The Japanese band Anatomia have been around for more than fifteen years and, even if Cranial Obsession is only their third full length, they have a discography littered with split albums that testify to their incessant and not only quantitative activity. Cranial Obsession should reconcile anyone with death doom, not the melodic and melancholy one typical of the old continent, but with the harsher and more direct one coming from the other side of the ocean: the evil Japanese trio forces us to headbang furiously with killer tracks like Morbid Hallucination, and then immediately afterwards slows down the rhythms until the asphyxiation with Excarnated. In these fifteen central minutes of the album lies the key to understanding the work of Anatomia, which, from a death matrix in the wake of Autopsy, range at will in a doom universe never so distorted, dark, obsessive and not very reassuring: everything is done with a typically Japanese care without that the roughness and the dirtiness are mitigated in terms of sound impact. The sound of the Japanese is instinctively unhealthy, but has a mysterious ability to wrap the listener in its own threatening coils to make it vain any possible defense: if Vanishment and Uncanny Descension are the equivalent of a navigation on sight full of deadly pitfalls, Absymal Decay describes an idea of funeral doom without room for recriminations or acts of mercy, while the experimental Recurrence anticipates the crying and gnashing of teeth that awaits everyone, hopefully as late as possible. Cranial Obsession, if referred to this particular interpretation of death doom, is one of the best things I’ve heard lately, despite the fact that there is no lack of quality releases in this field, and this says a lot about the intrinsic value of the album and of those who conceived it.
2017 – Nuclear War Now! Productions / Caligari Records