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We're Here Because We're Here - Anathema AnathemaWe're Here Because We're Here

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It's been over six years since Anathema's last album 2003's thoroughly underwhelming A Natural Disaster and the Liverpool sextet are continuing on the path that has led them a world away from their gothic doom origins. Album number eight is a towering record full of soaring rock songs with epic intentions and more than a healthy dose of prog. In fact, it's no surprise to discover Porcupine Tree man Steven Wilson was behind the mixing desk for this one, as there are more similarities to the Hertfordshire luminaries than ever before.

Few traces of metal remain, but much in the way the awe-inspiring Aereogramme developed, Anathema craft music as light as a feather but that pulls you in with the strength of gravity. 'Dreaming Light' is gorgeous, Ville Vallo crops up on 'Angels Walk Among Us', 'Universal' is a symphonic workout, Lee Douglas (drummer John's sister) adds her vocals to Vincent Cavannagh's (whose vocals have improved considerably) on 'Everything' to double the song's touching grace, and the dynamic build of 'A Simple Mistake' is immense in scale the crescendo finale stretching out for three minutes and leaving your jaw agape for its entirety.

There's no catchy numbers, you won't find yourself humming these songs, but when you press play this masterpiece of a record will take you on the kind of journey every budding musician dreams of achieving. They've come a long way from Serenades, and they've lost a lot of fans by developing their sound, but only the blinkered and stubborn could argue that they haven't become ten times the band they once were in fact, we're going to go all out and claim that nothing this band has done even touches We're Here Because We're Here. It's been a bumpy road to reach this album, but it's led to one of the most moving albums of the year.

Rating: 5/5 by Phill May

Tracklisting

  1. Thin Air
  2. Summernight Horizon
  3. Dreaming Light
  4. Everything
  5. Angels Walk Amongst Us
  6. Presence
  7. A Simple Mistake
  8. Get Off, Get Out
  9. Universal
  10. Hindsight

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