The vinyl version of ‘The Nightmare Becomes Reality’ is now available from Record Heaven as well!
Finally available on vinyl from Horror Records – pressed on black vinyl limited to 260 copies!
FEARnet writer Gregory Burkart has written an article about modern euro-horror musical acts.
Did Anima Morte make this awesome list? Click below to find out!
Hell-o zombies, horror freaks and other beings out there!
It´s time to summarize 2011 in the Anima Morte camp.
2011 kicked of great as we had just signed a record deal with the prominent swedish proglabel Transubstans Records, who have been doing a great job getting our music out there!
In late March we re-released our debut album “Face the Sea of Darkness” on digipak w/ 2 bonustracks and in early April “Face the Sea of Darkness” also saw it’s second pressing on (bronze!) vinyl through the great danish metal label Horror Records.
Our second album “The Nightmare Becomes Reality” was released through Transubstans Records in late April and surprisingly entered att #17 (!) on the swedish charts. The album was recieved very well and has gotten great press and reviews thus far.
In early 2012 we will hopefully see the release of “The Nightmare Becomes Reality” on vinyl through Horror Records. Next year will also include a new album release (if everything goes as planned) and maybe a little video too Who knows, maybe we are fortunate enough to score a horror movie.
Anyway, we wish to thank everyone who have bought, listened or in any other way supported Anima Morte and our music. Thank you!
Cheers and Happy Horrordays!
Daniel, Fredrik, Stefan, Teddy
From It’s a Trap! by John Norby
If you’re in any way familiar with the work of legendary Italian horror director Lucio Fulci and his longtime musical collaborator Fabio Frizzi, you’ll adore this second album by Swedish prog-horror crew Anima Morte. Whilst the entire album harks back to the good old days of Italian horror, there are notable similarities between various songs and their cinematic counterparts, all given a prog-metal overhaul. “The revenant”, for example, is like an updated version of Frizzi’s work on “City of the living dead” whilst the title track isn’t too far removed from Stelvio Cipriani‘s sterling work on Umberto Lenzi‘s 1980 classic “Nightmare city”. There are numerous examples of this on here — too many to list in a review — but mention must be made of that fact that this album is a creative homage to an inspirational film movement rather than a rip-off of cult soundtracks. A sublime production highlights every nuance of the band’s wonderful creativity and, while the music will appeal to a select audience rather than wow the masses, it will wow anyone who gives it a chance.
From FEARnet by Gregory Burkart
Back in 2008, I was totally blown away by the full-length debut album Face the Sea of Darkness by progressive-rock instrumental combo Anima Morte, who label their style as “vintage Italian horror music from Sweden.” That description is so accurate that casual listeners might have thought the record was a long-lost release from Goblin, Fabio Frizzi or any number of beloved Italian composers whose work is forever linked with legendary filmmakers like Dario Argento and Lucio Fulci.
Since then, the band has aligned itself even more closely to classic ’70s and ’80s Euro-horror than their well-known American counterparts Zombi… and their follow-up album The Nightmare Becomes Reality is solid proof. Read on for a detailed review of this masterpiece of vintage horror rock…
One thing that separates Anima Morte from most horror bands is their focus on the themes, styles and moods of Italian artists like Goblin (Suspiria), Frizzi (The Beyond), Ennio Morricone (Bird with the Crystal Plumage), Riz Ortolani (Cannibal Holocaust), and the De Angelis brothers (Blade in the Dark), as well as their peers Keith Emerson (Inferno), Fred Myrow and Michael Seagrave (Phantasm), while avoiding direct references to the horror movies that those composers scored. No movie samples, horror-based lyrics or tongue-in-cheek song titles here: their main objective is to capture the musical essence of the Italian horror genre, creating soundtracks to movies that never existed (although I really wish they had) and conjuring that beautifully surreal nightmare quality that master filmmakers like Fulci and Argento crafted through visuals and bizarre dream-logic storytelling.
The quartet of Fredrik Klingwall (keyboards), Daniel Cannerfelt (guitars), Stefan Granberg (bass, guitars and keyboards) and Teddy Möller (percussion) employ vintage instruments like Hammond rock organ, electric pianos, Moog synthesizers and Mellotron tape loops to recreate the musical technology of ’70s and ’80s progressive rock, then stir the pot with dark ambient soundscapes and just the right touch of horror effects to magnify the cinematic feel. One of their greatest strengths comes from instantly catchy melodies and hooky motifs – the same elements that caused so many great horror movie themes to become permanently stuck in our heads over the years – and that skill is honed to a razor edge on this release.
The straight-up horror elements emerge first with the intro “Voices From Beyond,” an atmospheric synth piece sprinkled with whimpers and screams (I think the last one is the pre-title scream from Fulci’s City of the Living Dead). The explosive track “Corridor of Blood” follows, summoning all the band’s strengths by bringing together acoustic guitars, slippery synths, gritty bass, warm violin, Mellotron choirs and tremolo organ for a sweeping anthem of evil. “The Revenant” begins as a more ethereal piece, with Goblin-like keyboard arpeggios (very similar to the vibe of their classic album Roller) alternating with bursts of high speed guitar-strumming. “Contamination” is a moody mid-tempo number with piano and synths trading back and forth on a simple but memorable repeating motif, while “Passage of Darkness” is a darker, more menacing track with less aggressive keyboards but a very frantic drum line that infuses it with nervous energy.
“Solemn Graves” is a fitting title for the following cut, with its pensive, outdoorsy feel created by acoustic guitar and warm synth lines that call to mind a windy afternoon in an overgrown cemetery. “Delirious” briefly leaves the horror elements behind, running through the grassy fields of ’70s prog-rock and calling to mind the epic instrumentals of Keith Emerson or Rick Wakeman; but we’re soon back on spooky turf with “Feast of Feralia,” a darkly menacing tune that hints at Phantasm with its organ patterns, loping bass and eerie unnatural choirs.
The title track is one of the most chilling on the album, opening with synth strings forming a lush background for a haunting piano riff, before an urgent pattern of glassy synth triplets enters the scene, calling to mind Daemonia’s updated version of Goblin’s Suspiria theme. The 8-minute epic “Things to Come” paints a broader canvas of mixed styles (there’s even a brief slug of psychobilly-flavored rock) but it feels intimate and tightly focused, with a sweet piano break midway through, and the melody is one of their hookiest. The album closes with the shuffling, repetitive “The Dead Will Walk the Earth,” which doesn’t quite live up to its Dawn of the Dead-inspired title, but the electronic zombie voice effects in the background are an excellent touch.
It’s worth noting that this band is more than just a novelty on their home turf: The Nightmare Becomes Reality placed very high on the Swedish album charts, holding its own against even the biggest-name artists from the world’s most far-reaching record labels. Even if Anima Morte’s music remains a niche subgenre in other parts of the world, fans of classic Italian horror and vintage progressive rock should do themselves a solid and put a copy of both this and Face the Sea of Darkness in their permanent collections – not just in tribute to our favorite horror music composers, but also because these albums are so damn good on their own.
For a little taste of Nightmare, check out the clips below – including an excerpt from their studio recording sessions and a teaser featuring “Corridor of Blood,” definitely the best track on the album.
From Métal Intégral by Alain
Rated 18 out of 20! (In french and translated english)
From Rocktopia by Ian Johnson
Swedish instrumental horror progressive metal is how the band Anima Morte is described in their record company info pack. That’s a genre that I haven’t heard of before, and with that kind of musical tag hanging around their necks what do Anima Morte really sound like? Well, I was expecting firstly, with the horror thing in the bands musical description, a lot of heavy, heavy guitars, grinding bass lines and pounding drums, plus some weird sounds and screaming. Instead what I found whilst playing ‘TNBR’ was a band that play really interesting prog rock that reminded me in places of Spock’s Beard, The Flower Kings and Sieges Even, just without the vocals. And even without the vocals the band’s strange but very interesting take on the whole prog genre, holds your attention from start to finish. For me this music could have been used as a soundtrack to an Italian slasher flick by that master of gore Dario Argento, which is I think what the band were probably aiming for.
Yet, I have, as I said in another review, rather shied away from instrumental albums as after the slew of guitar heroes that came and went in the late eighties and early nineties, that genre of rock music began to annoy me. I have always loved hearing the singer belt out the melodies, and too many of those instrumental albums were being released week on week back then. So what have Anima Morte done to change my mind about instrumental rock? Firstly they have made an album that I have found to be strangely enjoyable, even though there is not a singer in sight. The thoughtful, odd, ethereal quality to their music and the wonderful musicianship on show, made this album a joy to listen to, although as I have such a strange and eclectic love of rock and listen to most of its genres, and find pleasure in each, maybe this will not be a CD that everyone who reads this magazine will enjoy, so be warned! The more adventurous and the prog lovers among you may find much to like and enjoy as this album plays.
Kicking things off with the pompy keyboard laden ‘Corridor Of Blood’ is a stroke of genius, which only helps the band to draw you into the macabre world and sensuous music of Anima Morte. They then continue to entertain with songs as strong and as bold as ‘Contamination’, which reminded me of a lot of early Mike Oldfield, the beautiful Hammond organ led ‘Solemn Graves’, that features some wonderful, intricate acoustic guitar work, and ‘The Nightmare Becomes Reality’, which is another fascinating keyboard driven track that starts slowly and then builds into an exciting climax. Then lastly for is me is the albums tour de force, the eight minute plus ‘Things To Come’, a song that has some superb guitar and keyboard interplay and wonderful melodies, which are mixed with strange jazz rock passages that gel and work so well together, that you’re taken along on a fantastic musical journey.
Whilst I may think that the horror metal tag might be pushing what these guys are all about in the wrong direction, I will say that I did find this CD to be a clever mixture of weird, melodic and strange prog rock, that also turned out to be one of the more interesting albums that I have had the pleasure of listening to in quite a while.
Check out the interview over at Metal Army America:
Vintage Italian Horror Music From Sweden
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