Rosetta
The Anaesthete


4.0
excellent

Review

by SgtShock USER (7 Reviews)
August 13th, 2013 | 116 replies


Release Date: 08/08/2013 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Rosetta branch out, making some additions to their sound as well as venturing into darker territory.

Occupying their own niche in the often confined and incestuous world of post-metal music, Rosetta has made a small name for themselves, playing what they call, "Metal for Astronauts". Vast songs, filled with nuanced use of atmosphere and slow-drifting walls of sound certainly fit that description. In their last album, A Determinism of Morality, the band began trimming their songs into smaller, yet still cohesive, segments that stand on their own. Their most recent release, The Anaesthete (Greek, for one who is unable to appreciate art or beauty), continues this trend with nine tracks -- one of them even clocking in at just over 3 minutes. We also get to see Rosetta stretch their legs a little in this record; still refining their previous styles, but yet trying new directions in sound at the same time. The experimental nature of The Anaesthete proves to be a double-edged sword, as I'll get into below.

One of the first things Rosetta fans will notice in The Anaesthete is the sense of darkness that permeates it, compared to their previous works. If Rosetta is metal for astronauts, then The Anaesthete is a ship that has strayed too close to the iron grip of a black hole. It spirals further and further down as it progresses; providing a brief respite in the form of Hodoku / Compassion, before taking the final plunge into the abyss at the very end. Hodoku is also noteworthy, not only because it features guest vocals from City Of Ships' Eric Jernigan, but because it sounds nothing like what Rosetta has done before. Matt Weed's sparkling guitar part and simply beautiful piano accompaniment creates an enchanting aural landscape, and while clean vocals are often a point of contention among fans of this genre, it is difficult to deny how well they work here.

Speaking of vocals, they're mixed higher than ever before in The Anaesthete. Mike Armine's familiar, commanding roar seizes control right from the beginning of the track, Fudo / The Immovable Deity, as he belts out shouts that fiercely drive the song forward. His voice has always managed to convey a sense of emotion in their works, and it is no different here. On tracks like Ryu / Tradition and Hara / The Center, he almost sounds in pain at times; desperately screaming into some great expanse for someone... anyone, to hear him. Rosetta's rhythm section is certainly no slouch this time around, either. 'BJ' McMurtrie's drumming brings some much-needed energy to the genre, remaining one of my personal favorites in music. The way he furiously works his way around the snare and toms, while still maintaining the proper accents and oh-so-essential quarter note pulse is spectacular. At times it could probably seem a bit excessive, but his use of dynamics keep BJ's playing from suffocating the rest of the music. Dave Grossman's bass playing is always easy to pick out in songs, with him pushing out impressive high tones in the song In & Yo / Dualities of the Way, and even carrying a piece of the melody when it winds down in the middle of the track. And of course, there's the crunchy bass distortion that dominates the ending of Ku / Emptiness.

However, don't let my gushing over the band's individual parts fool you. The band's voyage into unfamiliar ground with the Anaesthete has yielded some mixed results. For instance, the double-instrumental conclusion to the album is exhausting and ultimately a unfulfilling. While Ku / Emptiness and Shugyo / Austerity aren't particularly bad on their own (Shugyo's ominous, unsettling tone could easily be at home on a Neurosis record), it's their consecutive lineup that doesn't serve the album well at all.

Myo / The Miraculous, while ferocious as it is short, can't help but seem a tad one-dimensional and lacking. Especially when compared to Oku / The Secrets, which crushes mountains with its heaviness and still manages to make transitions and sound like a complete work. I especially love the brief moment of silence in the first half of the song, building up tension before coming crashing back with more force than before. The song fades out at the end, like some sort of massive titan lumbering away -- searching for its next village to flatten.

Ignoring their ambitious debut, The Anaesthete is Rosetta's most experimental record to date. The band continues to streamline their songs, while making new expeditions into darker and heavier territory. However, I have little doubt that Hara / The Center and the appropriately named Ryu / Tradition are likely to be fan favorites on this album, simply because they resemble their previous works while still sounding fresh and refined. The rest of the album is a bit more divisive. I think the band said it the best, when warning fans on their website that "If one of our previous releases is in your personal top 5 or whatever, then the new stuff might actually be frustrating to you. If you’re more in the “wonder what’s coming next?” camp, then they should be pretty exciting".

Despite its compositional error and lack of depth in a few of the tracks, The Anaesthete is still an enjoyable work with plenty of moments. All in all, I give it 4 completely-unexpected album artworks out of 5.



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user ratings (177)
Chart.
3.5
great
other reviews of this album
Ryan Kroner (2.5)
A passionless and monotonously-structured affair, The Anaesthete is a largely feeble imitation of pa...

Brootalisk (3)
A transformation worth exploring instead goes ignored....

Cryogenix (4)
I shed a tear for what Rosetta might have become but is slowly dying in the shadows of mediocrity as...


Comments:Add a Comment 
SgtShock
August 12th 2013


97 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I hope I didn't come off as too much as a fanboy, here.

DarkNoctus
Contributing Reviewer
August 12th 2013


8899 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

this is going to wear off of people very, very fast

demigod!
August 12th 2013


44727 Comments


that album art is really bad

Digging: Weezer - Everything Will Be Alright in the End

Ignimbrite
August 12th 2013


5391 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

This was super disappointing. Good review, though.

Digging: Jakob - Sines

GnarlyShillelagh
Staff Reviewer
August 12th 2013


6160 Comments


i wonder if they actually burned that girl

SputnikSweetheart
August 13th 2013


199 Comments


Solid review,
I don't really understand what people have against the cover art. Not that I particularly like it and all, it's just that I don't think it's that bad.
Anyway, I haven't had the chance to listen to the whole record yet, but what i heard seemed really promising.

zxlkho
August 13th 2013


3465 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I have come to the conclusion that this indeed rules

zxlkho
August 13th 2013


3465 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Also of course DarkNoctus doesn't like it lol

CameoLover
August 13th 2013


415 Comments


didn't read waiting for the Kroner review

JAV
August 13th 2013


1944 Comments


A review I can read thank black jesus.
Rated higher than it should be imo but I have been enjoying it.

XingKing
August 13th 2013


10866 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Best review so far. I have no idea how I feel about this album. It's somewhere between a 3.5 and a 4

Wizard
August 13th 2013


19524 Comments

Album Rating: 1.5

this is going to wear off of people very, very fast

I thought you loved this dude?

Tbqh, their whole discog is like that. Really enjoy it the first time and then I realize Isis and Neurosis trail-blazed the same path beforehand.

Digging: Godflesh - A World Lit Only By Fire

tacos N stuff
August 13th 2013


377 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Thank god a better review got posted...



MrElmo
August 13th 2013


1955 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah at last

tacos N stuff
August 13th 2013


377 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

still a bit disappointed with this tho :/
review sums up my feelings to the point

MrElmo
August 13th 2013


1955 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Dunno where the dissapointement is coming from tho, am at my 6th listen and this still kicks monumental ass. Also at this point this would be the review I agree with the most and the writing ain't bad, have a pos

Gyromania
August 13th 2013


15941 Comments


great review. still going to post mine as a 3.5, but you covered some important detail here

Digging: Lantlos - .neon

skoopy48
August 13th 2013


1536 Comments


Not dissapointing at all

DarkNoctus
Contributing Reviewer
August 14th 2013


8899 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I thought you loved this dude?


initial excitement wore off

also i'm calling it, this time next month no one will care about this album at all

XingKing
August 14th 2013


10866 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I feel like no one even cares about it now



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