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Anomalie - Tranceformation review




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Band: Anomalie
Album: Tranceformation
Release date: November 2021


01. Trance I: The Tree
02. Trance II: Relics [feat. Nornagest]
03. Trance III: Alive
04. Trance IV: Nemesis
05. Trance V: Cerulean Sun [feat. Sakis Tolis]
06. Trance VI: Eternal Burden
07. Trance VII: A Feverdream [bonus]


Can you sound trance-like without being psychedelic?

Anomalie, not to be mistaken for the funk jazz project of the same name, is also a one-man project, except for the session drums. Lukas Schlintl has been the project's drummer on all albums except the debut, and he reprises his role here, but this still seems to be less of a duo and more of Chris Marrok's project. Chris is also a live member for bands like Harakiri For The Sky, Agrypnie, and Schammasch, so it's not like he is a stranger to sort of being in another band but not really. Plus, both of them were once part of Selbstentleibung. Memberships and related band namedropping aside, Anomalie has been a band whose place in the post-black metal world has always been as a recognizable name, but not really as a leading force.

That might also be because of how post-black metal still struggles to define itself and the way most of it already fell in the blackgaze sphere. A lot of Anomalie's previous work could comfortably sport the "blackgaze" tag, even if the "gaze" still felt more like "post". But for the most part they still clearly felt like black metal. Tranceformation on the other hand is both the band's least gaze-y record and also the least black metal. There's still some left, especially the latter, but it's more of an afterthought or an implicit association with the sounds that are still left. So, genre-wise, it's closer to progressive/post-metal, but something that still clearly comes more from a post-black metal sphere. The vocals, even at their harshest, feel more in line with post-metal than anything pummeling or cold that one could expect from the "black metal" tag. But the thing is, clean vocals feel more in abundance here.

While we're on the vocal side, there's some guest spots from Rotting Christ's Sakis Tolis and Enthroned's Nornagest, both of which add some nice nuances to the vocal field. And as far as the clean vocals are concerned, there's a ritualistic and almost gothic/folky vibe from them. This kinda works hand in hand with how the atmosphere of the record is more trance-like. Both melodic black metal and post-metal already had ways to sound hypnotic, so merging them together creates something very effective at sounding trance-inducing without sounding psychedelic at all, which are two terms one often uses interchangeably for a lot of atmospheric music. But as atmospheric as Tranceformation is, it never explicitly puts emphasis on it, instead just letting it ooze from its melodies and textures. For a one-man band (and a drummer), Anomalie is extremely well-adjusted to making it sound like they're a full band. The bass is full, the guitars hit, and though it's not performed by the mainman, that guest violin on the 5th track is such a nice touch.

And when I mentioned that post-black metal struggled to define itself, this feels even more true as each of the bands that represented that tag, from Der Weg Einer Freiheit to Harakiri For The Sky, all continuing to evolve their sound in different directions. That rings true for Anomalie as well, and Tranceformation is a testament to that.






Written on 02.12.2021 by Doesn't matter that much to me if you agree with me, as long as you checked the album out.


Comments

Comments: 9   Visited by: 72 users
02.12.2021 - 21:10
DarkWingedSoul

It was on my want list, but then when i listened to it, i didnt get why, probbaly i wasnt in the mood for it, so i'd better give it another try on a snowy winter night...
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03.12.2021 - 13:53
TheBigRossowski
Dudeist Priest
I've transformed more (no pun intended) into the post-metal type myself, so whether it was blackgaze or some form of post-black, I'm happy to hear it.
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That rug really tied the room together, did it not?
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03.12.2021 - 16:01
Rating: 8
musclassia

This is the third Anomalie album I've heard and the third one that I very much enjoyed; I think there's a bit too much similar stuff of similar quality at the minute for this to necessarily stand out as a whole, but I will say Trance V really caught my attention on my first listen
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04.12.2021 - 01:19
Rating: 8
Uxküll

I liked this one quite a bit, lower 8 out of 10.
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"Nullum unquam exstitit magnum igenium sine aliqua dementia [there was never great genius without some madness]."

Best of Metal A-Z: http://metalstorm.net/users/lists.php?user_id=158339
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04.12.2021 - 22:35
Rating: 10
TempleOfR

@musclassia:
neutral question: what bands do sound similar to this album in your opinion? because seriously, to me it is damn outstanding and incomparable to everything i know, although I dare to say that I know almost all bands that are mentioned to compare the record, yet every attempt just fits quite a bit. I'd be really curious if somebody can recommend anything to me that is really comparable and on the same level than "Tranceformation" because I'd love to have more choice then "just" those 7 songs
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05.12.2021 - 14:22
Rating: 8
musclassia

Written by TempleOfR on 04.12.2021 at 22:35

@musclassia:
neutral question: what bands do sound similar to this album in your opinion?


So it obviously depends how close two things need to be to count as similar, but other albums in the last couple of months that have nestled in a similar intersection between black metal and post-metal as Anomalie in my opinion are Der Weg Einer Freiheit - Noktvrn, Noise Trail Immersion - Curia, Hope Drone - Husk, and to a lesser extent (more -core or blackgaze-oriented), Still - { } and A Secret Revealed - When The Day Yearns For Light. I feel like I'm probably missing something else, as I feel like I've encountered a few albums in a very similar vein in a short period of time, but those are the ones that I can remember right now.
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07.12.2021 - 16:00
Rating: 10
TempleOfR

Ah ok, thanks for getting back on this. It is obviously simply a big difference in how we perceive music individually. Except for one, I know the records you mention, but for me this Anomalie album is for instance far far away from Der Weg Einer Freiheit. I also like their recent releases, but the music and especially the vibes are on a totally different page for me. DWEF is really well done stuff, but in my point of view they have a way less original style and idendity, musically speaking...
Anyway, we all hear things differently, always interesting to observe different points of view!
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18.12.2021 - 11:26
tea[m]ster
Au Pays Natal
Written by musclassia on 05.12.2021 at 14:22

Written by TempleOfR on 04.12.2021 at 22:35

@musclassia:
neutral question: what bands do sound similar to this album in your opinion?


I feel like I'm probably missing something else

Numenorean
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rekt
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22.12.2021 - 15:05
Al-thor

Finally got round to listening to this one properly and have found it to be a definite grower and moving up my playlist, thanks for the review
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