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Anubis Gate: Covered in Black

We've followed the career of Denmark's progressive metal veterans Anubis Gate quite closely over the years here at Sea of Tranquility, and needless to say we've been looking forward to their seventh studio release Covered in Black with much anticipation. Released on Nightmare Records, Covered in Black is not so much a concept album but an album brimming with themes, specifically dealing with 'people in dark places' and all relating to current events and situations going on in the world today. Henrik Fevre (bass, lead & backing vocals), Kim Olesen (guitars, keyboards), Michael Bodin (guitars), and Morten Gade Sørensen (drums) have once again teamed up with Jacob Hansen to produce the album, and not surprisingly Covered in Black is a wonderful sounding recording.

One of the things that always stands out about Anubis Gate is their ability to inject soaring melodies within the progressive metal framework, and though Covered in Black of course contains plenty of jaw dropping musicianship, it's the songs that rise above everything else, tunes like "The Combat" instantly sticking into your brain like glue with the irresistible vocal harmonies and crushing riffs, or the immediately catchy "Psychotopia", complete with a can't miss chorus and driving rhythms. The band drop in some cool progressive as well as ethnic elements on the album, like the Middle Eastern flavors on "The New Delhi Assassination" and the '70s styled prog keyboards on "Too Much Time" and "A Journey to Nowhere". Of course, expect a wealth of sizzling prog-metal as well, such as the blazing, three-part "Black", "Blacker", and "Blackest", featuring some splendid vocals from Fevre and a wealth of complex riffing. The 9+ minute "Operation Cairo" combines all these elements together for some serious drama, while closer "From Afar" again highlights those glorious vocal harmonies over inventive riffs and complex rhythms, with some cool Pink Floyd sounds thrown in for good measure.

Quite simply, Covered in Black is one of the best progressive metal albums you are likely to hear this year, by a band that just keeps delivering one winner after another. If you haven't yet discovered Anubis Gate, what are you waiting for? Jump on board right here, right now.

See more about this release on our recent YouTube show!

Track Listing

  1. Psychotopia
  2. The New Delhi Assassination
  3. The Combat
  4. Too Much Time
  5. A Journey To Nowhere
  6. Black
  7. Blacker
  8. Blackest
  9. Operation Cairo
  10. From Afar

Added: September 10th 2017
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 2629
Language: english

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» SoT Staff Roundtable Reviews:

Anubis Gate: Covered in Black
Posted by Steven Reid, SoT Staff Writer on 2017-09-09 19:11:22
My Score:

A consistent shining light in the gloom of cookie cutter progressive metal, Denmark's Anubis Gate have never been an act frightened to shy away from evolution, the band slowly moving to a more melodic, dare I say, accessible standpoint over the years. As its title may suggest, Covered In Black is set to change that. Deeper, darker and more dense than before, the Anubis Gate attack is still centred on melody, striking arrangements and strangely simple complexity. However, this time round they've added a more bullish and, in places, almost blunt approach. That said, with the likes of "The New Delhi Assassination" infusing the Asian flavours you might expect from the stated intention, there's still more than enough enigmatic mystery contained within to invigorate the sense and hold the imagination.

A safe, simple journey this is not, jutting edges and shards of powerful metallic intent glistening gleefully through "The Combat", or the bristling yet bright "From Afar". Adding more intrigue is "Operation Cairo", where some middle ground is discovered between the juddering force of much of this album and what the Gate have provided before, but still with a slightly harsher prod and poke. Arguably however, it is the trio of "Black", "Blacker" and "Blackest" that feels most vital on an album that seldom slips below impressive; an ironic splash of colour suddenly evident in the gloomiest of occasions. Therefore it's the songs with the most monotone monikers which actually bring the most light to a release that slowly reveals a quite breathtaking number of hues. The subject matter also marries up to the harsher, darker musical approach, the bleakness of the new world order and the struggle of the human spirit to overcome it revealed and not always in an optimistic manner that suggests it will all be OK in the end…

Be warned, Covered In Black can often be a slow burn of an album, where the pure, dark beauty of what's been crafted is only revealed after lengthy excavations on the listener's part. However after a few attempts to chip away the album's tough outer coating, the rewards soon become plain to see.

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