Sound — 10
Oh, Boy! I was looking forward to this album for quite a long time, and now finally I've had for a few days and haven't stopped blasting my eardrums. The Anaal duo have done it again, but have raised the bar a bit further. Again, this is extreme metal at its finest! But with some slightly new approaches not heard from Anaal Nathrakh before. The album sounds as you would imagine, in your face wall of chaotic tunes, but is mixed extremely well compared to other albums. The drums sound fierce as you can hear every hit during the fast blast beats and double kicks. Guitars are crisp and cut through like a knife on pancakes, not to mention Mick's awesome playing. He always manages to create those 1 or 2 riffs in each song that captivate you. But Anaal added more Industrial themed samples to the table, little bit more compared to previous efforts. This is where they raised the bar, as you listen to "Todos Somos Humanos" you will see what I mean. It hooks you instantly and makes you open up a pit in your living room and kick your cats across like a soccer ball! Or maybe that's just me... You get the point.
Lyrics — 10
Anaal Nathrakh has always been known for having some of the most amazing vocals, and also the most obnoxious. "Vanitas" is no exception, as you will see it is on par with "Constellation". But amongst Dave Hunt's insane vocals comes the amazing chorus lines... Just wow. The first song I had heard from this album prior to its release was "Forging Towards The Sunset" and it is still my favorite of the albums. Just hearing him sing the chorus line almost floored me as I hadn't heard him sound that amazing before. But then I purchased the album, heard the rest of the tracks, and was equally impressed. In "Coelo Quies" was another singing standout for me. All in all, I was impressed that it seems Dave raised his own bar just touch higher this go around and I hope he continues this on future records. And I'd love to tell you about the lyrics and if they fit well with the album, but as all AN fans know they never post their lyrics, so we can only assume he isn't just screaming nonsense into the mic.
Overall Impression — 10
Yes, I'm giving this album a perfect 10. It deserves it. After releasing albums since the early 2000's, it is easy for a band like Anaal Nathrakh to lose momentum and progression. But with "Vanitas" they set the bar slightly higher while incorporating all the things that made their albums successful and adding new ideas. The big standout songs are... Well, all of them! But everyone wants to know particulars so those to me are "Forging Towards The Sunset", "Todos Somos Humanos", "You Can't Save Me", and "Of Fire And F--king Pigs" Anaal Nathrakh continue to demolish our eardrums with "Vanitas", a remarkable installation for Extreme Metal that raises the bar just a bit more for the rest of us musicians.