Review Summary: Do not pay attention to the rating. The album is UNRATED.
In order to make an impact in the technical death metal scene, a band must force their entrance with violence, otherwise they are torn down by the hundreds of acts that seek to impose their law, whether by their technical skills or by the power of their sound. Anomalous took their time to release their first full-length, after teasing us in 2006 with the Cognitive Dissonance EP, delaying more than once what appeared to be already finished. Does this effort come a little too late? Whatever diluted that 2006 first impression might had become, OHMnivalent
is a declaration of war, done with both a confidence and an ingenuity that is optimistic. What is the point of listening to this type of music if you are not going to get obliterated? Guitarist Max Seeman understands this, so in the meantime he honed his skills to a point where you start to wonder if form can be substituted completely by content, laying lead after lead over layers and layers of riffs, numbing the mind until the listener forget that songwriting is supposed to be there.
Go ahead and listen to OHMnivalent
; before you can get a grasp of what is going on in there, you are halfway through the album. Then Seeman reminds us that he too can restrain himself, and delivers "Mitosis", a moment of calm amidst the waves of fury, effectively dividing the record in two halves. The band next attempts to lower the levels of dissonance and chaos (granted, not by much), establishing some structure to the remaining tracks, making easier to distinguish them from each other. But what in other records would be certainly weaknesses, Anomalous turn them into strengths. Make no mistake, OHMnivalent
hits the spot most of the time as much as it goes overboard, probably because Seeman, paradoxically, does not seem to take too seriously what he is doing, simply abandoning himself to the extremes of his playing. The imagery of the diabolical is only a by-product of the levels of intensity.
But...is it possible for a metal outfit not to have a drummer? Anomalous officially recruits Marco Pitruzzella as their accomplice, replacing the programmed drums of the EP, who proves to be the MVP of the album. Because Marco continually battles Seeman for the spotlight by the precision and franticness of his drumming, dueling the guitarist in a way this one probably did not see coming. The interplay between the two musicians is
the hearth of the record, bringing excitement to what otherwise could be a sterile display of technicality. Anomalous open the gates of Hades and have fun with the sound coming from it, a sound that precedes destruction. Fifty-five minutes later, there is nothing left. Quivering from adrenaline, you look forward to what is next.