Ana Kefr - The Burial Tree (II)

Ana Kefr are a multi-talented progressive death metal band from California that only seem to get better and better with each album. Their second installment- 'The Burial Tree'- is even more varied than the first, fusing thrash, grindcore, ambiant, industrial, death, and black metal altogether in multiple variations throughout the album. Tracks like "Emago" are more in the technical, melodic death metal sense with enjoyable riffs, solos, and crushing vocals. "Monody" is more along the lines of progressive death metal and even features a saxaphone closing. "In The House Of Distorted Mirrors" makes use of samples and loopings to create a bizzare atmopshere that is sure to disturb and provoke the mind... in a good way. "Bathos" is strictly melodic death metal, almost in the Gothenburg Swedish sense along the lines of a band like One Man Army And The Undead Quartet. "The Zephirous Circus" mixes technical metal with the aggressive drumming and guitar riffs along with carnival keyboard hymns. On the downside, "Jeremiad" is a less than thirty seconds track that offers some wacky grindcore that doesn't really show off the band's strong points, but just seems random and avoidable.

"Parasites" creates progressive death metal in the vein of Between The Buried And Me. "Paedophilanthrope" is more brutal death metal without as much melody or focus on technical bits as the former tracks, but shows that the band doesn't have to be all frills and just deliver some straightforward, skull cracking metal. In contrast, "Fragment" is a brief instrumental that focuses on simple guitar notes and the drums tapping as quietly as possible, which is a polar opposite to their usual aggression. The final two tracks are the most interesting because they outgrow the time length of all the others by clocking past the usual 7 minute mark. "The Blackening" is full of great sole guitar melodies while featuring some industrial vocal bits with fading vocoder distortion. The track chugs its way through and then slows down in the middle before picking up again; there are even some clean vocals in there, harmonized by the vocoder. The final track is the 9 minute epic that really gives off a show when it comes to progressive death metal. The guitar solo near the end is highly melodic and very uplifting in the emotional aspect, which is a great way to calm the listener down from the extremely wild ride they just heard... at least until the last few seconds when everything picks up again.

This album is very complex and sometimes tends to jump all over the place. However, at the same time it is highly varied and will appeal to fans of metal all across the board. Ana Kefr is highly talented in their work and should be very proud of the masterpiece they've just unleashed here.

  1. Ash-Shahid
  2. Emago
  3. Monody
  4. In The House Of Distorted Mirrors
  5. Thaumatrope
  6. Bathos and the Inconclast
  7. The Zephirus Circus
  8. Jeremiad
  9. Apoptosis
  10. Parasites
  11. Paedophilanthrope
  12. Fragment
  13. The Blackening
  14. The Collector

Muse Sick Records
Reviewer: Colin McNamara
Feb 18, 2011

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