loads of nimble guitar workouts, dissonant patterns, and yes, some chords. The confident Bruford-esque drumming and growling bass provide a strong, concrete foundation for the guitar, mellotron and cello that accentuate the song.
"The Old Man of the Sea" starts of with some heavy but complex riffing (odd meters) which segue into the vocal sections, which are a bit mellower. Though the group has two lead vocalists, it is difficult to distinguish between them. While they are decent overall, at times there is an annoying vibrato, and a bit of off-key notes. These, however, are only minor distractions. Anyway, the vocal sections are mellower and 70's sounding with piano, then this scorching, psychotic, screaming riff comes flying in, leading the track into some dark and sinister prog metal, not of the Dream Theater type, but of a much grittier, gothic styling.
Thundering guitar and a nice chromatic mellotron ascension open up "Where Solitude Remains," a track that blends loud and soft parts to great effects, and has a very strange dark and doomy feel to it. Features more obligatory, but certainly not boring riffing.
"Thoughts in Absence" has some jazzy sounding clean guitar and equally jazzy brushed drums, and some very dark lyrics ("Life begins/And ends with pain") Also has a very touching mellotron refrain. One of the best tracks on the album.
"The Flow" starts off with some sparse sounds, which bring to mind things like "The Talking Drum" or "Close to the Edge." Once the intro gets out of the way, the heaviest track on the album is free to stomp about. The riffing is manic and insane, the rythym sections crushing and harsh. Once it slows down, some sinister vocals with more of the deliciously dark lyrics come in. This song has its hard rocking parts, as well as the sinister slow dirges that make it a real hard hitter.
"Longing" is an acoustic instrumental which features some beautiful classical guitar and strings. It has a very sincere feel to it, and the title couldn't be more appropriate. Very melancholy but stunningly beautiful, this emotional song verges on breathtaking, with its sparse acoustic textures and melodies of a darkly sublime beauty. Another one of the album's best.
"Flow" kicks you... after the brooding "Longing" with some medium paced dirty guitar playing and trippy psychedelic vocals. This song is quite trippy, and the melody is very strange.
Sure, you can compare these psych-prog-metal rockers to King Crimson all you want, but this astoundingly dark and powerful band are something that only Sweden could produce. And if this is only their first album, you know these guys are going places.
4.0 out of 5 stars Brutal Beauty (Gotta Be Cruel To Be Kind!) 18 Oct. 2006
By Jeffrey D. Elsenheimer - Published on
Format: Audio CD
This has to be my most exciting discovery since Porcupine Tree (the album and the band.) Thanks once again, Amazon for great recommendations! These blokes (and lady) can FLAT PLAY! There is a resemblance to King Crimson's "Red," but not to the point of plaigarism, not even close. Just killer bass, splashes of MELLOTRON, and paranoid android guitar pyrotechnics ala Bob Fripp. I usually judge how much I enjoy a CD by how many tracks I load onto my portable mp3, and there are numerous between this disc and its follow- up "Nucleus." Serious, serious musicianship (I'm serious!) Truly the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. So why 4 stars? (actually 4-1/2.) As mentioned, the vocals are not a strong point, but much better than some I've heard on pop radio (and those jokers make more money!) Every track is a keeper, my favorites being "Karelia", "The Old Man and the Sea," "Longing" and the ultimate, heart-wrenching MELLOTRON track, "Sad Rain." Oh yes, this track is found on the Japanese edition, a bonus track. It's worth it even if you have to pay a little extra. One of my favorite 'TRON tracks ever! And, to top it off, the spookiest album cover since the debut Sabbath album! Don't hesitate! This disc will be one that resides in your stereo on a regular basis!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Appreciation of Unique Sound Grows with Repeated Listenings! 18 April 2001
By bogubundus2 - Published on
Format: Audio CD
I agree with some of the other reviewers that Anekdoten is a group which requires repeated listenings to get into. At first what sounds like noise and chaos grows on you the more you listen and as you realize that this is by design, not by accident. For example, the raw, ragged guitar sound which some might say borders on sloppiness may cause the listener to think that the guitar player can't play, but the precise solos in "The Old Man & the Sea" and "Where Solitude Remains" prove that this can't be true. Anekdoten's sound is totally unique; they sound unlike any other progressive rock group I have ever heard - definitely not run-of-the-mill and definitely not boring. Their sound is comprised of distorted guitar chords building massive walls of sound, interspersed with beautiful, quiet, introspective, melancholy passages of mellotron, piano, and cello. This is all overlaid over an excellent Wetton-style bass-and-drum combination that is either hard driving or melodic as the mood requires (no boring thump-thump one and two-note bass lines here!). And although they sometimes fail in their execution, especially in the area of vocals, which range from slightly off-key to badly off-key (if the vocals in "The Flow" don't make you cringe, you must be tone deaf), I give Anekdoten an "A" for their approach and uniqueness.
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